Joining the DIY Craze: How to Make a Lanyard

by on October 21, 2015

DIY, or do-it-yourself, has been all the rage since the 1920’s, when the Great Depression forced many households to economize by doing their own housework or house repairs rather than hiring helpers. The economy has improved greatly since then, but the DIY trend endures, spanning fields as diverse as arts and crafts, home improvement, and even electronics.

ID lanyards are among the easiest things to make for those who want to get involved in the world of DIY. It’s true that plenty of firms can make custom lanyards according to a customer’s design, and that there are plenty of stores that offer plenty of good-quality lanyards, but for those who want a specific look and aren’t looking to have it mass-produced, DIY is the way to go.

LanyardsThere are many kinds of ID lanyards available in the market today. The most common ones are made of polyester or nylon. Some companies have also produced lanyards with more environmentally-friendly materials like bamboo or PET (polyethylene terephtalate) plastic, with the latter derived from recycled plastic bottles. Mass-produced ID lanyards are usually customized using one of following methods: 1.) heat stamping, where the design is practically branded onto the fabric, 2.) print screening, where pattern featuring the design is used to distribute the ink over the lanyard, and 3.) dye sublimation, where the desired imprint is transferred directly onto the material, making it less likely to fade over time.

Making ID lanyards at home doesn’t require the sort of fancy equipment needed for the previously mentioned processes, but the options are no less limited. The only thing to remember is that the standard length for ID lanyards (at least the ones that are meant to be worn around the neck) is about 36 inches, as this will be folded in half and slightly trimmed to make a length of 17 inches.

Beaded lanyards can be made using plastic, glass, or stone beads. To make a beaded lanyard:

• Prepare a length of nylon string. Tie a knot on one end, and make sure that it is big enough to stop the beads from slipping through. Fold the string in half.

• Come up with a pattern for the beads, and thread them onto the string accordingly.

• Knot the ends together, and attach a clamp or ID holder to the centre of the necklace.

For those looking for a slightly more challenging project, hand-sewn lanyards are another option. To make such lanyards, even stray swatches of fabric can be used. To begin:

• Take two strips of fabric, about 36 inches in length, and 2 inches in width.

• Align the strips of fabric, and apply pins down the center to keep them in place.

• Using a sewing machine, stitch up one vertical end of the strip of cloth, leaving about a quarter of an inch from the edge as allowance.

• Take the pins out from the edges, and insert a small strip of felt or any other textured material between the strips of cloth.

• Apply pins down the center to keep the strips of outer fabric and felt aligned.

• Stitch up the remaining edges with a sewing machine, allocating about ¼-inch from the edges. Trim any stray edges.

• Attach a clamp or hook to one end, and fold about half an inch of that end through the clamp or hook, and stitch it up onto the fabric above the hook or clamp to fasten it onto the lanyard.

• Take the other end of the lanyard and stitch it onto about an inch above the end that has the clamp or the hook.