Luna Crossbody Sewalong: Part 9, Sewing + Installing Straps
Folks, we’re in the home stretch now! In today’s post, I’ll walk you through sewing and installing the strap on your Luna Crossbody. I’m showing two methods: non-adjustable and adjustable straps. If you are installing an adjustable strap, skip the section of this post labeled “NON-ADJUSTABLE STRAP ASSEMBLY”.
The Luna is designed with a thin 5/8” strap, but you can easily adjust the size to your preferences. You’ll just have to cut the strap fabric piece wider. To calculate the width of your strap, take your desired finished strap width and multiply by 4. For example, for the 5/8” strap, I calculated it this way:
5/8” finished strap width x 4 = 2 1/2” wide piece of fabric
If you decide to create a wider strap, you’ll also need larger sizes of purse hardware. It might also be helpful to research available hardware to decide on your strap width.
If sewing a strap according to the pattern instructions, all the hardware you need is included in the Luna Hardware Kits in my shop.
You may need to add length to your Purse Strap if your fabric width is less than 60” (152.5cm). To do this, cut two lengths of strap from your Main Fabric (or material you plan to use for the strap) with a total length of 61” (154 cm) between the two. Each should be 2 1/2” (6.5cm) wide. Grainline is perpendicular to the longest length of strap.
Lay one of the strap pieces face up, then lay the other face down on top with the ends aligned in an L-shape, like the photo below.
Stitch diagonally across the ends at the corner to attach them together, then trim the corner to reduce bulk and press the seam open. You should have a clean seam join on the right side of the strap.
Fold the Purse Strap fabric in half length-wise and press along the entire length. Fold the two halves inward again, aligning the edges with the center and press again. Next fold the original center fold again with the raw edges concealed and press. You should have a folded strap that is approximately 5/8” (1.5cm) wide.
Topstitch along the entire length of the strap 1/16” (2mm) from each of the long edges.
NON-ADJUSTABLE STRAP ASSEMBLY (SHOWN WITH ALTERNATE LEATHER STRAP BELOW):
Use fray check or a zigzag stitch on the ends of the strap to prevent the ends from fraying if using fabric. They will be concealed in the outer pocket.
Slip one end of the strap approximately 2” (5cm) into the outer pocket close to the outer side edge. Use an awl to create two holes through the Outer Pocket and Purse Strap. Use rivets to secure the strap through all layers, with the back of the rivet on the inside of the pocket and back of the strap.
Now is a good time to check the length of your strap. Try the purse on how you will most likely wear it most of the time and trim the strap length before moving on to the next step. Secure the remaining strap end to the other side of the Outer Pocket with rivets through the Outer Pocket and one side of the Main Body.
ADJUSTABLE STRAP ASSEMBLY:
Trim two 3” (approx. 7.5cm) long pieces from your finished strap. Use fray check or a zigzag stitch to prevent the ends from fraying, if needed. They will be concealed in the outer pocket. Fold the 3” pieces in half and press to create a loop. Feed one end of each piece into a metal square ring, letting the ring rest in the fold you just pressed.
Slip the raw ends of a loop into one side of the Outer Pocket. You can use a pin to secure the strap loop in place if needed, but you may not need them if your fabric is really thick here. Use an awl to carefully drill two holes that go through the Outer Pocket and strap loop (do NOT poke through the Main Body).
Place a rivet post through each hole from the interior of the Outer Pocket. Attach a rivet cap to the post on the exterior side and press firmly with your fingers until you feel the post and cap click together. Do one rivet at a time, realigning the loop as you create new holes for each rivet. Measure the distance between the rivet holes each time to make sure they are consistently spaced (your pattern includes templates for the rivet holes)
Next, secure the rivets by carefully hammering with a setting tool and anvil. You will want to do this on the edge of a sturdy table, with the anvil inside your purse (hammering through the entire purse may create abrasions or holes on the fabric of the opposite side). Rivets usually only require a couple of firm, medium-force taps with the hammer and setter. So don’t go too crazy! It’s recommended to practice on scrap fabric to get a feel for it. Secure rivets will be snug against the fabric and not rattling or shifting at all.
Slip one end of the Purse Strap through the Tri-glide (strap adjuster). Fold the raw end twice against the strap so that the raw end is concealed in the folds and the center bar of the tri-glide is secured in the fold.
Use an awl to create two equally spaced holes through the folded end and secure with rivets. You can also secure the strap by stitching the folded end if you prefer.
Next, slip the opposite end of the strap through one of the Square Rings on the outer pocket. You want to come from underneath the square ring so the the strap comes out in front.
Fold the strap back on itself and pull the raw end up through and back down through the Tri-glide (this may take a little extra effort if working with heaver fabric, don’t give up! You can even use pliers to pull it through). Pull the strap through until the tri-glide is about halfway down the strap.
Slip the raw end of the strap through the opposite Square Ring of the outer pocket, this time in front of the ring. The raw end should be against the purse. Be sure that the strap is not twisted.
Fold the raw end twice against the strap so that the raw end is concealed in the folds.
Use an awl to create two equally spaced holes (centered on the strap and .” (2cm) between holes) through the folded end and secure the strap with rivets. You can also secure the strap by stitching the folded end if you prefer.