How to use Prym Vario Pliers

Learn how to use Prym Vario pliers to add snap fastenings to your garments and bags.
Prym vario pliers press studs (1)

Prym Vario Pliers are great for adding plastic or metal snaps to your projects. However, they can look a little daunting when you first use them so we thought we’d share a tutorial to help you get to grips with them.

How tp use snap fastenings

First you need to get a matching set of snaps. Each set of snaps needs to make a male snap (the one with the sticky out bit) and a female snap (the one with a hole). You then want a round smooth top to go with the female part of the snap, and a flat base with a narrow sticky up bit to go with the male part. So in the image above the 2 top parts form the male side of the snap, and the 2 bottom pieces form the female side.  If you have a pack with lots of different sizes of snaps them put the 2 female parts together, and same with the 2 male parts to check they fit, to ensure have the right sizes.

Using Prym Vario pliers

You then need to add the correct plastic pieces to the pliers. The cup piece should be large enough for the smooth snap top to snugly fit inside. You can easily pull off any pieces you already have fitted so you can snap them around for the correct ones. The instructions will tell you which pieces you need for which kind of snaps. Now make a mark on each of your fabric pieces to indicate where you want your snaps to go. Our chalk liner works well for this.

how to sew snap fastenings

Using a seam ripper cut a small hole where each mark is, this makes it easier to fit your snap.

How to use metal snap fastenings

Poke the spike of the snap through the hole you made (as you can see above this is poking through to the wrong side of the fabric), then place the other side of that part of the snap on top of the spike.

A guide t Prym Vario Pliers

Put the pliers over to the snap and squeeze really hard, you can give them a tap with a mallet if you need extra force. You will feel the 2 pieces of the snap clip together.

Bag making tips - using snap fastenings

You now have one side of your snap fastening applied. Repeat these steps for the other 2 snap pieces with your second hole.

Using Prym Vario pliers

Now your snap fastening is finished and ready to use. Once you’ve done the first one and realised how simple it is you’ll be wanting to add snaps to everything!  Much simpler than making button holes.

Order your Prym Vario Pliers here, and metal snaps here.