Guide to Embroidered Patch Backings

Patches have been a popular form of self-expression and customization for decades. From denim jackets to backpacks, patches allow us to add a unique touch to our belongings and showcase our interests, beliefs, and personalities. 

But with so many different backings to choose from, it can be overwhelming to decide which is right for your project. That’s why we’ve created this guide to patch backings: to help you understand the different types of backings and choose the right one for your project.

This guide will cover everything you need to know about iron-on, Velcro, adhesive, sew-on, magnetic, and pin-on backings. We’ll explore the benefits and drawbacks of each type of backing and the types of fabrics they work best with. 

Type of Patch Backing

What is Patch Backing?

A patch backing refers to the material attached to the back of a patch to hold it in place on a garment or accessory. The backing can be made from various materials, including iron-on, Velcro, adhesive, sew-on, magnetic, or pin-on, and each type has its benefits and limitations. 

The backing is an important consideration when it comes to patches as it will determine how well the patch stays in place, how long it lasts, and how easy it is to remove and replace.

The Importance of Choosing The Right Backing for Your Project

Choosing the right backing for your patch is crucial because it will impact the patch’s overall look, durability, and functionality. Here are some reasons why choosing the right backing is essential:

  1. Durability: Different backings have different levels of durability, and some backings are more suitable for high-wear areas, such as clothing that will be frequently washed or exposed to the elements, than others. Choosing the right backing will ensure that your patch stays in place and looks good for as long as possible.
  2. Aesthetics: Some backings are more discreet than others and will blend in better with the fabric of the garment, while others are designed to be more noticeable. 
  3. Ease of use: Different backings can be attached differently; some are easier to attach and remove than others. For example, an iron-on backing may be more permanent, while a Velcro backing may be more easily removable. 
  4. Compatibility: Different backings are compatible with different types of fabrics. For example, some adhesives may not stick well to certain types of synthetic materials, while some sew-on backings may be more challenging to attach to thick or heavy fabrics. 

The Different Types of Patch Backings 

Here is the different type of patch backing.

1. Iron-on Backing

Iron-on backing is a patch backing that uses heat to activate an adhesive on the back of the patch, which then sticks to the fabric. This type of backing is popular due to its ease of use and permanent bond.

  • How it Works and Its Benefits:

Iron-on backing works by using a heat-activated adhesive on the back of the patch. To attach the patch, the user simply applies heat to the patch with an iron or heat press, causing the adhesive to melt and stick to the fabric. The patch is then allowed to cool, forming a permanent bond with the fabric.

The benefits of iron-on backings include their ease of use, strong bond, and ability to withstand washing and drying. Iron-on backings are also a good choice for patches that will be subjected to high levels of wear and tear, as the bond remains strong even after multiple washings.

  • Types of Fabrics Suitable for Iron-on Backings:

Iron-on backings are suitable for a wide range of fabrics, including cotton, polyester, and blends. Some fabrics, such as silk or rayon, may not be ideal for iron-on backings as they may melt or scorch under high heat.

Iron-on backings are generally considered permanent and difficult to remove once attached. Care should be taken when attaching iron-on backings to ensure proper placement and to avoid any mistakes that may result in the need for removal.

Iron on Backing

2. Velcro Backing

Velcro backing is a patch backing that uses a hook-and-loop fastener to attach the patch to the fabric. This type of backing is popular due to its versatility and ease of use.

  • How it Works and Its Benefits:

Velcro backing works by using a hook-and-loop fastener on the back of the patch and the corresponding loop fabric on the attached surface. 

To attach the velcro patch, simply press it onto the loop fabric, causing the hooks to engage and hold the patch in place. Velcro backings can be easily removed and repositioned as needed.

The benefits of Velcro backings include their versatility, ease of use, and ability to be easily removed and repositioned. Velcro backings are also a good choice for patches that will be subjected to frequent removal and repositioning, such as patches on clothing or bags that may need to be removed for washing.

  • Types of Fabrics Suitable for Velcro Backings:

Velcro backings are suitable for many fabrics, including cotton, polyester, and blends. However, some fabrics may not be ideal for Velcro backings if the loop fabric is not sturdy enough to hold the hooks or if the hooks may damage the fabric’s surface.

Velcro backings are generally considered easy to remove and reposition, but care should be taken to ensure that the hooks are securely engaged with the loop fabric to avoid accidental detachment.

Velcro Backing

3. Adhesive Backing

The adhesive backing is a patch backing that uses a permanent adhesive to attach the patch to the fabric. This type of backing is popular due to its ease of use and durability.

  • How it Works and Its Benefits:

Adhesive backing works by using a permanent adhesive on the back of the patch that sticks to the surface it is attached to. To attach the patch, the user simply peels off the protective backing and presses the patch onto the surface. Adhesive backings are durable and long-lasting and are suitable for use on a wide range of fabrics.

The benefits of adhesive backings include their ease of use, durability, and versatility. Adhesive backings are also a good choice for patches that will not be subjected to frequent removal and repositioning, such as patches on jackets or bags that will remain in place for an extended period of time.

  • Types of Fabrics Suitable for Adhesive Backings:

Adhesive backings are suitable for many fabrics, including cotton, polyester, and blends. However, some fabrics may not be ideal for adhesive backings if the adhesive is not strong enough to hold the patch or if the adhesive may damage the fabric’s surface.

Adhesive backings are generally considered permanent and difficult to remove, so care should be taken to ensure that the patch is positioned correctly before attaching it to the surface. If the patch needs to be removed, it may be possible to do so by carefully peeling it off, but this may cause damage to the surface of the fabric.

Adhesive BAcking

4. Sew-On Backing

Sew-on backing is a type of patch backing that requires the patch to be sewn onto the fabric’s surface. This type of backing is a traditional method of attaching patches and is often used for patches that need to be removed or repositioned.

  • How it Works and Its Benefits:

Sew-on backings work by using a needle and thread to sew the patch onto the fabric’s surface. This type of backing is considered durable and long-lasting, as the thread provides a strong bond between the patch and the fabric.

The benefits of sew-on backings include their versatility, as they can be used on a wide range of fabrics, and their ability to be removed or repositioned, as the thread, can be easily cut. Sew-on backings are also a good choice for patches that will be subjected to frequent wear and tear, such as patches on clothing that will be worn frequently.

  • Types of Fabrics Suitable for Sew-On Backings:

Sew-on backings are suitable for many fabrics, including cotton, polyester, and blends. However, some fabrics may not be ideal for sew-on backings if they are too delicate or too thick to be sewn or if the needle or thread may damage them.

When attaching a sew-on backing, care should be taken to ensure that the thread is tightly woven and that the patch is securely attached to the fabric. If the patch needs to be removed or repositioned, the thread can be cut, and the patch can be removed.

Sew on Patch

5. Pin Backing

Pin-on backing is a patch backing that uses pins to attach the patch to the fabric’s surface. This type of backing is one of the oldest and most traditional forms of patch attachment.

  • How it Works and Its Benefits:

Pin-on backings use small pins to attach the patch to the fabric. The pins are typically sewn into the patch and then pushed through the fabric to secure the patch in place.

The benefits of pin-on backings include their versatility, as they can be attached to a wide range of fabrics, and their durability, as the pins can withstand frequent use and washing. Pin-on backings are also easy to remove, as the pins can be pulled out to release the patch.

  • Types of Fabrics Suitable for Pin-on Backings:

Pin-on backings are suitable for many fabrics, including cotton, polyester, and blends. However, some fabrics may not be ideal for pin-on backings if they are too thick or if they contain metallic elements that may interfere with the pins.

Pin Patch

Conclusion

In conclusion, choosing the right patch backing is essential to any patch project. Understanding the different types of backings, their benefits, and the types of fabrics suitable for each backing can help you make an informed decision and achieve the desired results.

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