I was in the shower a few days ago and started thinking about what to do with some fabric off-cuts I had lying about. They weren’t really big enough to do anything particularly advanced (and even if they were, I wouldn’t have the skill to make something complex) but I thought that perhaps it would be a good place to try out another idea I had.

We had a large number of Napier Subculture badges made a while ago and there’s still a few around. I was considering turning a few into buttons for a waistcoat I was making. Well, the waistcoat is still only about 40% done and is going to remain so for the foreseeable future, unless I suddenly get a flash of motivation to finish it.

I decided that making a “bracer” might be fairly easy and would be quick enough that I could be wearing it pretty quickly. Well, I was right, mostly.

DSCF8256It wasn’t hard, per se, I just took a little longer than I intended as I tried a few things. The buttons were done in two different ways – the first one I drilled several holes in and stitched fabric to the back of whereas the other two I used araldyte to make a raised lump and attached the fabric to that. I would say that was the superior method but was also quite a lot messier. Argh, contact adhesive everywhere. Bastards.

That wasn’t the only thing I tried out though, the other main thing was the thread used. I found I didn’t have enough black but I did have one spindle/spool of it. I wanted red and black so I tried having one thread feed with red thread, another with black. I’ve got to say, the results were very positive! It meant in places I could put red on one layer without interrupting the other designs. Well, to put it more simply, it let me easily hide my many sewing screw-ups.

I also have never put button holes on anything. I had always assumed they were done manually. Apparently not though, there’s several settings on my sewing machine that allowed the machine to do lots of the work, even if it took three attempts before I mostly understood how it was supposed to work.

Finally, there’s a bit of elastic on the top half, I’ve never worked with it before and learnt quite a bit, although I feel I need to amend the stitching a little as it’s not quite attached enough. It’s not coming off the fabric, I mean more that it’s not bound to the fabric quite right. I have some ideas for that particular problem though, if I can ever be bothered dealing with them.


The end result isn’t perfect, but I liked it enough to wear it in public and didn’t feel like a complete turnip. Now, the next project requires scrap leather and some anime-style source material, although that makes it sound a lot more interesting that it really is.

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