HOW TO make narrow swimwear straps

Busy making lots of new patterns including one for the TEENY-WEENY STRING BIKINI.

Having never sewn swimwear fabric before I've been experimenting with different methods for making the narrow straps.  After a bit of trial and error here's my recommendation; super easy...

1. For my straps I'm using 6mm (1/4") wide swimwear elastic.  

I cut my fabric into 4cm wide strips; wider than I need but this makes it easier to handle.

2. Overlock or zig-zag your elastic onto the wrong side of the strap fabric.  You don't need to stretch either the elastic or the fabric.


3. Roll the fabric around the elastic and using your sewing machine zig-zag stitch down the middle.  Once again don't stretch the fabric, it's not necessary.

I used the widest zig-zag stitch and I also reduced the foot pressure just a bit due to the thickness of the fabric.  I highly recommend making some test swatches first.

4. Cut away the excess fabric taking care not to cut the folded edge, tie a knot in the end and voilĂ , it's ready to use!


  1. Perfect! Thanks - so easy.

  2. That looks like really fun fabric!

    If it helps at all, I use a similar method, but there are no raw exposed edges, I've described it in my post here: http://brownpaperpattern.blogspot.com/2013/04/saad-continues-kwik-sew-3416.html

    1. Thanks for the tip. This fabric is still available at Tessuti in Melbourne; it's predominantly black and white with random highlights in brighter colours. The print is quite abstract with a graffiti/punk style to it...lots of skulls and crossbones!