Magnetic clasps are commonly used in both jewellery and sewing. For jewellery, the magnetic clasp makes it easy to connect the ends of a necklace or bracelet together without fumbling with tiny devices. For sewing, the mechanical clasp allows items or garments to use a closure that is completely hidden by fabric. The jewellery magnetic clasp is small, while a sewing clasp is much larger; both are activated by magnets inside the clasp.
Select a magnetic clasp for your jewellery closure. Magnetic clasps are good for those who have trouble opening small jewellery clasps. Magnetic clasps come in two basic types: end-to-end and slides. The end-to-end types have a magnet in the flat-shaped end of the clasp. Place one hand on each clasp and snap the magnets apart. The slide type uses a hollow tube with a slot on one end and a rod with a guide piece on the other. The inside of the tube and rod are magnetic. To use this clasp, align the slot and guide piece and slide it together or apart. The slide provides a stronger connection.
Use slides for heavy necklaces or bracelets with multiple strands. The slide magnetic clasp is designed for multiple attachments with a secure closure.
Use a breakaway end-to-end magnetic clasp for delicate single-strand necklaces and bracelets where size and smallness are part of the jewellery design. Never pull on the beads or chain to open the clasps.
Attach a magnetic clasp to the ends of a necklace or bracelet. Use needle nose pliers to remove the existing clasp by opening the last jump ring attaching the current clasp to the necklace.
Replace the clasp with a magnetic clasp. Use a new jump ring through the last link in the jewellery and through the loop on the clasp. Close the jump ring securely. For bracelets, add a safety chain from the same connectors at the same time. This will add extra security.
Locate where you want to insert a magnetic clasp for your sewing project. Magnetic clasps are often used as purse closures. Attach the clasp when you can still reach the area between the fabrics in order to hide the clasp.
Place the clasp washer over the fabric and mark the slots in the washer. Clasps are typically placed between the decor fabric and a liner of a purse or where the decor fabric folds over near the top edge of the purse. Slide a ruler between the fabric folds and use an artist knife to cut the small slits through just the liner fabric. The ruler will protect the decor exterior fabric from being cut at the same time.
Cut two small squares of interfacing and make the same slits in each piece. The small squares should be larger than the clasp and they will act as reinforcement for the fabric.
Insert the prong side of the clasp into the two slits in one of the interfacing squares. Slide the prong piece between the fabric layers. Insert the prong piece through the cut slits in the fabric. Place the second slit-cut interfacing square over the prongs. Position the clasp washer over the interfacing and bend the prongs toward the centre with pliers. Repeat for the other half of the magnetic clasp on the opposing side of the bag or project piece.
Magnetic closures are not as secure as direct closures. When using magnetic closures for a purse, thinner fabric between the magnets will provide a more positive connection.
Tips and warnings
- Magnetic closures are not as secure as direct closures. When using magnetic closures for a purse, thinner fabric between the magnets will provide a more positive connection.
Things you need
- End-to-end magnetic clasps
- Slide magnetic clasps
- Needle nose pliers
- Jump rings
- Artist knife