Tips and tricks for snap fasteners

The McCall’s M7470 pattern included with Issue 75 is perfect for snap fasteners.  Give your garment a professional finish by following our tips and tricks for installing snap fasteners.

Snap fasteners can make a little bit of a racket when you install them so make sure you’re not going to annoy your family or neighbours or even scare the cat when you get started. That being said, they are great for working out your stress!

Let’s get started:

  1. First things first, you should always interface the area to which you want to add a snap fastener. This is to help with the strain of the snaps you’re pulling on. On our version of M7470 the placket piece is interfaced which is sufficient support.
  2. Test the fastener using scrap fabric but make sure it’s the same thickness and type of fabric, and interfaced the same way as your garment.
  3. Cut a hole in the material where you want the snap fastener to go. Place the snap fastener on the fabric and, using a fabric pencil, mark a dot in the centre. Snip a small cross first using embroidery scissors, then you can round it off. You can also use an awl to start the hole and then snip it further.
  4. The kit we used included a hole cutter. To use this, place the two metal pads into the tool, close around your fabric and hammer lightly on top. It will cut a perfect circle in your fabric but this is much harder to keep
    central. Remember to hold the hammer directly above the tool, 90˚from the table.
  5. Push the snap fastener through the hole you have made from the RS and lay RS down. You may need to wiggle it into place. (An easy way to tell which is the snap fastener is to look for a taller stem than the washer.)
  6. Place the bottom washer loosely over the top on the WS.
  7. Our kit included a hand-press tool, which has a detachable plastic cup. These cups are sized to match your snap fastener size, meaning you can easily swap when working on different projects.
  8. Looking at the tool, you’ll need to place the front of the snap fastener into the circular space. The tool has a flexible arm that should then bend around to the WS and the side of the tool with the small mountain inside should sit over the washer.
  9. Holding the arm of the tool carefully, use a hammer to tap the end which forces the stem of the snap fastener to gently curl back trapping the washer in place. Voila!

We used mediumweight denim to make our version.

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