I wrote a post a few moons ago about shoulder rests and how to keep them from slipping. (Read about slipping shoulder rests here.)
Red Desert Violin reader Donny recently wrote in with his own excellent method to keep a violin shoulder rest from slipping. Ready for his miracle solution?
It’s velcro…at least one part of the velcro. The part that I use is the plastic barb (hook) material and is 3/4″ wide. I cut small pieces and stick each piece “across” the padded side of the shoulder rest until they cover the entire padded surface (about 8 pieces).
Objects that stick with glue usually eventually come apart and lift at the ends. So to keep each piece stuck at the ends, I went to Hobby Lobby and bought some small fabric eyelets and punched a hole in each end of each piece of the velcro using a leather hole-punch. Then I inserted the eyelets and snugged up the ends of the velcro using electrical zip-ties (found at Home Depot or Lowes in the electrical dept.) inserted through the eyelets.
Of course all the velcro pieces are cut, eyelets installed and zip-ties attached from the top side of the shoulder rest…it looks very neat and there’s no way for the ends of the pieces of velcro to ever come unstuck or lift up. Now the shoulder rest actually sticks so well that sometimes I have to hold down on my shirt to take the fiddle down from my shoulder.
The only possible problem (and I’ve not tried it yet) would be for ladies who wear delicate fabric, like satin or silk. Over a period of time the velcro might scuff up the material. One admonition; there’s velcro and then there’s velcro…I have 3 different types and none are the same. The heavy industrial type does not work well. I use the VELCRO brand…it’s 3/4″ wide and mine is on a 15 ft. roll. It’s called “Velcro brand-self-adhesive hook & loop for smooth surfaces”. There are 2 numbers on the box; 90083 and 202182…don’t know what they mean. I’m sure you can find it in a hardware store or go to the Velcro USA Industries website.
Thanks for the tip, Donny! Here is another view:
I found that Save Shelf helps. I tie it on with some string, and it keeps the instrument from slipping.
Thanks for all you helpful hints.
YES! That’s the stuff! It’s great because you can buy big sheets of it, and cut to any shape, or double it up, or whatever. And it’s DESIGNED to be grippy, and not slippy!
yep.. mine too keeps on slipping. Maybe I need to get a new SRest.. btw the only way I am able to keep it sticking to my body is by taking off my shirt.. it does stick that way..
LOL….well, we girls don’t really get that option! And I’m not aware of any “bare-back” orchestras, although it sounds revolutionary!
I have a hard, maple shoulder rest, slick wood. I put a gob of sticky rubber bands right in the shoulder groove, and those rubber bands stick to my clothes wonderfully!
You can use rubber bands, hair scrunchy ties, kitchen shelf non-skid liners, even velcro (the scratchy side), although I think that would ruin shirts pretty quickly.
Interesting article. Follows my own attempts using velcro. I had some of the heavy duty stuff. With the adhesive on one side. Put the hook side under the violin rest and stuck a small piece of the other directly onto my shirt . Worked real well for keeping my violin in place. But when I tried to remove the violin from my shoulder, I had a problem.
That seems awesome but it requires a lot of work to do it, especially by someone who doesnt get along with that kind of stuff. Couldnt we just use a towel?
Yes, Geiger, I agree….it’s a very elaborate solution. I would also worry about it ruining my shirts!
ABSOLUTELY, you can just use a towel.
But there are other solutions that are just as simple, and maybe better than a towel….
Take a scrunchy hair tie and wrap it around the spot that tends to slip.
I’ve also used rubber bands, and they seem to last about a year before “dry rot” sets in, and then I just put new ones on. The rubber really creates great friction on my shoulder.
Thanks for weighing in.
Send me a pic of your solution, if you feel up to it!
Help!! I have been playing violin for the past six years on my own. We live in rural Maine, and teachers are just too far, and due to our financial restrictions I cannot afford a good teacher. What should I be practicing?
Any suggestions would be a blessing.
I can give you all kinds of suggestions, but I need to know a couple things: What style are in interested in pursuing, and what level do you play at now?
Can you slur, vibrato, shift, do you know anything besides 1st position, do you know how to make beautiful tone, what are the last 3 songs you played, do you play in tune, do you know how to read music, answer those questions, and I’ll give you some really good suggestions. –Lora
hi lori that velcro is a good tip . cause im alway lifting my fiddle up an puting it back on my shoulder. why do you live in kingman , i went through there in 2000, just curious , nothing the matter with living there just seems strang that a sophisticated woman like you would settle there.now i could live there because im a cowboy an thats cattle country,
Hi Milt. The velcro is very cool. Don’t tell my Kingman neighbors I’m sophisticated! They all think think I’m a redneck. 🙂