Iron-on patches are not always the perfect solution, but they do provide an easy no-sew way to mend a hole.
Where to Find Iron-On PatchesIron-on patches are available in sewing supply shops, in most department stores, and in some drug stores. These handy repair shortcut items are available in colors that closely match almost any color fabric. Various sizes are also easy to find, so both large and small holes can be easily repaired.
Disadvantages of Iron-On PatchesThe main drawback of iron-on patches is the fact that they are not made of stretchy fabric. If you happen to rip a pair of sweatpants, or any knitted garment, the patches will not hold. The patches will, however, keep the hole from expanding until a more suitable patch can be applied.
The patches also occasionally do not stay attached to firm fabric, but that is usually a result of not using enough heat to bond the adhesive backing to the fabric.
Basic Tips for Using Iron-On PatchesThe patches can be sewn on either the right or wrong side of the fabric depending on personal preference. If the color is matched well then the patch will barely show when attached to the outside. If there is a color variation it will be ideal to turn the garment inside out and attach the patch to the wrong side of the fabric.
How to Apply an Iron-On Patch
- Clean any dirt or debris off of the fabric around the tear with a soft-bristled brush. The patch needs a clean surface or it will not adhere properly and washing will fray the fabric.
- Set the iron on the hottest setting the fabric can stand. The patch will require a hot iron to melt the backing and create a secure bond.
- Center the patch over the hole, either on the right or wrong side of the fabric according to personal preference.
- Place a damp cloth over the patch to protect the fabric and hold the iron over the area where the patch has been placed for 60 seconds.
- Let the patch cool completely before checking to see if it bonded with the fabric.
- If the bond is not secure turn the iron to a higher setting and repeat step 4.