What Is Fusible Fleece?

Written by joanne thomas
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What Is Fusible Fleece?
Fusible fleece is useful for quiltmaking. (quilts image by Christopher Martin from Fotolia.com)

Fusible fleece is a useful and versatile material with applications in a range of sewing and craft projects. As its name suggests, fusible fleece is treated to adhere to other fabrics, and it has a soft, lofty texture. Using fusible fleece is simple as long as you follow the manufacturer's instructions and recommendations.

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Definition

Fusible fleece is a lofty fabric made from synthetic threads, usually polyester. It is usually white. It has an adhesive surface that will bond with other fabrics when they are pressed together using an iron. Some varieties of fusible fleece are adhesive on one side, others on both. It is soft, lightweight and thicker than regular interfacing.

Varieties

Fusible fleece is sold in packaged, pre-cut lengths and off the bolt by the yard. It is available in a range of thicknesses, and you can also customise the thickness needed for your project by layering pieces of fusible fleece. The fusible side is usually indicated on the fleece somehow, sometimes with a marking along an edge or a printed label.

Instructions

Fusible fleece usually comes with instructions, either on the packaging or printed onto the fleece itself. Generally, you cut the piece to size, place the it on your ironing board with the fusible side up, place the fabric over the fleece (right side up) and press with an iron. Apply even pressure all over the fabric. The strength of the bond depends on the way you press the fabric.

For an extra-strong bond, use a damp press cloth between the iron and the fabric, and press at a low temperature, holding for 10 seconds in each spot. Make sure you have the correct sides of the fusible fleece and fabric together to avoid a sticky mess on your iron. If you are unsure, test with some scrap pieces of fabric and fleece.

Common Uses

Fusible fleece makes an excellent interfacing when you want to add thickness, softness and some structure to your sewing project. The loftiness and flexibility of fusible fleece has advantages over stiffer interfacing when you want to make something soft, like a quilt, or add padding, for example, when sewing a camera case. Using fusible fleece in a quilt eliminates the need for pinning and basting as the layers will be fused together. Some brands of fusible fleece will adhere to cardboard, wood and other surfaces, making it useful for adding padding in many kinds of craft projects.

Washing and Care

Because it is a synthetic fabric, fusible fleece is machine washable and can usually be tumble dried. If your project incorporates fusible fleece and other fabrics, check the washing recommendations for the other fabrics also before machine washing the item. Polyester is especially hard-wearing and strong, so items made with fusible fleece should last well and be easy to launder.

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