13 Dec 2023 • • by Amy

Creative Hacking Ideas for DIY Belts!


Often when we're styling our samples for photoshoots we'll realize at the last minute a look could use a belt. Sometimes it's an accessory to keep the eye moving, sometimes it's to define a waistline, and other times it's a way to get the clothes to lie how we want. In these last-minute moments, we often employ a quick technique to make said belt rather than spend a bunch of time searching online and ordering something in a panic. We thought we would show you behind the curtain of our ad-hoc styling brains so you can have some ideas in your arsenal the next time you're getting dressed and think, "This could really use a belt..."

Rope Belt

For this little number, we used a technique where you sew rope (in this case drawstring from our Kelly Anorak kits) to itself to make a braided-looking belt. We have a tutorial for making a rope bag where we show you how to do this with a simple zigzag finish. You simply need to determine how long you want your belt and then multiple that by how thick you want it. In this case we used three thicknesses of the rope and added a loop on one end so we could have a few options for tying and styling as we went. We secured the other end with black topstitching thread and then cut and frayed the ends. It looked great in the photos and you would never guess it began its life as a humble drawstring cord.

Super Skinny Matching Belt

For this Rose dress for Monsie, we wanted to add some definition to her silhouette and hold things up when we pulled down the shoulders of her dress. Rather than waste paper on a whole pattern piece we just cut a super skinny slice (1" roughly) from the selvedge scraps after cutting out our pattern. We tucked in the ends and folded the raw edges in on both sides. We then pressed and edge stitched the entire length. The result was fast, easy and super effective and best of all, didn't involve any fussy long pattern pieces!

Double Fold Bias Tape Belt

To make a super speedy fabric belt use double fold bias tape! Simply cut to the right length, tuck in the raw ends and sew the fold closed. Attach a few beads or bobbles to the ends to help finish things off or sew a few lengths together along the long edge to make a thicker belt! You could even play with braiding a few colours together to make a piece that compliments the colours in your dress...

Adding a Chain Stitched Belt Loop

In this speedy video tutorial we show you how to make a super simple thread chain belt. If you find your handmade belt slipping around you can easily add a discreet thread chain belt to the side seams to keep things in place. Use a matching thread to the belt and you won't even see it.

We hope this allows you to take the styling reigns next time you're putting together an outfit, channel your inner Anna Wintour and ask your empty bedroom, "I think this look needs a belt, no?"

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