Badge holders protect your IDs from wear and tear, ensure visibility for security purposes, and can be a subtle yet effective branding tool. They’re used in everything from networking in corporate events to daily use in office environments.

However, learning how to make badge holders requires time, resources, and a knack for precision to ensure the end product is both durable and professional in appearance. The truth is, you’re almost always better off saving the time and stress associated with this project and outsourcing to a professional.

We’ll walk you through DIY badge holders below to show you how time-intensive and nuanced this process is, and you’ll also discover why is the #1 choice for a custom badge holder online. 

When you work with us, you can kick back and relax knowing you’re getting a quality solution at an unbeatable price, all backed by our industry-leading customer service. Bring your badge holder to life today!

The Role of Badge Holders

Badge holders play an essential role in the functionality and preservation of identification badges. They act as a protective casing that shields the badge from environmental factors such as moisture, dust, and general wear that can result from daily handling. 

They’re a great investment because they reduce the need for frequent replacements by extending the lifespan of an ID badge, saving resources and maintaining a consistent professional appearance.

Additionally, badge holders can be designed to accommodate various badge sizes and can include additional features such as thumb notches for easy badge removal or transparent windows to display the badge information clearly. 

They are an indispensable accessory in environments where identification and security are priorities. And while we believe that you’re better off outsourcing, we’ll still walk you through how to make badge holders DIY below if you’re committed to the project! 

How to Make Badge Holders: Step-by-Step Guide

Just as with how to make PVC ID cards, your time and energy are likely better spent elsewhere. Nevertheless, here’s a detailed look at how to make badge holders:

Gather Materials

The first step in making badge holders is to assemble all the necessary materials. Depending on the style and types of badge holders you want to create, your list might include:

  • Vinyl sheets, acrylic, or PVC plastic: These are the primary materials for the holder itself, providing durability and a clear display window for the ID badge. Acrylic offers the most premium look and feel, while PVC is more affordable.

  • Adhesive: For assembling the badge holder parts, you may need a strong, non-toxic adhesive that's suitable for plastics.

  • Cutting tools: Precision cutting tools like a rotary cutter or die-cutting machine will help you achieve clean edges.

  • Ruler and cutting mat: These tools will guide your cuts and protect your work surface.

  • Hole punch: A standard or specialized hole punch is necessary for creating slots or holes for lanyard or clip attachments.

  • Corner rounder: To give your badge holders a professional finish, a corner rounder can smooth out sharp edges.

  • Laminator: If you choose to laminate your badge holder for extra durability, a laminating machine will be required. Learn more about choosing between laminated ID cards vs not laminated in our blog. 

Choose Design

Selecting the right design influences both the functionality and aesthetics of your badge holders. Here are some things to consider:

  • Size: Measure the ID card size in inches you intend to encase and design your holder to accommodate the card with a slight extra margin for easy insertion and removal.

  • Orientation: Decide whether you want a vertical or horizontal badge holder, as this will determine the placement of the attachment points.

  • Attachment type: Determine if you will use lanyards, clips, or retractable reels, and ensure your design includes the appropriate slots or holes.

  • Thickness: The thickness of the material you choose will affect the durability and rigidity of the badge holder. Just as with the ID cards materials themselves, thicker badge holders offer more protection but may require more robust cutting tools.

Personalization Options

While you may assume that something as basic as a badge holder is one-size-fits-all, that is not the case. You can create your own design that aligns with your brand and the ID cards themselves!

Adding a company logo or event branding can be done through screen printing, embossing, or using adhesive labels. Or, at the very least, consider using colored vinyl or overlays to incorporate company colors or to differentiate between levels of access or roles.

You could also add text for names, titles, or instructions directly onto the badge holder using specialized printers - although it may make more sense to save those types of details for the badge itself. 

Another unique approach is to include graphics. This could be anything from simple shapes to complex images, enhancing the visual appeal and providing additional information.

Leveraging features such as holographic overlays, watermarks, or microtext offers a higher level of security. These elements are difficult to replicate and can safeguard against unauthorized duplication.

Assembly Process

Once you have your materials and personalized design ready, it's time to assemble your badge holders and actually bring them to life. Follow these steps for a successful assembly:

  • Cutting: Using your precision cutting tools, cut the vinyl or PVC to the dimensions required for your ID cards. Ensure that all cuts are straight and clean for a professional look.

  • Punching Holes: Determine where the attachment points will be and use your hole punch to create slots or holes. This should be done with precision to avoid misalignment.

  • Rounding Corners: If your design calls for rounded corners, use the corner rounder on each cut piece to achieve a consistent and safe edge.

  • Adhesive Application: Apply adhesive to the edges of the badge holder, being careful not to get any on the clear window area. If using a laminator, place the cut pieces into a laminating pouch and run them through the machine according to the manufacturer's instructions.

  • Sealing: Press the edges together firmly to create a seal. If necessary, use a flat edge or a roller to ensure the seal is even and free of air bubbles.

  • Attachment: Add any lanyards, clips, or reels to the badge holder, making sure they are securely attached and easy to use.

The final step in the badge holder creation process is quality control. This ensures that each badge holder meets your standards for durability and appearance. 

Examine each badge holder for any defects such as misalignment, smudges, or inadequate sealing. Check that the attachment points are robust and that the badge fits snugly within the holder.

Perform a stress test by gently pulling on the badge holder to ensure it can withstand normal use. If it includes a retractable reel or clip, test these mechanisms to confirm they function correctly.

Compare badge holders against each other to ensure consistency in size, shape, and quality. Uniformity is key, especially if you plan to use these badges as part of your business security or networking goals.

Is Making Badge Holders Worth it or Should You Outsource to a Professional?

There you have it - how to make badge holders. Before you get started, though, let’s talk about whether this is worth your time in the first place or if you are better off outsourcing.  Let’s look at the pros and cons below along with the appeal of outsourcing. 

Pros and Cons of DIY


  • Customization: DIY allows for complete control over the design and personalization of the badge holders, enabling you to tailor them precisely to your needs.

  • Immediate Production: If you need badge holders immediately and have the materials on hand, DIY can be quicker than waiting for a professional order.

  • Cost Savings: DIY may save on costs compared to outsourcing for small quantities, especially if you already possess the necessary tools and materials.


  • Time Investment: The process of making badge holders can be time-consuming, particularly if you need a large quantity or intricate designs.

  • Equipment Costs: The initial investment can be significant if you don't have the necessary equipment - offsetting the costs savings that attracted you to the project in the first place!

  • Consistency: Maintaining a uniform standard across all badge holders can be challenging, which might result in variable quality.

  • Durability: Without professional-grade materials and equipment, DIY badge holders may not be as durable or professional-looking as those produced by specialists.

Why You’re Better Off Outsourcing

Outsourcing is almost always going to be your best bet for several reasons. First and foremost, a professional manufacturer will have access to high-quality materials and advanced printing techniques, ensuring a durable and aesthetically pleasing product.

Further to that point, you’ll get the same great quality across all the different badge holders, maintaining a consistent brand image.

Professionals can also incorporate advanced security features and complex personalization that might be challenging to replicate in a DIY setting. 

Most importantly, though, outsourcing frees up your time to focus on other important tasks, making it an efficient option for businesses and events. It’s also more cost-effective for larger quantities due to economies of scale.

In the end, it’s clear that DIY badge holders have their place - but the vast majority of individuals are much better off leaving this to the experts. And when it comes to custom badge holders, there’s a reason has been the go-to choice for over a decade… 

Save the Time and Stress of Making Badge Holders Yourself at

As we said from the start, you can feel confident making badge holders here at knowing you’re getting world-class quality at a low price. 

You don’t have to take our word for it, either. We’ve served millions of customers over the years, including some of your favorite brands like Nike, Netflix, Microsoft, Yelp, and more! From non-profits to industry leaders, you can expect the same commitment to exceeding expectations on our end.

We use the best materials in all our products, ranging from our acrylic badge holder to our clear plastic card holder - and even to our custom ID cards, custom wristbands, and custom lanyards in bulk! Our skilled craftspeople use the latest technology to produce these products with unparalleled attention to detail.

But, you don’t have to pay a premium for this quality. You can get badge holders as low as $0.36 a piece when you buy in bulk! That being said, we accept single orders as well, there is no MOQ here at

So, browse our solutions today and avoid the hassle and headache of making badge holders yourself. With, you can focus your time and energy elsewhere where they’re used best! 

Parting Thoughts on How to Make Badge Holders

Creating badge holders is a craft that blends functionality with creativity, offering the opportunity to produce customized accessories that not only protect identification cards but also serve as a branding tool. 

That being said, learning how to make badge holders DIY is rarely worth the time and effort that is required. Rather, outsourcing to professionals is advisable for high-quality, consistent, and time-efficient results, especially for larger orders.

Our blog has more resources on topics like how to put an ID card on a lanyard, how do ID cards work, what to put on a lanyard, who makes custom ID cards, how much do ID cards cost, can you customize ID cards, and more.

Remember, the right badge holder paired with a custom PVC card can make a lasting impression, uphold your security needs, and contribute to a cohesive professional image. This is why our customers choose us.

So, what are you waiting for? Explore our selection today and secure badge holders that meet the pinnacle of quality and design.