How to Fix a Drawstring in Under Two Minutes

How to Fix a Drawstring in Under Two Minutes

The humble drawstring makes so many things possible — namely, cinching the hood of your sweatshirt, or keeping your swim trunks from falling off when you get out of the pool. But if that string gets yoinked out, it can be a major pain in the arse to get it back in. Unless, that is, you have a charging cable handy.

An iPhone cable — or really any cable with a small connector and a relatively stiff cord — will be able to thread that drawstring back through perfectly. Sure, you could also use the more traditional method in which you spear a large safety pin through the end of the drawstring and use that to guide the string back through its channel. But these days, most of us are more likely to have a charging cable handy than a safety pin.

Here’s how you do it:

  1. Insert the small end of the cable into one of the drawstring holes.
  2. Keep pushing the cable through until it pokes out the other end.
  3. Tie the string to the cable.
  4. Gently pull the cable back through the channel.

Pulling the cable through the channel takes seconds; the only finicky bit is easing the knotted string into the channel as you begin step #4. Drawstring channels usually have plenty of room to accommodate both the cord and the knotted drawstring, but sometimes the opening of the channel can be a bit snug. You can enlarge it a bit, if needed, by cutting or stretching the opening that extra fraction of an inch.

Photo: Beth Skwarecki
Photo: Beth Skwarecki

After seeing this tip on video, I tried it out with the hoodie I was wearing. Two things I’ll note about that video: First, the video is sped up, so it takes longer than the 45 seconds mentioned in the title. And second, the person doing it tries to brute-force step 4 by pulling hard on the cable instead of taking a second to ease the cable back into the hole. You can do better.

My test worked perfectly, and even with that bit of finagling, I had my drawstring back in place in under two minutes. I own safety pins, but this process took less time than I would have spent digging around my sewing supplies to find one.

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