Ever since we first started designing the Yanta Overalls, we knew we had to make a pair of traditional overalls out of denim, with classic overall hardware. We love a button closure, of course, but there is just something so nostalgic and timeless about overall buckles! Today we want to show you how to install overalls hardware.
Helen recently finished her classic denim Yantas, which we just had to share on the blog. You can see them in their full glory here.
If you are intimidated by installing this sort of hardware, don’t be; like many things in sewing, installing overalls hardware is actually pretty easy and straightforward when you break it down into steps.
There are lots of different variations on overalls buckles and buttons; some have a separate piece for strap shortening, some have it all built into the buckle, etc. We used one-piece overalls hardware for our Yantas. Closet Case Patterns has a fantastic tutorial on installing overall buckles for their Jenny Overalls pattern that uses two-piece overalls hardware. Make sure to check it out!
For this tutorial, you will need:
Overalls hardware (buckles and buttons)
A hard surface for hammering (we used our mini anvil, but you can use a cast-iron skillet)
First, make sure your Yanta straps are the right length for you. We lengthened ours by 10″ from the original pattern piece to make sure we had tons of wiggle room.
First, slide the buckle onto your strap by inserting the strap under the first bar and over the middle slider.
Next, flip your strap over to the wrong side and insert the end of the strap back into the middle bar of the slider. Make sure to give yourself some slack to ensure it’s easy to pull the strap through.
Pull the strap though, and you have installed your first buckle! Repeat for the second buckle.
Once both buckles are installed on the Yanta straps, we can install the buttons. These buttons are constructed in the same way as a jeans button; they consist of a front button piece and a ribbed post that pops in from the back of the garment to secure the button.
First, mark where your buttons will go. The buttons should be inserted in the corner of the bib, just inside the topstitching. It’s very important that the buttons are as even as possible, so be careful when measuring and marking where the buttons should go!
Before inserting the button, we need to create a little hole in the bib for the post of the button. Carefully insert your awl into the bib on the backside of the marking that you made. Remember that the awl is sharp, so please use caution! Slide the bib up the awl about halfway to create a hole that is the proper size.
Once you’ve punched both buttonholes in the bib, it’s time to hammer in the buttons. Insert each post into the hole you made from the backside, so that the pointy end is coming out of the front of the bib.
Set your button flat side down on your hammering surface. Gently place the pointy end of the post into the hole on the back of the button, and hammer in place. Repeat for the second button.
That’s it! The overalls hardware is installed and ready for you to wear! We just left the ends of our straps loose, but you can shorten them once you are sure about the length and secure them in place with a few hand stitches.
We just love these Yantas with overalls hardware! For more pics of Helen wearing her denim Yantas, check out this post here.
Do you have any tips for installing overalls hardware? Let us know in the comments!
I find I damage the jeans buttons if I hammer them. I squeeze them on gently with a small craft vice that has foam jaws. Lovely result!
That sounds like a great method!
That looks like some nice heavyweight hardware! Any suggestions on where to pick up good quality hardware for this project? I’m in Canada. The overalls are over-the-top cute!
We got ours at a local craft store, Dressew!
Hello Helen. Quickly popping in to let you know my experience is that sewing dungarees is the perfect, gentle introduction to sewing your first pair of jean. Once you’ve got this done, you’ll approach jean sewing with so much more confidence. Love your site. So inspiring. Warmly, Ally x
Thank you so much Ally! So glad to hear you enjoyed sewing Yanta!
Hello! I loooove this version of the Yanta overalls and really want to make my own. Do you know what width overalls hardware you used? When I measure the pattern pieces, it seems the strap is around 1 1/2″ at its attachment point, but I have the choice between hardware made for 1″, 1 1/4″ or 1 5/8″ straps. I’m ordering online (of course), so I really want to get this right. Thanks in advance!
Thanks Jeanne! I used 1 1/4″ wide hardware for mine. The strap it snug which helps it all stay together. You can also adjust the width of the strap to accommodate the hardware you end up getting!
When I use an awl to make a hole, I place a piece of soft wood under the item and hammer into the wood. Safe and effective! Actually, I use wood instead of an anvil when I hammer snaps, jeans buttons etc. That way, the surface of the closure isn’t harmed (at least, not in my experience!)
Those are great tips! Thanks for sharing, Maura 🙂
Can you reuse the button (strap) by removing and reinstall it?
I do not think the metal buttons can be removed and re-installed again unfortunatley.
I’m so glad I actually checked your hacks because I was writing an epic poem basically asking if the yantas could become more workcore. Of course you have the answer right here! Yay!
Yay! So happy we were able to answer your question. Happy sewing!
hi Helen, when you used the hardware buckle with 1 1/4 inch, were your straps still 1 1/2 inch across. i want to get buckles too but i dont think my 1/12 inch straps will sit ok in 1/14 inch buckles, these are my 5th pair of yanta overalls. i have a number of overall patterns but this is the one i always come back to.
My straps were still 1.5″ across and it was a bit tight – I had to kind of smush them in. You can taper the straps further to get the right size for the hardware you have on hand 🙂
lol i know ZERO ab sewing! Curious ab biball buckles & landed here. No offense but found ppls comments as interesting & informative as the blog! You’ve got some smart talented fans! If a “virgin” like myself can understand & enjoy posts, it MUST BE GOOD!
Ps whoever made comment ab hammering on a cast iron skillet – brilliant! Might’ve been blogger? TY! Could’ve used that just lately … now i know for next time! TY ALL!!