Sick of reaching into your bag for tunes, only to find a sad ball of tangled headphones? If your electronics are out of control—or you’re looking for a more aesthetically-pleasing storage solution—this easy-to-make cord keeper is your ticket to an organized life. And with a bonus built-in keychain, this gift-friendly DIY packs double the punch.
You will need
- 1 in. / 2 cm. wide leather strap, in your choice of color
- Key ring with clasp
- Line 20-size snaps
- 2.5 mm leather hole punch
- Leather shears
- Snap setter
- Cutting mat
- Tape measure
Step 1: Measure and cut strap.
Use a pair of leather shears to cut a 7 inch (or 17 centimeter) length of strap. This will result in a cord keeper that’s ideally sized for headphones, but you can adjust the length of the strap as needed to suit your specific cord keeping needs.
Step 2: Trim one end.
Trim one end of the strap to your desired angle: straight, asymmetrical, or curved. This will become the decorative outer flap of your cord keeper—we cut ours at an angle.
Step 3: Punch the first hole.
Place your strap on the cutting mat. Measure ½ in (1 cm) from the non-angled end, then use the leather hole punch and mallet to punch a hole in the center of the strap. Tip: We recommend placing your mat on a sturdy surface, like a work table, before punching.
Step 4: Punch the second hole.
With the strap lying flat on your work surface, fold the end with the hole you just punched over by 1.5 in (4 cm) and place the leather punch through the hole. Use the mallet to punch a second hole through the other side of the strap.
Step 5: Punch the third hole.
Unfold the strap, and measure ½ in (1 cm) up from the angled end. Use the leather hole punch and mallet to punch a hole in the center of the strap.
Step 6: Add the first snap piece.
With the dyed side of the leather facing out, slip your strap through the key ring. Fold the top 1.5 in (4 cm) of the strap over so the first two holes that you punched line up. Take the eyelet piece of your snap (also called the male piece) and push it through the holes from back to front.
Step 7: Set the first snap piece.
Place the strap on the concave side of the snap setting anvil with the eyelet sitting atop the anvil. Place the stud piece (the top half of the eyelet) over the eyelet post and position the snap setter over the stud. Swiftly and with confidence (you can do it!) whack the snap setter with the mallet.
Step 8: Add the second snap piece.
Place the button piece of the snap (also called the female piece) through the third hole at the opposite end of the strap. Be sure the smooth side of the button piece is facing out.
Step 9: Set the second snap piece.
Position the strap snap-side down over the concave side of the anvil. Place the socket piece of the snap over the button post and position the snap setter over the socket. Whack the snap setter with the mallet.
All set! Snap some wires into your new cord keeper, throw your keys on the key ring, and congratulate yourself on your impressive organizational prowess.
Process photos by Erik Valind.