ID Badge Holder or Luggage Tag




Introduction: ID Badge Holder or Luggage Tag

About: HTMF= Havin' Too Much Fun

The attached Corel file and/or Scalable Vector Graphic (SVG) File can be used to laser cut two panels from scrap leather which can be sewn together to make an ID badge holder or a luggage tag.

This is a nice project for pieces of scrap leather as small as 3X5 inches (I use scrap from a local upholstery shop)

When sewn together, the two pieces make a holder for a standard credit card sized ID card (2.125 X 3.370 inch).

Note: For those of you who work with different software, I’ve been told you can use Inkscape to open this file and save into a different format.

While US standard business cards (2 X 3.5 inch) are narrower (by approximately 1/8 inch) and longer (by approximately 1/8 inch) the plastic cover inside the holder will hold a business card in place so the holder can be used as a luggage tag.

Step 1: ID Badge Holder or Luggage Tag

I use this holder for my TechShop ID, my work ID and a luggage tag with my business card.

The holder does not interfere with the proximity encoder inside the ID cards used to ‘check in’.

I use the eyelet holes to hold a thumb drive and keys

The center hole between the eyelets holds a standard ID badge clip.

Note: I've found that if the badge clip is snagged, the clip usually breaks before the leather tears.

The pattern takes about 3 minutes to cut on the laser and another 20 minutes to sew together.

I’ve made them for a couple dozen people and they wear them every day.

Step 2: ID Badge Holder or Luggage Tag: Materials

You will need:

A laser to cut the leather

I have access to a 60Watt Universal Laser at the TechShop

Q: Can you print the pattern and cut and punch the holes by hand?

A: . . . . Sure . . . . Go ahead.


One piece of leather 6 X 5 or Two Pieces approximately 3 X 5 Inches each

Note: Each piece can be cut separately.

I use various kinds and colors

Veg Tanned 8-9 oz Tooling leather makes a STRONG badge holder / luggage tag.

Step 3: ID Badge Holder or Luggage Tag: Materials

You will Need:

Lacing cord (string/ twine/ tape)

  • About 4.5 feet
  • I use MIL-T-43435B wax lacing tape because its nylon, flat, VERY strong and melts (hence the lighter in the photo) to seal the ends

Clear plastic cover

  • I cut these to size from the lids of re-cycled clear plastic food containers

3/16 Eyelet / Grommet

  • And a tool to swage the end

Sewing needle big enough to handle the lacing cord.

  • Note: The holes for the cord are sized to accommodate the larger eye of a leather sewing needle

Step 4: ID Badge Holder or Luggage Tag: Assembly

Put it together:

After the leather has been cut, you will have a front and a back for each badge holder

The laser burns the edges which leaves black smudges everywhere.

So, it’s a good idea to clean the edges before sewing the pieces together.

I use alcohol and an old shop rag.

Step 5: ID Badge Holder or Luggage Tag: Assembly


Thread the needle

Tie a knot at the other end of the cord

Start the cord through the inside hole at the top of the bottom layer

Note: The two inside holes in the bottom layer are meant to be start/finish spots for the string

Step 6: ID Badge Holder or Luggage Tag: Assembly


Pull the cord through to the knot and then burn the end down to the leather

Squash the hot soft nylon down on to the leather (its hot, use the back of a spoon).

Step 7: ID Badge Holder or Luggage Tag: Assembly


Start sewing

Sew hole to hole or around the edge as shown. What ever looks best to you.

You can double stitch or go back and forth. The size of the holes accommodate more than one stitch per hole.

Step 8: ID Badge Holder or Luggage Tag: Assembly


Sew all the way around,

At the end, run the needle under the top and into the inside hole in the bottom panel on the other side

Knot it and melt the end.

Squash the end

Step 9: ID Badge Holder or Luggage Tag: Assembly


Use the grommet /eyelet pliers (or anvil if that’s what you have) and crimp the eyelets into place

Step 10: ID Badge Holder or Luggage Tag: Assembly


Cut the plastic cover lens from a piece of (food service container) plastic and insert inside the holder

I usually trace a credit card with a Sharpie and cut inside the lines

Step 11: ID Badge Holder or Luggage Tag

Insert your ID card to make a badge holder or a business card to make it a luggage tag.

Add clips, rings for keys, or Thumb drives or . .


The design is symmetrical.

You can add another window panel to the back and make the ID two sided.

Or add a half panel on the back to hold a credit card..

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