Introduction: Utility Suspenders

The Problem: Stuff.

I like to carry all sorts of things, and my pockets usually contain coins, keys, a pocketknife, a wallet, and miscellaneous papers or a small notepad. When I try to add reading glasses, a pen, a flashlight, a cellphone, my pockets fill up significantly and I worry about scuffing my cellphone or unwittingly dialing someone. I also carry a table wherever I go because I can use it to show folks examples of the photo restoration work I do (see if you're curious). But carrying a tablet means I have one hand free instead of two, and there's a great risk I'll set my tablet down and lose it.

I wear suspenders, and loadbearing suspenders work for the military, so I decided to make my own Bat-Utility-Suspenders.

Step 1: Assemble Materials and Sew on Loops

I used 2" Perry Suspenders (hint: they hook to your belt and are roughly a million times better than those clippy ones), and 3/4" Velcro and black thread. I used a sewing machine, and needed scissors (and tweezers and a magnifying glass made needle-threading much easier).

Measure from about armpit height to a couple of inches above where the adjusting piece is, and cut four lengths of velcro. Cut two lengths about five inches long, also.

Sew the velcro as close to the edge as you can (see photo). The long pieces run from up about two inches above the adjuster, and the two short pieces are sewn as low on the center back suspender strap as you can.

Step 2:

Sew a pocket for a cell phone, digital camera, or whatever else you carry, using elastic from an older pair of suspenders, or you can buy elastic from the yardage store. Pay close attention to which side gets the Velcro, as it loops around and faces away from your phone. See photos.

Step 3:

Voila! I added loops for a pen, flashlight, and glasses (the loops for the glasses went around the front of the suspenders; everything else I prefer to be behind the suspender straps.

I sewed a couple of strips of "hook" Velcro to the outside of my tablet case, and it rides nicely at the small of my back. The weight of the tablet is supported by the belt, and it's kept in place by the Velcro.

The cell phone, flashlight, pen, and glasses are all conveniently in reach, and I am not dependent on an overloaded shirt pocket any more (lets me wear T-Shirts and still have all my gear handy, too).

This may be a better project for large girth older guys, and it reeks of 'nerd'. But it worked well for me. Yes, I'm a large-girth older nerd guy. It's kept me safe from loose women for well over a half-century.