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Easy - possibly even cheap ! - leather belts for Tyler and Barbie !

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The Midge Factor

How to turn that neat watch band into an awesome belt for Tyler - even Barbie !

Ever see watchbands on awesome markdowns, and wonder if there was something you could do with 'em ? Or trade out one of yours, and you kinda hate to throw the old one out ? Well, now you can buy up all you like, and recycle your old ones - 'cause I'm gonna show you a quick and dirty way to transform a watch-band into a doll belt ! It'll only take about ten minutes !

Ready ? LET'S GO !

You just need a few things !
youneed.jpg

This is about all you'll need. The watchband of your choice, thread to match, a sturdy hand-sewing needle, scissors, your doll for fitting, and a thimble.

As you can see, these watchbands were dirt-cheap. I got 'em for even less, as it was 75% off yellow tags that day. Most of the ones I use for Tyler and Barbie are between 11mm and 14mm. You can use any size you like, just remember to keep it in scale.

For Barbie and smaller dolls, you may want to consider children's watchbands. Same procedure.

We're on our way !
stepone.jpg

If there's any of those little pins included, you can toss 'em in a box or drawer somewhere, we don't need 'em. Cut off about three feet of thread, slide the needle on, and knot the ends. Unbuckle the bands and pick up the side you'd prefer to start with - it's up to you, it won't make a difference.

So you can tell a bit better what's going on, on this example, I started with the shorter piece, the one with the buckle.

Let's sew !
steptwo.jpg

Notice the holes that go through the band ends. This is where the pins that attach the band to the watch normally go. We're gonna slide our threaded needle up into the hole and out through the side. This'll anchor the knotted ends. You'll probably need a thimble to push the needle through the thick part of the strap. If you don't have one, push the needle against something hard, like your desktop or a penny.

aaaand back in...
stepthree.jpg

Sorry this photo's so weird. I took it four times, believe me, this is the best one. Anyway, we're gonna push the needle back through and out the pin hole. Hope that makes sense...

Bringing it together...
stepfour.jpg

Now, we take the other strap, and run the needle straight through the pin hole. You can leave 'em a bit loose for now. But you can see how this'll connect them together !

Loop time !
stepfive.jpg

Aaaannd then you run your needle straight through the pin hole on the strap you started with !

It's a cinch !
stepsix.jpg

Pull the threads snug to cinch the straps together. Nice and snug, but not so tight your threads will break !

Repeat a few times...
stepsevenb.jpg

Run the loop a few more times from pin hole to pin hole, keeping it snug but flexible. I think I only did this about five times total on this one.

A few securing stitches...
stepeight.jpg

You're probably gonna need your thimble for this, too. I like to add a few stitches along the back, to make it extra secure. You can probably camouflage two as part of the stitching in the watch-band itself.

Aaand, we're done !
stepnine.jpg

Here, you can see the securing stitches I made. They're kinda big, but heck, they're gonna be in the back anyway. Make the stitches too small, and they'll tear through the leather/vinyl strap and lining. Finish any way you like - I threaded mine through the strap on the inside and knotted the ends, then cut close to the knot.

It sure looks great with Elphie's jeans !
final.jpg
Now I just have to learn to make belt loops on jeans !

All that's left is trying it on your doll ! The buckle's fully functional, and adjustable, too !

And I think Elphie likes it ! You can use bigger watch-bands for new looks, or if an old watch-band is too far gone for this, salvage the buckle and apply it to a ribbon.

Hope this gives you some ideas !

You know, I have no idea what I'll do next...