setting snaps without a snap setter

i love snaps.

Let me say that again for emphasis: I love snaps. 

however I hate snap setters. It felt like no matter how much time i spent lining the snap up when I clamped it down something went wrong and the whole thing was off. So I would get out my pliers and remove the mangled snap from my now damaged garment and try again. 

then one day I just tried to use the pliers to attach the snaps and it was amazing. having that extra control and the ability to clamp bit by bit (versus all at once) made every snap come out perfectly. so i ditched my snap setter and now the pliers live in my sewing box and are a favorite tool.



  • pliers
  • snaps
  • fabric pen


1. decide on the placement of your snaps, mark with a fabric pen. 

2. Push the 'outside' snap through the placket and line up the female piece.

3. using the pliers slowly clamp the female piece into place. A few small clamps is better than one big one. (Why does that sound dirty?)

4. snap the male piece in and and mark the center of where it hits on the other fabric. 

5. Push the inner spike piece through, encircling the mark so it is as centered as much as possible.

6. Line up the male piece with the inner spike piece. 

7.  using the pliers clamp in place in several places. slowly and gently at first then harder.

8. Admire your work and repeat as necessary.

See wasn't that easy?


aunt maggie