Velcro, as we usually call it, is a found on a wide range of products like shoes, jackets, leashes, bags, key chains, and many other items.
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Attaching Velcro to Fabric
Velcro is composed of two different parts, there is the hook part and then there is the loop part. Therefore they are often called hook and loop attachments.
The most secure option to attach velcro to a piece of fabric is of course going to be through sewing it on. Some tasks are easier said than done, and sewing velcro is one of them.
The basic stitch is simple enough for beginners, but velcro is a sturdy, thick material that can make sewing considerably more challenging.
Especially when needing to attach larger pieces of velcro, the sewing gets too labor-intensive and difficult. Therefore many look for alternatives. One of the most popular and easy ways to attach velcro to fabric is with the usage of adhesives.
Instead of sewing, you apply these adhesives as you would simply apply a sticker. Velcro strips are available with integrated adhesive backing or without.
Adhesive backings are available in high-quality variants that offer a permanent attachment. But since of its inherent nature of using adhesive instead of sewing, it is advisable to solely use it on light-weight applications.
How to Attach Velcro to Fabric
Before applying an adhesive velcro to a delicate fabric, it would be wise to first check how the adhesive reacts to the chosen fabric.
To run this check, take an inside corner (that won’t be visible when worn) of your garment and attach some of the adhesives to it. You are going to want to give attention to any potential discoloration, puckering, fading, or even dissolving of the material. If none of these conditions occur, you’re able to apply your chosen adhesive.
For best results always make sure to wash and dry the garment beforehand properly. Since during daily wear, all garments pick up lots of dirt from the environment. But fabrics also pick up dirt from the natural oils emitted by your own body. All these particles might compromise the end result of the patch-job and its longevity.
Also make sure to adhere to the included instructions that were included with your adhesive or all-in-one velcro solution, and let it settle for at least a night before wearing. Inside the included instructions of the adhesive will be laundering instructions that vary from brand to brand.
Velcro adhesives can close anything from a jacket to a handbag. It is also an ideal solution for costumes when a show requires a quick change. A small square of tape can replace a module or a button, and a wide strip can be used instead of a zipper. Velcro can also be used to replace a seam. Velcro is also useful for upholstery and for making clothing to fit a person with reduced mobility.
See Related Article: How to Make Velcro Stick to the Fabric – A Guide
Applying Self-Adhering Velcro to Fabric
We will now show you a step by step guide on how to attach velcro with the integrated adhesive:
Choosing the right materials
Discover the type of velcro that your project needs. If you’re following a pattern, read the list of specifications to find out what color and width of velcro you need to buy. If this is not the case, you will have more liberty in choosing the size and color that you think is going to be the most suitable.
As a general rule, the smaller the clothes, the thinner the velcro surface should be. A doll’s dress may need 0.5 cm wide velcro, but a backpack may need a velcro strip that is 2.5 cm in width.
When possible, try to match the color of the velcro to the color of the fabric. If you do not find the same color, use white for light fabrics and black for dark fabrics.
For best results, choose velcro with a soft, flexible strip. It will be easier to stick on than a stiff and thick one.
Cutting and Positioning the Velcro Strap
Get some sharp scissors and cut the velcro at the right length. First, cut the part of the hooks and use this as a guide to cut the matching piece with the loops.
Separate the pairing pieces if they are hooked in together. Do not cut them at the same time, otherwise, you might cut some of the hooks and rings unnecessarily, and often it comes out crooked.
To get the most precise results, some use a jig. If you don’t have a jig, you could use a ruler and some markers. Depending on the final product, you will have to imagine what shape will look the best. A square of 2.5 cm looks good for a bag, but a longer strip works generally better for a jacket.
Cut the seam angles off each velcro. If you take a good look at a piece, you will see that the hooks and rings do not extend to the side edges, the manufacturer left a small space on each side. Cut the corners of these spaces so that they are not straight but angular. This gives your velcro a better finish and prevents it from scratching against your skin.
If your velcro has no space on the sides, use small, pointed scissors to cut off the hooks and rings on each side to create the same effect.
Always place the velcro with the hooks side facing away from your skin. Since the velcro is between two overlapping pieces of fabric, place the soft strip at the bottom of the top fabric and place the rough piece on top of the bottom fabric. In this way, the strip with hooks is in the opposite direction to your skin.
Do not place the velcro strip directly on the edge of the fabric, so the velcro strip will not scratch your skin.
Before taking off the adhesive backing, you should attach the pre-cut velcro to the fabric with pins. This will make it much easier to check the right position. One pin in the middle of the strip should be enough for most types of velcro. If you are working with a long strip though, such as a jacket, it is best to place a pin every few inches.
If you can’t get the pins through the velcro without bending them, you could also use strips of masking tape.
If desired, cover the needle with wax or a needle lubricant. It’s not necessary, but this will facilitate the process of getting the needle through the velcro, just stick the needle through a block of wax or needle lubricant, even a candle will do!
Attaching the Velcro to the Fabric
Now take off the adhesive backing and press it firmly into place after you have checked and double-checked the correct placement.
If you used needles to keep them in place, as mentioned previously, then it is advisable to leave the needles in place. Simply take off the adhesive backing until it reaches the needle.
Once arrived at the spot of the needle you have to firmly press down the side of the velcro you are working at. Now that this part of the velcro is firmly attached, you can remove the needle and continue with the rest of the remaining strip.
Now we are going to take care of the other side. Place the loop-sided strip on the other side of the opening, the loops down so that the two fields are aligned when the sides overlap and the garment is closed. Now take off the adhesive backing and press it firmly into place after you have checked and double-checked the correct placement.
Simply take off the adhesive backing until it reaches the needle. Once arrived at the spot of the needle you have to firmly press down the side of the velcro you are working at. Now that this part of the velcro is firmly attached, you can remove the needle and continue with the rest of the remaining strip.
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Velco Attachment Conclusion
Since that by its inherent nature adhesive isn’t as strong as sewing, we advise you to have the velcro firmly pressed for as long as possible before wearing the item.
Some even advise putting it in a press for the best results. But even if you do not have a press in your possession, you can easily reproduce the same effects by placing heavy books on the adhesive and let it sit for a night or so.