How to Make an Elastic Strap for a Dress

Written by camela bryan
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How to Make an Elastic Strap for a Dress
Temporarily take up the waist of a dress with an elastic strap. (Photodisc/Valueline/Getty Images)

A belt or a sash visually cuts a dress in half and makes the wearer look shorter. Control excess fabric at the waist of a dress without adding a horizontal line at the waist. Make an elastic strap with a clip on each end to gather excess fabric and hold it at the back of the dress. Cover the strap with fabric which matches or coordinates with the dress.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • 3/4-inch-wide elastic, 8 inches
  • Ruler
  • Scissors
  • Sewing machine
  • Thread
  • 2 fabric clips
  • Fabric
  • Needle

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  1. 1

    Cut an 8-inch length of 3/4-inch-wide elastic.

  2. 2

    Insert one end of the elastic into the loop on a fabric clip. Fabric clips have a clip on one end and a loop on the other end. They are available at fabric stores and online. They come in metal and coloured plastic. Fold down 1 inch of the elastic and sew as close as possible to the loop to attach the clip to the elastic.

  3. 3

    Cut a 4-inch-by-12-inch rectangle of fabric.

  4. 4

    Make a narrow hem on both of the 4-inch edges.

  5. 5

    Bring the long sides together with the right side of the fabric on the inside to fold the fabric in half.

  6. 6

    Stitch 1/2-inch from the edge with a straight stitch to form a tube of fabric, sewing the fabric together. Turn the tube right side out. Pin a safety pin to the end of the tube and run it through to the other end to turn the tube.

  7. 7

    Thread the empty end of the elastic through the fabric tube with a safety pin. Push the fabric tube toward the clip.

  8. 8

    Sew a clip on the other side of the elastic in the same way you attached the first clip. Distribute the gathers in the fabric evenly.

  9. 9

    Clip one side of the elastic strap to one side of the back of the dress at the waist. Gather the excess fabric under the elastic and clip the other clip to the other side of the waist.

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