Repair Snaps?

Updated on May 07, 2008
A.H. asks from Goshen, IN
26 answers

Hello Mummies!
I have a quick question, my son has several outfits/pairs of bib overalls on which the snaps between the legs no longer hold. There is nothing else wrong with these clothes and I would very much like to be able to repair them as opposed to simply getting rid of them or cutting them up for patches. I did ask my own mother about ideas, she said that since they are rivet-type snaps they cannot be removed without severely damaging the material, and she knew of no other option. Does anyone out there have any other suggestions?
Thank you!
A.

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J.A.

answers from Cleveland on

Hi A.,
I have had the same issue with some outfits. My sister recently salvaged a pair of jean shorts that the zipper had come apart on by replacing it with sew-on velcro....it works great and now my son can still wear them! I plan on trying to replace the snaps with velcro as well. You could sew the velcro right over the snap without removing the riveted part.
If I get it done soon I'll let you know how it works, but it sounds good on paper!

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J.F.

answers from Cleveland on

I bet a shoe maker could fix them. I have a special needs child that has a special stroller and one of the snaps broke off, he was able to fix it and you can't even tell that it has been repaired.
I don't know where you live, but this shoe maker is in Amherst.
Jenn.......

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S.T.

answers from Columbus on

Can you leave the snap in place but sew a little piece of velco next to it? It will look like the snap is what's still holding it (which is cute) but the velcro should do the job. They have no-sew velco now too. I think you iron it on, and then as you wash it, the adhesive actually gets stronger.

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A.C.

answers from Indianapolis on

I would just sew them. I am talking about the whole seam shut. Of course, if your son is still wearing a diaper, that may make things a little more challenging.

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A.C.

answers from Muncie on

I fixed several pairs of garage sales finds this way...and it's such a simple fix! Lay the clothes out on a hard surface. Take a hammer and gently tap the "nipple" part of the snap. A few taps should widen the "nipple" so it fits tighter and holds the snap together! Make sure not to tap too much, because you can't fix it if you over do it! Wahlah! This tip came from my mom! Good luck!

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S.F.

answers from Fort Wayne on

Put velcro on top of the snaps. Buy some velcro, cut the strips in half to make them narrow. I forget what they call this other product... basically it is a piece of paper that you iron onto the fabric and peal off the backing. It will make the velcro stick instead of sewing it all on. Or you could make a few stitches down the britches of the clothing just to tack on the velcro.

D.B.

answers from Cincinnati on

How old is your son? Would it be reasonable to just whip stitch the legs closed, and take the whole overalls down for the potty?

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D.Y.

answers from Cincinnati on

Hi A.
A sure way to help repair the snaps is to lay the clothes down on a hard surface (like concrete on the porch) (or basement floor where washer is). Take a small hammer and just lightly tap the snap head (the part that goes into the hole).
What you are doing is flatening the head just a little to spread it wider. If you flatten it too much you will ruin the snap altogether.
Hope this solves your problem.
D. Y.

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S.T.

answers from Columbus on

Can you leave the snap in place but sew a little piece of velco next to it? It will look like the snap is what's still holding it (which is cute) but the velcro should do the job. They have no-sew velco now too. I think you iron it on, and then as you wash it, the adhesive actually gets stronger.

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C.W.

answers from Cincinnati on

If you are very careful they can come apart. I have done this. Also another option might be to try to match with the snaps with ones from a fabric store like Joann"s or Hancocks. Another place which might have the right size is a place in Cincinnati called Banasches (I don't think that's spelled right). Not the fabric store but a supplier for seamstresses and alteration stores. You have to buy in large amounts but I bet your friends are also having the same trouble. You could show them hoe to remove the broken snap and sell them what they need to repair them.

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J.F.

answers from Cleveland on

I bet a shoe maker could fix them. I have a special needs child that has a special stroller and one of the snaps broke off, he was able to fix it and you can't even tell that it has been repaired.
I don't know where you live, but this shoe maker is in Amherst.
Jenn.......

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D.K.

answers from Indianapolis on

HOw about removing the snaps (if you can) and sew on some velcro??....or sew velcro on top of them.

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B.L.

answers from Lima on

I had this problem also. You need to take a piece of board, open the snaps, lay the side with the middle out facing upwards on the board. Then take a hammer and gently tap the center. Try fastening, if not tight enough tap some more. This helps the snap fit tighter into the socket, but if done too much or too hard it flattens the snap and it won't fit in the socket.

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M.B.

answers from Lima on

When I've had this problem I simply sew the crotch shut & use them.

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S.E.

answers from Cleveland on

It depends on how much it would show per outfit. If it is a onsie that would be covered by pants or what have you you could sew new snaps between the old snaps.

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C.M.

answers from Indianapolis on

I saw you have had only one that gives you a quick fix and I agree with Sandra....take a hammer and on the male portion of the snap(the one that sticks out) lighty hammer it to make it flatter and wider...it doesnt take much and if youy need more just hit it once or twice more...my mom used to do this for us kids when we were little and I have done it several times for my boys....good luck.

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S.J.

answers from Dayton on

Try sewing velcro over the snaps. It works on space suits, why not kids clothing.

God Bless,

S.

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C.K.

answers from Canton on

I can appreciate your resourcefulness and wanting to extend the life of your son's clothes. I haven't done this personally, but have you considered some velcro on either side of the broken snaps? I t would hold pant leg together without making major changes to the garment.
C.

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C.B.

answers from Lafayette on

i have a snap press if you want me to fix them for you. it's very easy and takes only a minute per outfit.

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K.W.

answers from Indianapolis on

My daughter had a pair of bibs that I loved that did this. I just sat on the couch with a needle & thread & sewed them shut. It's not as convieniet as having the snaps to open when it's time for a diaper change, but it spares the clothing and gives them longer life. ;o)
Hope this helps.

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L.B.

answers from Toledo on

I vote for either sewing them shut or sewing hook and eye between each snap. Good luck.

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K.R.

answers from Steubenville on

I would suggest that you sew the sems on the pants shut. That would elimanate the coming apart of them. And if you aren't handy with the sewing machine then they sale this no sew tape that you iron on that is just as good as sewing them.

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S.A.

answers from Kokomo on

You can also buy strips with snaps already on them. They are generally white with plastic snaps but can be sewn in like velco and the fabric part is much softer.

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K.M.

answers from Fort Wayne on

i would try adding a hook and eye between snaps. My mother in law did that with one of my niece's dresses and it worked beautifully.

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J.L.

answers from Cleveland on

just an ideal: you can remove those snap and replace them. take the overalls to the fabric store. someone there will be glad to assist you with your repair.

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D.S.

answers from Fort Wayne on

Sometimes you can GENTLY tap the “male” side of the snap with a hammer to widen it so that it fits into the “female” side of the snap more snugly. This doesn’t work all of the time, it can actually make it worse, but if they aren’t working now it’s worth a try before pitching them. Just make sure you do it GENTLY…you’d be surprised how easy it is to flatten a snap!! Hope that helps!

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S.B.

answers from Toledo on

If the snaps are just no longer holding together, but everything else is intact, try taking a hammer and gently but firmly hitting the part that is the snap. This will widen it and make it hold together when you snap it in. I did this to several of my kids snaps and they worked like new again.

Good luck,
S.

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J.L.

answers from Columbus on

If you can't fix the snaps, maybe you could sew strips of velcro over them? Just make sure the hooky side is facing out so it doesn't bug your little one's legs.

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J.A.

answers from Cleveland on

Hi A.,
I have had the same issue with some outfits. My sister recently salvaged a pair of jean shorts that the zipper had come apart on by replacing it with sew-on velcro....it works great and now my son can still wear them! I plan on trying to replace the snaps with velcro as well. You could sew the velcro right over the snap without removing the riveted part.
If I get it done soon I'll let you know how it works, but it sounds good on paper!

Next question: How to Tighten Snaps on Articles of Clothing?