Yoga Mat Holder from Old Pants + Strap from Old Belts

First, I want to welcome anyone who has found my website through meeting me at Penguicon this weekend!  It was lovely to meet all of you, and I’m happy to answer any questions you have about leatherworking, weaving, sewing, or any of the other things you see around this blog!  Please check out my tab about leatherworking commissions.  I love making custom creations for people, and doing repairs, mundane and bizarre alike.  I am also slowly working on merchandise for an Etsy shop (around searching for a part-time science/engineering/admin job, doing custom leatherwork, and lingering recovery from grieving – another topic I’m glad to talk about, with anyone who needs it, as we keep too much hidden in our culture). I also blog twice a week (usually Mondays and Thursdays at noon EST), so come back often.  🙂

Today’s post is about yoga equipment.  I started doing yoga about two weeks ago (so I know next to nothing, besides the fact that it is HARD, ach!), based on my doctor’s recommendation that I need more core strength to get rid of my lingering back pain from pulling a muscle last summer.  (What is this getting older stuff?  I don’t like this part of it…)  I already had a yoga mat, from doing it a wee bit a few years ago, but I wanted a way to easily carry it as I walk to the yoga studio a few blocks from home.  I also wanted a strap to use at home, to occasionally do some of the poses taught to me in classes.

I made both of these for very little (under $5 each).

I made the yoga mat holder from an old pair of pants that were sitting in my scrap bin after they had ripped too many times to repair them again.  It was so easy!  I cut a straight line up from one pant leg to the waistline, and sewed it shut into a long tube.  The top was already a drawstring waist, so I altered it so the drawstring came out twice on this half of the waistband (since the other half was cut off and is back in the scrap bin), and tied it off.  The top is now a simple drawstring opening.

The mat holder also has a built-in pocket, from being pants.  It’s easy to carry my keys with me to class.

I cut off the bottom hem of the pant leg, as it would be too bulky when folded in the next step.  I gathered the remaining material, folding it over a few times, and sewed part of a leather belt to it.  The leather belt was found at a thrift store (Value World, in Ann Arbor, often has a lot of belts available) for under $5.  Before sewing the belt to the material, hold up the belt to your body and figure out how long the various halves of the belt should be for it to fit comfortably as you walk.  Then cut the belt at the points where you want to connect it to the holder.

I sewed the other part of the belt to the back of the drawstring top.

This project took less than an hour to create, and the only real price was for the thrifted belt.  It’s comfortable to carry, looks pretty good for such a quick project, and has a built-in pocket for holding keys!

I also made my own yoga strap.

I bought four cloth belts from Value World for $1.10 each.  I probably only needed three – this strap is very long.

I cut the ends off of them, leaving the rings on the widest one and the finished end on another one.  Then I overlapped them ~half an inch and zigzag stitched them together.

These belts are slightly stretchier than the yoga strap I’ve used at the studio, and the double rings don’t hold it closed as well – it will slowly slip through the rings with enough pressure applied in a yoga pose.  To fix this, when I’m in the correct pose, I tie a loop with the extra length below the rings – no more slipping.

Now for the adventure in trying to photograph me using the yoga mat holder!  I’m still not very good at photographing myself…

From this angle you can see the holder on my back…

Smile at myself for the camera!

Oh, hey, light!  That’s a thing.

Now that I’m done laughing at (with?) myself for my inability to take these photos…  I hope you learned just how easy it can be to make simple yoga equipment, says the person who knows next-to-nothing about yoga (yet).  So far the stuff is working!  🙂  ~Kell

Author: Wynter

I'm a scientist from Ann Arbor, MI! Leatherworker. Sewist. Exuberant gardener. Board game addict. SCAdian. Huge nerd. :)

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