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Sew a Needlebook Lanyard Tutorial

How to sew a needlebook lanyard.  Sometimes we want to make a cute little something for ourselves or to give to a fellow sewist who might not make enough things for herself.

I rarely sew for myself, which is a shame, because I have so many ideas in my head. But this time I decided to sew a needlebook lanyard, so that I’d have access to my pins and needles while working on my “while I’m waiting” hand-stitching projects.

You know the kind – the little projects to bring to the doctor’s office, to sew in the stands while waiting to see your child make that next big goal, or in front of the TV.

I always wound up sticking the needle in my pants leg because I didn’t have anywhere to put it!

I sewed this needlebook lanyard a few months ago and didn’t make a tutorial for it (shocking, I know). Because my sewing supplies are in various boxes and parts and pieces while I’m remodeling my sewing room, I’ve created graphic step-outs instead.

(Also note that this shouldn’t be used while using your sewing machine…you don’t want to catch the needlebook in your machine and drag your neck in. Not fun. So, this needlebook lanyard is to be used when you’re hand-stitching only).

What you’ll need

* A fat quarter of two different colors of fabric
* A bit of a third fabric for the ring tab
* A bit of muslin
* This heart template
* An accessories set with a D-ring and a hook
* A 4″ piece of 3/8″ wide ribbon
* A bit of ric-rack, if desired
* A bit of fusible fleece
* Double-sided fusible web
* Freezer paper
* 1 yard of ribbon that coordinates with your project
* 1 small button
* 1 snap set
* Sewing machine and general sewing notions

Cutting Instructions:

Follow along with the two graphics, below.

When cutting the piece for your ring tab you may use the dimensions shown below or see this post on cutting ring tabs in any size, depending on the D-ring size you have available.


Next, stitch pairs of your small rectangles together as shown below with right sides together, along one long edge each (the pieces should match; I’ve just offset them in the graphic so you can see the two layers, below.)

Press open, with the seam allowance to one side.

Trace the heart template on freezer paper, and complete the the directions as shown below. There will be space between the sides of the heart and the corners of the fabric, to account for the seam allowance.

When stitching the heart onto the square, use a fun decorative stitch! We never use enough of those decorative stitches on our machines anyway. Now is the time!

Next, fuse your fusible fleece to the back of the square with the heart and the square that will become the back of the needlebook lanyard. Connect the front and back together with ribbon, as described in the second graphic, below.

Now you’ll stitch your ring tab and follow the directions below to complete the main portion of your needlebook lanyard.

(Sorry about the sad-looking D-ring graphic. I know, it’s really sorry and looks like a crooked piece of string. But hopefully you’ll get the idea!)

In the second graphic below, the pieces are offset for graphic purposes only – in “real life” you’ll line up the rectangles along all four sides. Give everything a good press when you’re finished.

You’re almost done with the needlebook!

Now turn your needlebook right side out, and close it up with a simple ladder/slip stitch.

Use pinking shears on all four sides of your muslin pages, then open the book and stitch them through the center inside, as shown in the first graphic, below.

Finally, stitch on your snaps (I forgot to add one to the left side below of the first graphic, but you’ll need one there as well as one on the other side, which *is* shown).

Now add a button to the front cover. The button on the front is really just decorative, but I like decorating!

To make the lanyard portion, simply stitch your ribbon onto the hook part of your ring/hook assembly, and you’re all set!

As you can see below, I added a little bit of ric rac on the inside for a little pizzazz too. Feel free to embellish as you desire!

I hoped you enjoyed learning how to sew a needlebook lanyard! 


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