An Essential Guide to Sewable VELCRO® Brand
When it comes to clothing customisation and creations, or other forms of craft using fabric, then VELCRO® Brand tape offers itself as a widely versatile and dependable fastening. There are a range of VELCRO® Brand hook and loop products that can all be attached to surfaces in different ways, but the most reliable for use with fabric has to be sew-on tape.
We’ve put together this guide offering everything you need to know about sewable VELCRO® Brand hook and loop, including how it differs from other forms of hook and loop, its benefits and tips for using it.
The Difference Between Self-Adhesive & Sew on VELCRO® Brand Strips
As its name suggests, self-adhesive VELCRO® Brand tape will adhere to a surface readily, without the need for you to intervene in any way. Typically, all you need to do is peel away the sticker backing, then attach the strips of hook and loop to the corresponding surfaces you want to be stickable together. You will then need to wait 24 hours before attaching the hook and loop together, as this gives the adhesive time to fully bond.
There is another form of self-adhesive hook and loop that requires a bit more effort to attach, this being iron-on tape. Again, this is pretty self explanatory to use – you simply peel off the tape backing, attach it to your desired surface (typically fabric) and press over this with an iron, which will heat up the adhesive and allow it to bond. It can be tested once the fabric is cool.
As for sew-on VELCRO® Brand tape, this will not stick to fabric, but must instead be sewn on in order to be securely attached. This can be done either by hand or using a sewing machine, with it being ready to use as soon as it is attached.
Pros & Cons
Each of these different types of hook and loop offer their own pros and cons, especially when it comes to use on fabric.
For example, self-adhesive VELCRO® Brand tape is incredibly strong and durable when used on smooth, indoor surfaces, however it’s not as effective when used on fabrics. This is because the adhesive doesn’t stick as well to fibres as it does smooth surfaces, making it much more likely to peel away from the fabric.
Iron-on hook and loop, in comparison, is much better suited to fabrics as it uses a special, heat-activated adhesive that allows it to bond more securely. Although, this does still run the risk of peeling over time, especially if the corners of the tape have not been cut before being attached to the fabric. It’s also not best suited to lightweight fabrics.
Then you have sew-on VELCRO® Brand tape, which is made with the purpose of being used solely with fabric. Although this may seem like its applications are limited, it still has a versatile number of uses, from use on clothes and shoes to home accessories and furnishings.
When used on fabric, sew-on hook and loop is the most secure. It may take slightly longer to attach, but it is still easy enough and ensures a strong attachment that is not compromised by either use or washing.
The Benefits of Using VELCRO® Brand in Clothing
Sew-on hook and loop is incredibly durable. It’s able to maintain its effectiveness use after use, even after cycles in the washing machine or being dry cleaned. Assuming that you remember to finish off sewing with a backstitch, then chances of the thread unravelling and the hook and loop coming loose are highly unlikely.
With that said, it’s still easy to remove or replace if needed, without marking the fabric it was used on, simply by cutting and unpicking the thread used to secure it in the first place.
Whilst limited to use mainly on fabrics, there are still various uses for sew-on VELCRO® Brand tape. It can be used on a wide variety of fabrics from delicate ones, such as organza, to thicker ones, such as leather.
Not only can it be used as an easy-to-use fastening in clothing items, but it can also be used on shoes, accessories, home accessories and even in medical applications. Furthermore, there are different types of sew-on hook and loop available. For example, VELCRO® Brand offers fire-retardant and waterproof options for industrial and/or outdoor use.
You can also dye sew-on hook and loop using fabric dye (assuming you use a white coloured base), allowing it to better match the material you are attaching it to.
Unlike self-adhesive VELCRO® Brand tape, which you must leave for 24 hours after attaching to a surface before sticking the hook and loop sides together, sew-on VELCRO® Brand tape can be used straight away after attachment, making it a quick and efficient solution.
Compared to other types of fasteners (such as buttons, zips, poppers or hooks and eyes), hook and loop tape is an affordable and cost effective solution. Available in rolls of tape, you can buy bulk VELCRO® Brand tape, or alternatively have it cut to a specific size when ordering – either way, there is an option to suit both your quantity needs and budget.
Not only that, but in comparison to buttons or zips (which may fall off more easily or malfunction), hook and loop is much more reliable and easily replaceable over time, further adding to its cost-effectiveness.
Tips & Tricks for Sewing with VELCRO® Brand Tape
1. Use a sturdy needle
VELCRO® Brand hook and loop tape uses a rubber resin or nylon base. Due to the thickness of this, it can be difficult for a delicate needle to pierce through, especially when you add in the layer of loop fibres or polypropylene hooks that are also in the way.
As such, make sure you have a sturdy needle to hand to be able to effectively pierce through each side of hook and loop tape, as well as the fabric that these are being sewn onto. This will avoid the chances of your needle breaking and make it easier to sew the tape onto your chosen material with minimal resistance.
2. Use matching thread
Remember to use a matching thread to the colour of the fabric that you’re sewing the hook and loop onto, rather than the colour of the hook and loop itself. Because the hook and loop will be out of sight, it doesn’t matter if the thread does not match it, however to keep the fastening inconspicuous from the outside, then you’ll want the thread to blend in with the fabric.
3. Carry out a test run
It’s always best to carry out a test run on some scrap fabric before going ahead and sewing onto your final fabric. Take a small square of scrap fabric (ideally the same as the fabric you’ll be using, or at least a fabric of a similar thickness and quality) and cut a small strip of hook and loop tape, then sew the two together as a practice run.
This will help you identify if there are any issues and whether you should do anything differently, such as using smaller/thinner strips of hook and loop tape or using a different needle..
4. Align correctly
In order for each side of the hook and the loop tape to stick together, they must be correctly aligned. If they are misaligned, then you will not benefit from the full effect and security of their sticking power, so ensure that they line up as they should before sewing them down.
5. Trim the corners
If you look closely at sew-on hook and loop tape, you’ll notice that the hooks and the loops don’t actually reach the very edges of the tape, which is partly down to the fact that it offers space to be sewn onto without eating into the hook and loop space, offering maximum attachment.
However, because of this, the corners of the tape can often cause discomfort and irritation when used on clothing. Cutting these corners is a simple little trick that removes this cause of discomfort without affecting the integrity of the hook and loop tape itself.
6. Remember to backstitch
Whether you’re hand sewing or using a machine, always remember to add a couple of backstitches at the end before you cut the thread. This ensures that the hook and loop tape is secure on the fabric and is less likely to come loose.
Browse Our Range of Hook & Loop Products
Are you in need of sew-on hook and loop tape for your next crafting project? We’ve got you covered here at MPD Hook & Loop.
As premium distributors of VELCRO® Brand tape, we offer a range of their quality hook and loop products, including standard, flame retardant and low profile sew-on tape. We also offer their self-adhesive solutions, as well as VELCRO® Brand hook and loop cable ties, coins and straps.
For more information on the products we sell or for advice on which may best suit your required applications, then don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today – our friendly team will be happy to help!