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Creative Uses for Eyelets and Grommets in Sewing

Grommets and eyelets are usually more functional and practical than aesthetic, but there’s no reason they can’t be used to stunning effect! They’re versatile, come in various sizes, shapes, and materials, and are a cinch to install.

The only real limit on what you can do with eyelets and grommets in sewing is the amount of space you have in your fabric!

Why Garments Use Grommets

Grommets make fabric stronger in key areas. Think of a flag flapping in the breeze. Ropes are holding the flag through a few holes, and without reinforcement, those holes would tear apart quickly. Grommets are a pair of metal rings pressed together through a hole in a piece of fabric so it won’t fray and rip.

Even heavy materials such as leather and vinyl need reinforcement! Take a look at a leather shoe, for example. Chances are that the laces aren’t winding through bare leather but rather small eyelets that let the laces run through smoothly without damaging the shoe’s materials.

What Are Eyelets?

Similar to grommets, eyelets also protect fabric in strategic areas. However, eyelets are typically only used in thin, lightweight fabrics. Unlike grommets, eyelets are made as a single piece. When flattened into the fabric, it spreads out to cover and hold the material around the hole.

Eyelets are typically much smaller than grommets as well. While grommets can be as large as 3 inches, or even more in custom applications, eyelets are generally 3/16” long, with an exterior diameter of .071” and an interior diameter of .054”.

Installing Grommets and Eyelets

Using a punch or fabric cutter, create a hole of the appropriate size in the fabric or material. You don’t want to use scissors because the hole you create must be a perfect circle.

Then, using a handsetter or press, fuse the two parts of the grommet or flatten the eyelet.

Which Grommets or Eyelets Are Best?

This answer depends on the project! Will the grommets or eyelets be functional or just aesthetic? You’ll need to determine your grommets or eyelets' size, shape, and material. Where will you place them on your fabric, leather, vinyl, or other material?

The more you plan ahead of time, the fewer materials you’ll buy and the fewer mistakes you’ll make!

Projects for Grommets and Eyelets

Here’s the fun part! What will you use grommets and eyelets for in your garments or other creations? Let’s explore some options.

1. Give Leather Texture

Leather jackets and belts are cool, but grommets are fantastic if you want them to be eye-catching. Strategic placement of brass or faded steel grommets can give your leather a steampunk vibe, or you can use grommets to give your leather texture. Belts can be spruced up with intricate designs and varied-sized grommets.

2. Bring Old Handbags Back to Life

Was that handbag you bought just a little boring? Think of a cool pattern and put some eyelets or grommets in. You can even alternate grommet materials for more visual interest, alternating between gold and silver or black and chrome.

3. Hot Rivets

Your jeans have rivets; why stop there? Additionally, rivets give you more visual options than grommets and eyelets, with the ability to get rivets with abalone shells, pearls, and even rhinestones. You can replace the boring ones in your garments or add new ones!

4. Do Your Shoes Next!

Do you know what would make an old pair of Converse look super slick? Yes, more grommets! They’re made of canvas and super easy to punch holes in. You could also take a plain pair of leather boots and spruce them up with some well-placed grommets of opposing colors. Light gray? Go with black. Dark brown boots? Definitely brass!

Craft Your Projects with Supplies from Goldstar Tools

To make your projects come to life, you need the right materials. Grommet and eyelet installation tools, fabric, leather, and other materials are all a quick order away! If you have questions about what tools and supplies are available or want more ideas on projects, contact Goldstar Tool today!