How to Make a Stylish Cycling Ankle Strap

This pretty ankle strap will keep your pants from getting caught in your bike chain—and look good doing it.

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by Diane Pedersen and Nissa Brehmer

The Happy Bicycle (Stash Books, 2014), by Kathy McGee is the perfect book for the fashion-conscious bicyclist. Beautiful, functional DIY bike accessories range from cute bicycle bell disguises to a pair of roomy panniers for toting craft projects or farmers’ market produce anywhere you might ride. The projects are presented with plenty of how-to instructions and photographs, so even a crafting novice can complete them; more experienced crafters will delight in the clever details that accentuate the stylishness of these bike accessories. The following pattern makes an attractive cycling ankle strap to guard your pant legs from greasy bike chains.

Why sacrifice style when you’re riding a bicycle? When you accessorize with this ankle strap, you can wear your wide-legged pants without worrying about getting your cuff greasy or caught in your bike chain. Cycling ankle straps can be made from a wide array of ribbons and colors. Make several and wear a different one every day.


• Cotton webbing: 1-inch size, 1/2 yard
• Woven jacquard ribbon: 5/8-7/8-inch wide, 1/2 yard
• Rickrack: 1/8-inch wide, 1 yard
• Parachute or quick-release buckle: 1-inch size
• Bar slide buckle: 1-inch size
• Coordinating thread


• Fabric glue

Finished Size:

1 inch wide, adjusts to fit up to 14 inches in circumference


For a sportier ankle strap that’s also a safety accessory, replace the jacquard ribbon with 5/8-7/8-inch reflective tape.

Making the Ankle Straps

1. Cut 2 pieces of rickrack 18 inches each. Spread a thin bead of glue on the wrong side of the ribbon along the edges. Glue a piece of rickrack along each edge.

orange rickrack being glued to the back side of floral ribbon

2. Center and glue the ribbon right side up on the webbing. Sew the edges of the ribbon to the webbing. Zigzag the ends of the ribbon and webbing.

floral fabric with rickrack on the sides with zig zag pattern sewn on the end

3. Thread one end of the webbing through the bar slide buckle. Fold the end over 1-1/2 inches with wrong sides together. Sew the end to the webbing along the edge.

4. Thread the webbing through the pronged side of the parachute buckle with the prongs facing the bar slide buckle.

fabric being threaded through the pronged side of a parachute buckle

5. Thread the webbing back through the bar slide buckle.

fabric being threaded through the bar slide buckle

6. Thread the webbing through the remaining side of the parachute buckle. Fold the end over 1-1/2 inches with the wrong sides together. Sew the end to the webbing along the edge.

fabric threaded through all pieces of a parachute buckle

7. Adjust the ankle strap to fit over your pant leg and around your ankle.

floral pattern adjustable strip with parachute buckle

book cover with a woman riding a bike with a bag of flowers on the front

Reprinted with permission from The Happy Bicycle by Kathy McGee and published by Stash Books, 2014.