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A Beginners Guide to Snaps

Posted by Diaper Sewing Supplies on

If you are new to using plastic snaps, they can seem really confusing at first. Never fear: here is a beginners guide to understanding snaps.

What is a snap?
A snap consists of a socket (the female part), a stud (the male part), and two caps (to hold the socket and stud on to the fabric). This is better explained with a picture:

You apply a snap to fabric with snap pliers. To do this, you squeeze together a cap+socket AND THEN a cap+stud. It takes two plier squeezes to put on a snap, one for each side. When you have done this, the socket and stud will click together. 

See that prong sticking up from the cap? It pokes through the fabric and into the socket or stud. When you squeeze the snap pliers, that cap gets mashed down into a little flattened disk. It's plastic, so it is smoosh-able. Once that prong is flattened, the snap is on good.

What is KAM?
KAM is a high quality brand of plastic snaps - for years KAM has been the gold standard for snaps in the cloth diaper industry. KAM was around long before Babyville came along, and Babyville products may not be compatible. The KAM brand is made in China and is Oeko-Tex 100 certified safe for baby products.

How do I remove a snap?
KAM snaps are really durable, which means they are tough to remove. If you can break off the circular bead of the squashed cap prong, the snap will come off. Ways to do this are: use a tiny eyeglass screwdriver to pry it off, or a soldering iron to melt it. Another method is to squeeze and crack the snap with pliers, but your fabric may get damaged.

What if the snap doesn't click tight together?
Be sure to mash down hard enough so that the cap prong becomes a flattened disk. This is particularly important if you are applying snaps to thin layers of fabric. If the center sticks up too high, the snap cannot click together.

Once you get a little practice applying snaps, the whole thing becomes much more clear. It's really very easy. This is one of those situations where you kind of have to try it to see for yourself how they work. That's why we include some free snaps with our snap pliers - so you can get the hang of it.

Diaper Sewing Supplies sells KAM snaps in complete sets and by separate parts. This way you can get just the quantity and colors you need.

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