Introduction: Softball or Baseball Key Chain

Everyone who is a baseball/ softball player, fan, or coach knows the feeling of having a prized ball in their possession. This keychain will be made directly from a baseball or softball itself which may please a wide audience as people can turn their home run balls from a pro game, or their child's first hit ball into a keepsake to cherish with them throughout everyday life. Typically, people store their home run or game balls in a glass case, but with the DIY keychain, baseball/ softball phonetics can bring their precious memorabilia with them wherever they go.

WARNING: The making of this project includes sharp materials such as a needle, box cutter and scissors. Users should practice extreme caution and it is recommended that users be of age 15 and older. Younger users should consult the supervision and assistance of an adult.

MATERIALS: Box cutter, Scissors, softball or baseball, read thread, threading needle, key ring

Step 1: Cutting the Laces

Use the box cutter and cut the baseball stitches directly along the middle of the seam of the baseball’s two sections of leather. Be careful not to cut away from the seam and damage one of the stitching holes as you will need to utilize them later. Separate the two leather pieces from the ball once all of the stitching has been cut.

Step 2: Removing Stitching

Pick out all of the loose stitching still stuck in the leather. It may help to use tweezers to get little pieces out, but using hands will work too. Users should have one piece of leather with no pieces of stitching left remaining in the stitching holes to begin the assembling process.

Step 3: Inserting Key Ring

If the key ring being used has a smaller diameter than the width of the center of the leather piece, create two horizontal holes next to one another. This can be done using a very sharp tool like the box cutter. The leather is strong and it will be hard to poke holes through and so this step will require some amount of strength by the user. Once the two holes are created, take the key ring and weave the key ring through the two holes. Fold the leather in half to allow the ends to meet (Hamburger way fold). BASEBALL KEY RING DIFFERENCE: (If doing this on a baseball and the key ring being used has a larger diameter than the width of the center of the leather, you may insert the leather through the key ring and fold it in half.)

Step 4: Starting Threading Process

Take the embroidery needle and about 2 yards of red thread. Thread the thread through the needle and tie a small tight knot. if the knot becomes loose while threading in step 5, continue tightening it. At the directly center lacing hole on one side of the key ring at the top,thread the needle and thread through until you are close to the end of your thread and tie a very strong knot (double or triple) through. This will be the starting point of the threading process and directly opposite to this hole will be the ending point. (Note: the threading holes in baseball are smaller than softballs and may require a thinner thread)

Step 5: Continue Threading

Be sure to fold the leather directly in half to even and line up the lacing holes.Thread the embroidery floss through the hole under the one where the beginning knot is. Insert it fully through this hole so it pokes out of the back side parallel lacing hole that is lined up, but slightly diagonal, directly behind it. Then, wrap the floss back around to the front side across the seam and insert the needle and thread into the next hole, and wrap it around again. Continue this process until the last empty hole is reached.

Step 6: Complete Threading

When the last hole is reached on the opposite side of the starting hole, insert the needle through and tie a knot. Doing a double knot will ensure more stability. If there is excess thread after the final knot is made, scissors can be used to cut excess thread

Step 7: Congrats!

Congrats! You have made a softball/ baseball key chain. To further customize your new accessory, permanent marker can be used to include custom names and numbers or even placing team stickers on the key ring would be another way to personalize the item. This step is completely optional.