How to Glue the Fabric on a Guitar Case

Updated April 17, 2017

Guitar cases serve both an aesthetic and a utilitarian purpose. The primary purpose of the case is to protect the guitar from injury and damage. However, the fabric also contributes to the overall appearance of the case. If you are building your own case or modifying an old case, a variety of options exist for both the exterior and interior sides of the case.

Measure the outside and inside of the case with a tape measure. Write down the measurements. Purchase Tolex fabric for the outside of the case and crushed velvet fabric for the inside of the case.

Cut the Tolex and crushed velvet with scissors to fit the dimensions of the case. Add an extra inch to the Tolex to wrap around the edges of the case.

Lay the case on a flat surface with the exterior bottom side facing upwards. Spray contact cement on the left side of the case - apply the fabric working from the left to the right of the case. The spray adhesive dries quickly, so concentrate on 3 to 4 inches at a time. Attach the Tolex to the case. Smooth the Tolex with your hand to prevent wrinkles and air bubbles. Continue the procedure until the case is completely covered. Wipe off excess glue with a damp rag.

Place the case on a flat surface with the interior side of the case facing up. Spray contact cement to the interior sides of the case, fold the extra inch of the Tolex over the interior edge and glue it to the case. Smooth the Tolex with your hand, and trim off the excess with a utility knife.

Apply the crushed velvet fabric to the inside of the case using the same technique. Spray the contact cement on the interior surface of the case working from the left side to the right side of the case. Smooth the fabric with your hands to prevent wrinkles.

Trace the shape of the guitar on 2 pieces of styrofoam. The styrofoam will conform to the shape of the guitar and prevent the guitar from moving inside of the case. Cut out the guitar pattern with a saw or knife with a serrated blade.

Spray the contact cement on the styrofoam and cover it with the crushed velvet fabric. Glue it to the interior sides of the guitar case.


Tolex is a durable vinyl material that works well on guitar cases and amplifiers. It is available in a variety of colours and patterns. The two most common colours for guitar cases are black and tweed. Tolex is available at various online sites that specialise in guitar fabric. Crushed velvet fabric is available at fabric stores in a variety of colours.

Things You'll Need

  • Tape measure
  • Tolex
  • Crushed velvet
  • Scissors
  • Contact cement spray adhesive
  • Utility knife
  • Rags
  • Styrofoam
  • Serrated knife/saw
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About the Author

Robert Russell began writing online professionally in 2010. He holds a Ph.D. in philosophy and is currently working on a book project exploring the relationship between art, entertainment and culture. He is the guitar player for the nationally touring cajun/zydeco band Creole Stomp. Russell travels with his laptop and writes many of his articles on the road between gigs.