Dread sewing on Scout or uniform patches? Use fabric glue!

Amazon: Beacon Fabri-Tac Permanent Adhesive, 4-OunceAmy's hack should comfort the needle-and-thread phobic among us all, and save time and sore fingers in the bargain:

I just shared this with my friend and thought I should send it to you!  Unfortunately I told her AFTER she had ironed on five Scout patches… 

Instead of sewing or ironing patches onto sashes or vests, glue them on! You can get fabric glue at any craft or fabric store (or well-stocked craft department in some big-box stores). Just spread the glue on the patch, press the patch onto the vest, let it dry, and voila! [VIOLA! Old joke. Couldn't resist. –Ed.] So easy, and they stay on so much better than when you iron them on.

Speaking as one who has very little experience with a needle and thread, but who still sewed a thick patch onto her kid's Taekwondo uniform, I say AMEN (and ouch). But with a caveat: if you intend to wash the item, make sure the glue specifically says it's washable.

This hack is perfect for Scout sashes or vests which get washed rarely if at all. But, in my experience, some fabric glue doesn't hold up well with repeated laundering.

For what it's worth, I found a local seamstress right across the street from the Taekwondo studio that sews patches onto uniforms for $5 apiece. Best $5 I've spent in a while.

Any fabric glue fans? What's your favorite brand?

Related: Keep a stocked sports bag at the ready

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  1. says

    Fabric glue was NOT a workable solution for us, with the patches on my kids’ AWANA vests, as well as their Lowe’s Build and Grow acheivements. Just doesn’t last, even without laundering.

    For something like the Tae Kwan Do, I agree with having it sewn on if you’re not inclined.

    For the others, though: Fusible interfacing! Iron-on stuff you buy at the fabric store, and that stuff WORKS!!

  2. Mark T says

    I agree with the other comments; fabric glue will just not hold up to the trials of a Scout’s activities. As a young scout it was my responsibility to sew on my own badges. Under my Mom’s expert watch I learned to sew and it’s a skill I have never lost nor regretted.

    Also, in my days in scouts if you lost your badge you did not get a replacement so you want to make sure it never comes off.

  3. Jessica says

    I was never taught to sew, so when my daughter’s Daisy Scout leader told me about Badge Magic, I was extremely grateful. It’s a sheet of sticky paper that can be cut to fit. They sell it at Scout stores, but I’m guessing it’s very similar to the fusible interfacing sold in craft stores.

  4. Kelly says

    I’ve tried fabric glue and tacky glue to glue my daughter’s Girl Scout patches all last year. I hate to say it, but it was an epic FAIL. Neither worked at all. It would stick for a very short while (like a day or two) and it’d easily peel off. Not to mention washing…another fail. After several attempts, the only thing that was successful out of the endeavor was having stiff patches of glue all over where the patches were supposed to be, thus making it even harder to try to stab a needle through to sew it, which I eventually ended up having to do. I ended up just tacking it on with needle in thread, not sewing the whole patch on. It cut the work in half and it was adequate enough to keep the patches in place. After struggling with those things and glue all year, I was in no mood to properly sew the whole thing on.

    The Girls Scout store does carry something along the lines of Badge Magic, but it’s pricey. It’s $8 for a sheet that’s just smaller than 8×11.

  5. says

    When my boys were in Scouts the local Scout Store had a heavy-duty fusible interfacing type stuff that they sold in packages – already cut into the shapes of the most common badges for both Cubs and Boy Scouts. It lasted very well, even through my eldest’s high adventure trips canoeing and to Philmont.

  6. says

    Sorry but i have to disagree with this hack. Fabric glue, sticky stuff, ect are horrible choices. Sewing is a fantastic life skill and only takes a few minutes to teach. Just learning simple sewing for patches can help kids learn how to mend a seam quickly or re-attach a button. When my 11 yr old nephew started boy scouts his mom used the glue stuff which worked ok for about 2 months before starting to come off and making the uniform look shabby and poorly put together. I picked up a simple travel sewing kit for like $5 and sat down with my nephew and showed him how to sew on his patches. I did a couple then walked him through doing the other ones. He was very proud to have the feeling of accomplishment and his uniform looked far better than his troop mates with the ironed/glued on ones plus now his mom does not need to worry about putting his patches on for him he does them himself. The scout uniform should be something the child is proud and wants to take good care of not just so they can show up to the meetings but they can build skills and memories that last them their entire lives.

  7. Janice says

    Another thing to keep in mind, though it may not be the thing anymore, was that if you have to transfer patches to a new uniform every so often, it’s easy to remove thread, harder to break a solid glue bond. We used to keep everything cookie patch when I was a girl scout, and some girls would have remnants of past uniforms on their patches from where their parents had to cut them off when the glue was stuck.

  8. says

    Dude — hot glue gun. We love it for the scout sashes. Plus, it’s not uber expensive and requiring a trip to the scout store to find it like Badge Magic (which is the best choice by far, I admit).

  9. says

    Easy-to-use mending liquid lets you fix loose hems in seconds. Make invisible repairs to your clothing, no needle, thread or sewing machine needed!