I have had the chance to sew on a couple of different types of patches over the years. The hardest of them all was the military patches.
Can you sew on iron-on patches? You can sew on any iron-on patches. Depending on the placement of the patch you can either sew by machine or hand. With sew-on patches, you can attach them by other adhesive methods. The best way to affix any patch permanently is to sew it in place.
There are multiple ways to attach patches to different materials. Just because a patch is either sew-on or iron-on doesn’t mean you have to stick with that method to affix it to your project.
The use of Iron-on patches can only be on specific material. The best fabrics to use iron-on patches is cotton and denim. The issue with iron-on patches is that the iron needs to be hot enough to melt and activate the adhesive on the back of the patch. Thus, it creates an issue because some fabrics cannot handle this hot of iron temperatures and will melt or burn the fabric. Iron-on patches will not adhere to leather, nylon and plastic type materials.
This best thing I have found to do is to go ahead and sew on the iron-on patch. With sewing it into place, it makes sure that it will stay and not come off. You then don’t have to worry about washing in cold/warm water and drying it with low to no heat. High head drying can make the patch come loose from the fabric over time with the high heat washing and drying.
A great ironing hack to try
How to iron-on patches
If you are worried that the thread will not match the colors in the patch, then go with an invisible thread. These threads come in a clear and smoke color to help blend in and hide the stitching.
Ways to sew-on patches
Some patches have a beautiful satin stitch all the way around the edge of the patch. With this satin stitch, it makes it easy to sew the patch onto the fabric. You can do a zig-zag stitch all the way around the patches border. This way is the most secure way to affix your patch. Another good way to attach your it is by sewing a straight stitch all the way around the edge of the patch. If your sewing machine can do free-motion sewing by dropping the feed dogs, this can also be a great way to attach your patches. This way does take a little practice to make sure your stitching doesn’t look like a total disastrous mess. The final way to sew on a patch is by hand. You should use this method when you can’t get to the place you need to sew your patch on with a sewing machine.
How to sew on an iron-on patch.
Alternative ways to attach patches
There is an adhesive spray you can use to affix patches to different materials. It is a permanent spray adhesive, but I would consider it to be more of a temporary adhesive than a permanent one. After some wear and tear or multiple times through the washing machine and dryer, the patch will start to come off the material you have adhered it.
Another way is to use fabric glue. My favorite fabric glue is Fabri-Tac. It is a clear glue and holds up well to normal wear and tear. This glue does take some time set-up and dry. In the past with gluing on patches, I have used 100% cotton and adhered it to the iron-on backing. By utilizing the cloth on the back, this creates a surface for the glue to better stick to than the shiny iron-on portion of the patch.
With the use of glue and adhesive spray, you can affix patches to places that you can otherwise not attach by sewing or ironing.
More info about patches
Can you put an iron-on patch on leather? You can use iron-on patches on leather, but you need to be extremely careful when ironing. The heat of the iron can ruin the leather. Always use a pressing cloth and try to only apply the heat from the iron directly on the patch.
Are iron-on patches reusable? You can reuse iron-on patches; you will have to sew and or glue it on the next piece of fabric. The harder thing is that you have to remove the adhered patch from the material it is attached initially.