Patches are fashion accessories that have withstood the test of time. While other trends have come and go, patches have stayed and are even getting more and more popular. Patches come in different types, price, material, durability, and texture. They are often attached to a fabric through ironing, sewing, or by using fabric glue. There are several types of patches, and one popular type that never goes out of style is the embroidered patches. This article discusses everything you need to know about embroidered iron-on patches.
What is an Embroidered Patch?
The embroidered patch, also called a cloth badge, is an embroidered cloth created using a thread and fabric backing. Embroidered patches are often used to customize and adorn clothes, bags, shoes, hats, other accessories, DIY projects, gifts, and costumes. They are also used to represent companies, organizations, as commemoration, to identify military personnel, and other decorative purposes.
Benefits of Using Embroidered Patches
Embroidered patches are not only for fashion or decorative uses. When used properly, they can be a very effective branding strategy for businesses and organizations. Using embroidered patches in marketing strategy can be done in many ways, and it can be put to use not just to promote a product but also to help the brand stand out and appear like a well-established and sophisticated brand. Here are some benefits of using embroidered patches:
- Cost-Effective: Embroidered patches are very affordable and attractive. They are best for those looking to run a business marketing campaign within a budget.
- Available in All Kinds of Shapes and Sizes: The best quality of embroidered patches is that they can be designed to fit any shape and size.
- Durable: Embroidered patches are long-lasting and can last for a long time. Because we use high-quality materials, it can withstand many washes and will not come off or become dull.
- Flexibility of Use: Embroidered patches are flexible in terms of their place of application, with many options available. You can apply them to your favorite shirt, jacket, bag, or any accessories.
History of Embroidered Patches
Embroidered patches were invented hundreds of years ago in China. The Chinese used various sewing techniques to patch, mend, and tailor clothes, which led to the sewing of different decorative designs. Over the years, others began sewing patterns and designs into clothes, blankets, rugs, tapestries, and more. Sometimes the designs were small, which later on became “patches.”
Throughout history and into the modern-day, embroidered patches have been an essential part of military wear. Worn in military uniforms, usually on the upper arm or chest, the embroidered patches are used to denote the rank and unit of the soldier, along with their name.
Fashion has helped introduce patches to people. In the 80s, heavy metal fashion became popular. Bikers, rockers, and other subcultures wear long hair, black clothes, and leather jackets covered with patches and wristbands, and band tees.
Although sometimes still created by hand, modern embroidered patches are usually made using a machine and attached to fabrics by ironing, sewing, or fabric glue. So even if you are not a crafty DIY enthusiast, you can still use embroidered patches to express or show your style.
Types of Patches
Here are the different types of patches:
Woven patches use thinner threads with no base and create a smooth surface. Woven patches achieve finer and smaller details that cannot be done with the embroidery type.
The PVC patches are a modern alternative to the embroidered patch. Usually made of durable plastic, PVC comes in different colors that can bring any design to life. PVC patches are waterproof and durable. Because of their durability, PVC patches are great for outdoor applications.
The chenille patches are made with chenille yarn sewn in tightly woven loops for a 3-dimensional look and a furry texture. This type of patch is often used on varsity or letterman jackets and cheerleading uniforms.
Leather patches are less common than the other patches, but they have a classic appeal and signature look that can’t be achieved in other types.
The name patches can be made from any material and color.
The embroidered patches are the most popular type of patches. It uses different colors and designs and a special embroidery thread, polyester, rayon, or a combination of the two.
Here at Laughinglizards.com, we offer embroidered patches of different designs, colors, and sizes. We have everything you need, from military patches to sports, flowers, animals, food, astrology, to Christmas and Halloween patches. We also offer custom patches for your personalized patches. Our creative team is always ready to help make your dream patch design into reality.
Ways to Apply Embroidered Patches on Fabric
Ironing, sewing, and using fabric glue can apply embroidered patches to any material. The application method will depend on the materials you are using, as some cannot be ironed, sewn, or glued. Sewing Is the most permanent way of attaching embroidered patches into clothes. Below is how you can attach embroidered patches.
How to Iron Embroidered Patches
Follow these easy steps in ironing embroidered patches to fabrics.
- Prepare your fabric: First, check your clothing or material to attach the patch to ensure your fabric is not heat sensitive, clean, and free of wrinkles. Plan where you want to put your embroidered patch before turning the iron on.
- Set the iron temperature: Find the right setting on your iron for the type of fabric you’re using. Preheat your iron to the right temperature (without steam).
- Iron the area: Select a dry, hard, and flat surface. Preheat the spot.
- Position patch on fabric: Place the patch over the heated area—cover the patch with a thin pressing cloth or baking parchment paper.
- Iron the patch: Iron your patch to the selected spot. Make sure not to move your patch at all. Press straight down, holding for 30-40 seconds with constant pressure. (Do not move the iron back and forth). Use a slow circular motion. Then turn the fabric inside out and repeat the ironing process.
- Check the patch: Take off the cover and check the patch on the fabric. The patch should stick to the cloth without turning up any ends. Repeat the process if the patch does not stick entirely.
How to Use Glue on Embroidered Patches
- Start by deciding the placement of the patch. Don’t worry if you accidentally put the patch in the wrong place. With glue, patches can be removed. Just read the removal instruction that comes with the glue.
- Lay the fabric on a flat surface.
- Carefully apply glue at the back of the patch and the area where you want to put the patch.
- Wait for two to five minutes. The glue will create a strong bond as it dries slowly.
- Place the patch on the cloth and press them firmly together.
- The patch and the cloth will stick together immediately.
- You can wash, dry, and wear the cloth after 24 hours.
How to Hand Sew Embroidered Patches into Fabric
- Ensure no seams or folds on your fabric and place the patch where you want it to be.
- Use pins to hold the patch in place.
- Using a thread, strap the needle and tie a knot at the end. You can augment the thread to intensify the strength.
- About ⅛” from the edge and the back of the patch and cloth, drive in the strapped needle. Make sure that you are securely holding the patch. Place your finger at the bottom and thumb at the top for a more firm grip.
- Start the sewing process. Make sure the stitches are lined. I do remove the pins that secure the patch in place once sewing.
Embroidered Patch Backing
There are three main types of backing for embroidered patches: iron-on, velcro, and adhesive backing.
Iron-on backing is also called heat seal as it uses heat to attach the embroidered patch into the fabric. Iron is used to press the patch until it sticks into the material.
Velcro backing uses hooks and loops. The loop is sewn on clothes while the hook is sewn to the patch. Velcro backing is often used for police and military patches.
Adhesive backing is the most used type of backing. In this backing, adhesive tape is used to attach the embroidered patch. The process is not long-lasting, so it is only suitable for non-permanent patch attachment. The embroidered patches are ready to iron onto any fabric or DIY materials.
Here at LaughingLizards.com, our patches come with iron-on adhesive backing, but they can also be sewn or glued to any fabric. If you want a permanent patch attachment, the best thing you can do is iron on the embroidered patch and then sew it to the material. This way, you can ensure your patches are securely attached. Some materials, like leather jackets, can’t also be ironed, so apply patches by sewing or using fabric glue.