Tips on Applying Fabric Glue

Written by christina schnell
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Tips on Applying Fabric Glue
A smooth application of fabric glue eliminates bumps and wrinkles on the final project. (fashion wear image by Sid Viswakumar from

Serious crafters know that a reliable glue is the foundation of your project. Individually sewing applique pieces together could take hours, and gluing fabric with standard children's glue is ineffective and messy. The best thing about fabric glue is its permanency and ability to withstand washing and air drying. If you're intent on making that cloth stick to another surface, fabric glue is the only way to go.

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Clean the Fabric

Dirty or musty fabric won't adhere well to anything, much like clear tape won't stick to a gritty surface. Run your swatches of fabric through the washer and dryer. Avoid using dryer sheets or fabric softener, which leaves an oily residue on cloth, making it more difficult to glue together.

Test a Spot

Fabric glue will stain delicate materials like linen and silk, so test an inconspicuous patch before beginning your full application. If you are still intent on using delicate materials, make sure to apply the thinnest possible layer of glue to minimise staining and rippling.

Smooth It Out

Apply a trail of glue along your fabric seam and smooth out the line using a square piece of cardboard. Join the fabric together after you smooth and flatten the glue application line, otherwise the excess glue will cause rippling in the fabric seam. Repeat the smoothing process using the cardboard square again immediately after joining the two pieces of cloth.

Don't Stretch It

When gluing two pieces of fabric together, join the individual parts without stretching the cloth. Even fabrics you might not think of as elastic, such as 100 per cent cotton, can stretch if you're not careful. Having one swatch of fabric stretched while the other swatch remains unstretched will look sloppy and create a poor bond between the two fabrics.

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