Patches are added to garments for various reasons. Whether it be for plain cosmetics only, or to show belonging to a certain unit, or to display special achievements, these add-ons give a whole new different feel and meaning to a piece of clothing.
Patches come in different designs, materials, and makes that ultimately dictate its overall quality. And of all the factors that are considered in making a custom patch, perhaps one of the most important is the patch backing.
Typically, our embroidered patch is made up of threads that are designed and sewn to make a specific image on a piece of fabric. After this process, patch backing may be added to the backside of the patch. These patch backings come in different styles and materials, of which are selectively picked to complement the material in which it will be attached.
In regard with this, before customizing one’s own patch, it is only proper to thoroughly know the pros and cons of the different patch backing options in relation to the garment material where it will be placed.
As we have implied, patch backing is only optional. It is an add-on that gives a patch extra features like rigidity, ease of attachment and removal, to name a few. Although we do not recommend it, one is always given the option to have his patch “raw.”
A patch with no backing is relatively thinner compared to those with backing. This helps to make the patch have a softer look and feel. Consequently, this thinness gives the patch the ability to bend and flow smoothly with the movement of the person wearing it.
For these reasons, a patch with no backing is best suited for garments made of thin materials. The best example of this is cotton. The thinness of the patch and the fabric makes sewing for attachment easy. Conversely, it is not recommended for materials that are thick and rigid. This includes leather or vinyl. The stiffness of the said materials will negate the softness of the patch. Additionally, a backless patch wears out faster than leathers and vinyl, making the patch look “out of place” over time.
A patch that has tape backing goes very well with any type of material. However, this kind of patch is not permanent. The adhesive used in this will eventually wear out and lose its gluing effect. For this reason, a tape-backed patch is commonly used only as a quick option in one-day events like Halloween or New Year.
Velcro is an entirely different adhesive material compared to tape. Velcro lasts longer than tape and it can be frequently attached and removed from a piece of clothing with ease.
Our Velcro-backed patch adheres to any kind of material. However, because velcro is known to be “non-intrusive”, it is commonly used for delicate or sensitive garment materials like polyester, nylon, or spandex.
Iron On Backing
A patch with iron on backing allows for quick and easy permanent attachment. It is put in a piece of clothing by ironing the patch covered with damp towel to the garment. This is done for about half a minute.
The heating required in this process makes iron on backing patch not suitable to certain types of material. Vinyl, leather, polyester, spandex, and nylon easily deteriorate with heat so iron on backing patch is not recommended. Conversely, this kind of patch goes perfectly well with materials that are typically ironed after washing. Such examples include cotton and denim.
Other Backing Options
Other backing options include the button loop and plastic backing.
Patches with button loop backing essentially have a looped thread at the backside of the patch. The loop allows for hanging of the patch to buttons or lapel pins. Traditionally, this kind of backing is the preferred option of different scouting organizations in the world.
On the other hand, plastic backing is just like a supplementary tool for the main patch backing options. Patches with plastic backing will have enhanced support. This will render the patch durable and less susceptible to loss of form and shape. Plastic backing can be used in conjunction with any of the primary patch backing options.