One problem you might encounter in having a camera around is securing it while you carry it. A camera strap is an underrated accessory despite its use. It helps you secure your camera all the time. Now, looking for a camera strap that will fit your need might be daunting with the vast choices in the market, hence making one will be the best idea.
Start by securing the tools and materials, determine the length of the strap you want, cut and slide it through your swivel clasp. Stitch ends in place, and trim the leather according to the exact size. Punch holes and set rivets for both ends.
No one wants a camera to get damaged while photo and video taking, and one way to prevent this is by securing your camera with a camera strap on your wrist or around your neck. This will ensure our camera delivers the highest level of aesthetic quality while being comfortable in using it. After all, photos are the only ones we can have after that special moment. Surely you’ve searched for the perfect leather camera strap tutorial, so if you’re actually looking for a camera strap that’s going to last you a lifetime, then look no further for you’ve already found the best one for you. It will also discuss the time you will spend making one and why you need this for your next leather project.
- Step 1: Prepare the Tools and Materials
- Step 2: Determine Length of Your Leather Strap
- Step 3: Polish the Leather Strap Ends
- Step 4: Slide Your Strap Through A Clasp or Lobster Claw
- Step 5: Punch Your Holes For The Rivets
- Step 6: Hook the Strap To Your Camera
- Step 7: Make Final Adjustments
- Step 8: Add Some Decorative Features (Optional Step)
- Perfect Reasons To DIY a Leather Camera Strap
- Spending Wisely on Making a DIY Camera Strap
- Tips in Making A DIY Leather Camera Strap
- The Final Product
Step 1: Prepare the Tools and Materials
Similar to previous leather projects you have done, you should start by preparing the tools and materials. Since you will be doing a camera strap, there will be no more important material than durable leather and a clasp. At the same time, here are other tools and materials you should have before you start.
- Rivet Setter
- Cutting Mat
- Leather Hole Punch
- Swivel Clasp with D-Rings
- Steel Shears
- Tape measure
- Brass Mallet
- Leather piece or leather strap (you can use a leather scrap as long as sufficient for the length you need)
- Strong Thread
- 6 Rivets
- Fabrice (any color, any type just for added decor)
Step 2: Determine Length of Your Leather Strap
After preparing all your tools and materials, we now move on to making your leather strap. First, we have to measure it. The measurements you will take will depend on how wide and long you want them to be, so get your tape measure and start measuring your leather.
In getting the length of your leather camera strap, make sure to get the appropriate length for your body and camera that will not hinder you from moving while you wear this around. Always consider comfortability while you determine the length and width of the strap.
With a tape measure, measure the leather according to the width and length you like your strap. Make sure you measure them equally to avoid common mistakes.
Once done, you can now get your cutting mat and scissors or cutter to start cutting your leather piece. In cutting, you can also use a strap cutter for easier work or do it well manually. Ensure to get an equal cut along the strap. Examine the strap and trim off excess leather material. Set it aside and prepare your swivel clasp for the next step.
Step 3: Polish the Leather Strap Ends
Before using your strap, you must consider if it’s comfortable to wear. This is one challenge if you use leather since you have to polish its edges to get that good feeling while you wear it. Polishing means smoothing out the excess leather fibers that might irritate or make you uncomfortable while you wear the strap.
You can do this with a burnisher and wax. You can apply enough amount of wax and dab along the strap edge. After doing so, use the burnisher or slicker and go along the edge. The heat produced with burnishing will melt the wax polishing the edges and making it somehow water-resistant.
A caution, though, is that if you are planning to apply paint or dye on your leather, you should do it before applying wax since leather paint or dye may not penetrate efficiently if there is wax beforehand.
Step 4: Slide Your Strap Through A Clasp or Lobster Claw
When you already have the leather strap prepared, the next step is to slide it through a swivel clasp or lobster claw to secure the connection between the strap and the camera.
A swivel clasp with D-rings or a lobster claw is ideal for camera straps because it allows you to have a full 360 rotation security. It allows the strap to be held in all directions as you move around. So make sure to buy and use this one.
Take one end of your leather strap that you’ve trimmed, and then fold the corners in, covering the rings of the clasp towards the center. Then, slide the folded end through one of your swivel clasps, so about two inches of trim are poked out.
Fold the short end of the trim onto the backside of the strap and glue or sew it near its edge to help secure it in place. Usually, this is at least two inches. Let it dry and Repeat all three steps for the other end of the strap, and set aside. Ensure that it is glued and stitched securely to avoid breaking off when the camera is hooked.
Step 5: Punch Your Holes For The Rivets
Once the strap is glued or stitched through the clasp, you can secure it even more with rivets. Using your mallet and leather hole punch, punch three holes through the layers of your folded leather and trim near each end of the strap. Make sure one is centered near the D-ring and one near each of the bottom corners.
Position your rivet in each hole and use the mallet and rivet setter to set them. Double-check your strap for any excess materials, stains, or noticeable flaws, which you can clean and remove right away.
Step 6: Hook the Strap To Your Camera
Once the strap is secured in your clasp, it’s time to hook it on your camera, try it on, and see if it fits you well or can secure the camera’s weight. It might be hard to clasp the bigger lobster claws to your camera rings, so you can use smaller lanyard clasps to make this possible.
Step 7: Make Final Adjustments
After trying on the camera strap, make adjustments if you must. Get comfortable and attach the camera and strap. Always aim for the best comfort and most secure state you can attach the two.
Step 8: Add Some Decorative Features (Optional Step)
Adding decorative features to your leather strap is optional. If you want to preserve the rustic and natural look of the leather strap, you can surely skip this sep. If you want to pump up the design of your strap, then you can freely do so too by the use of materials you desire.
You can pick any fabric of any color and add this as a decorative feature on your leather strap. Take a piece of fabric and create a unique design that you can add around your leather strap.
Measure your fabric equally; depending on the design you’ve picked, you can use patterns or look for designs on the internet if you have no idea what design you want. Just be careful in picking up a pattern to make sure it is appropriate on your strap.
Cut a piece of fabric using your scissors, check for excess materials, and trim them. Start making your designed pattern and start stitching using your thread and needle and make sure that your leather strap is still visible.
You can also add beads or flowers if you like. You can also add a monogram to make it more personalized.
Perfect Reasons To DIY a Leather Camera Strap
There are many reasons why you should include a leather camera strap on your next DIY project list. The first is for the primary reason that camera straps secure your cameras. Of course, no one wants to misplace our cameras or accidentally drop them because they don’t have straps to help secure and hold them around your neck.
Take time to learn how to make one, the tools and materials you should have, and the best quality leather for the project! It’s one way to save your investment and also add aesthetic to your camera. It can also be a perfect gift for your loved ones, photographer friends, or even your significant other.
Making your own camera strap will also save you a few bucks, but most importantly will improve your skills in leathercraft.
Spending Wisely on Making a DIY Camera Strap
Projects like this don’t actually cause you a lot, especially when you already have some tools and materials at home. You can use your scraps leather straps or purchase enough leather length for the craft if you do.
You have to add extra to your budget when you want to add more aesthetics, but you can definitely stretch that when you want a high-quality result. This price is very reasonable hence makes your camera strap long-lasting and durable because you will be able to budget according to your standards. Keep yourself aesthetically on-trend but also budget-wise!
Genuine leather is one of the cheapest leather you can find but still is classified as “durable” for only $15 to $35. You can buy this in your town at your local leather store.
Full and Top-grain, however, can cost you a little much cause it’s a little pricey for about $40 to even $200 for this type of leather, but if you can buy just about a meter or two, it would just cost you $18.35 to $30.
For your rivets and swivel clasp with D-rings, if it’s a local brand, then it would only cost you about $2.5 to $10.56 per set.
The price of your rivet setter and leather hole puncher would vary depending on the brand and store; however, you can also buy it online; both can only cost you $28 to $35.67.
As for your brass mallet, you can buy it for only $5 or some for the branded ones up to $17.
For your Cutting Mat, these are also quite cheap, and you can buy them for $15 to $22.45.
For your fabric, you can use scrap if you have or your beads perhaps, but in case you don’t have it at home, then you can buy this for $5.
For sure, some of the materials and tools are already found in your house, so try using them instead of buying new ones!
Tips in Making A DIY Leather Camera Strap
First, as I said, prepare all the tools and materials you need, if you don’t have them at home, you don’t have to buy expensive ones. Just go to a local store near you and see what you can find or find some alternatives if they don’t have it there.
Double-check the materials and tools. If they’re complete, make sure the tools are all cleaned up. They might get your leather stained or dirty.
Use appropriate leather for t your strap, and I suggest you use genuine leather. It’s not pricey; however, if you really want a stronger one, you can use full-grain leather or top-grain leather.
Genuine leather is the common choice because it’s soft and comfortable, making them fit in making straps. It is closer to the flesh of the animal, thus making it soft and also strong.
Both full grain and top grain are from the top layer of full-grain leather from the animal skin, thus making it the strongest because of the construction of molecules strongly bonded to each other.
The Final Product
Having the security of your camera while in use need not be pricey. You can opt for DIY that comes at a more budget-friendly cost. Next time you need to secure your camera, you can consider a leather camera strap. So, put that DIY hat on and secure that camera! If you make a leather camera strap on your own, you can surely get a unique design that is easy and fun to make perfect for personal use and as a gift.