DIY fabric belt project

As I mentioned in my DIY fabric headband post, I had enough fabric left over from rehemming my red, white & blue floral eShakti dress to make a fabric belt. I looked up several fabric/ribbon belt tutorials (see here and here, for starters), so this post won’t really be adding anything new to the process. But I did find out there are a few different ways to make fabric belts, as well as all kinds of different buckle fasteners, so it was an interesting process to narrow down my options before starting on this DIY fabric belt project.

Librarian for Life + Style | Sewing a double-sided fabric belt

First off, here’s the finished result (and scroll down to the bottom for a full-length shot of my first outfit featuring this belt):

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY fabric belt project

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY fabric belt outfit

And here’s how I put this belt together:

I knew I wanted to reuse the floral fabric, but I also wanted to have another fabric as a backing, to wind up with a double-sided belt. I found a stretchy, denim-like fabric on sale at a local Jo-Ann Fabrics store. I used one of the D-ring ribbon belts already in my closet as a guide for the width and to lay out the fabric. I sewed the two pieces together, with the right sides of the fabric facing each other.

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY fabric belt project pinning

The tricky part was that the floral fabric left over from my rehemming project had a noticeable curve, so I had to spend time seam-ripping the hemmed side. I also had to be careful and cut out the denim backing fabric wider than usual, and position the ribbon belt guide in a way that cut a straight line through the curved fabric. You can see the uneven, curved sides of the floral fabric in the shot below. With a fabric pencil, I then marked out the lines from the ribbon belt to follow when sewing the right sides of the fabric together.

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY fabric belt project

I then trimmed the edges and turned the fabric inside out. This part took the longest, but it helped that the denim-like fabric was stretchy. Next, because the fabric tube was a bit puffy, I ironed it out flat. This was a VERY important step, and you can see the difference this made in the shot below. The right side of the belt is ironed flat, while the left side of the belt is still puffed up.

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY fabric belt project ironing

I then pinned under one side that was going to be the end of the belt, and sewed a border around three sides of the belt. I steadily sewed down one side, around the end (which I kept a square shape just to make the process easier), and then sewed back down the other side. By the way, I used a dark navy thread for the top side, and a dark grey thread in the bobbin.

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY fabric belt project

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY fabric belt project

The last step of the project was to attach the remaining end around the two D-ring buckles. One common method I’ve seen in DIY tutorials is to simply fold over and pin the fabric over the buckles and sew a line (straight or zig-zag) to finish it off. But I wanted my belt to be double-sided, so I didn’t want one fabric to lap over the other. Therefore, I sewed on an additional square of denim-like fabric to the floral side, and then folded that over to the back side. The line where I had attached the two pieces then served as an easy visual cue for where to place the D-ring buckles, which you can see more clearly below.

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY fabric belt project

I then folded under the denim-like fabric to make a square and ironed that so the edges were nice and flat before sewing along the perimeter of the square, then sewing an X through the middle for extra hold.

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY fabric belt project

And here again is the finished product!

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY fabric belt closeup

I wore the belt the very next day, using it to break up (yet another) monochromatic look with my grey y’all t-shirt, also seen here. (And did I wear the same t-shirt two days in a row? Almost. Two days out of three. These t-shirts are THAT comfortable, y’all.) I decided to tuck the end of the belt under for a more streamlined look, instead of letting it hang down.ย And more pattern-mixing with my red & white striped canvas flats! ๐Ÿ™‚

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY fabric belt outfit

I definitely made a few errors making this belt — my first fabric belt project EVER! — but it was a fun learning process. I’m interested in some other methods of making more fabric belts in the future (like using blanket binding trim around the edges, as seen here).

What do y’all think? Do you like the finished result?

Link ups: ย Real Girl Styleย ย / ย Style Sessionsย ย / ย Trend Spin Linkup ย /ย ย Wardrobe Wednesdayย ย / ย Pinned and Did It Link Upย  / ย That’s My Style

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28 thoughts on “DIY fabric belt project

  1. Rebekah

    Very cute belt! It looks like you could’ve bought that in a store!

    My question is, where did you get your pants? My husband, for some reason, really likes cargos on me, but I got wood stain on the one pair I have. Yours are super cute!

    Reply
    1. Jen @ Librarian for Life and Style

      Hi Rebekah! I bought these cargo capris — this grey pair, plus a brown pair — at Kohl’s years ago. I think they’re the Apt. 9 brand, and it looks like they’re still making variations of this basic style, http://www.kohls.com/product/prd-1224531/apt-9-cargo-convertible-capris.jsp . I like that, in addition to being really comfortable, you can wear these capris in different ways: either rolled down for a bit more length, or rolled up a little bit more. I’m wearing them in this pic with just one cuff roll.

      Reply
  2. Style Journey

    I am impressed! This turned out really great. Sewing is not my best skill, but I do like to practice and see what I can come up with. Great job! Thanks so much for linking up today too. I love seeing what you all come up with ๐Ÿ™‚

    Reply
  3. Del (@SpudNails)

    I love your whole outfit and the fact that you made that belt!! It’s amazing and you could have fooled me into thinking it was store-bought.
    That T-shirt is awesome and you’re making me wish I still had a pair of cargo pants. Maybe I should get a new pair…
    dropping by from That’s My Style Link Party.

    Reply
  4. Pingback: Matching florals | Librarian for Life and Style

  5. Pingback: Sewing adventures: How I made a belt and a headband out of a ribbon | Librarian for Life and Style

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