Is It Better to Iron-on or Sew-on a Patch?

Written by Robin Brown on June 9, 2023
Hey there! So, you've got a cool patch you want to put on your favorite jacket, huh? Well, you're in the right place because today, we will tackle a question that is bugging many people. Should you iron on or sew on those awesome patches? It's a tough decision, right?

Now, we all want our patches to stay put and look great for as long as possible. But here's the thing: different methods have their pros and cons. Ironing might seem super easy and quick, but will it stand the test of time? On the other hand, sewing might take more effort, but is it worth it in the long run?

In this article, we will dive deep into this patch dilemma. We'll break down the advantages and disadvantages of both iron-on and sew-on methods. You will know if you can sew on an iron-on patch or not. So, grab your jacket and determine which method will give you the best results!
Iron on Patches

Pros and Cons of Iron-on Patches

Let's talk about iron-on patches and break down their pros and cons. You need to remember one thing when it comes to the difference between the iron-on and sew-on patches. Iron-on patches adhere to fabric using heat. In comparison, sew-on patches are stitched onto the fabric with a needle and thread.

Iron-on patches work by using heat. They activate the glue on the back side of the patch. You place the patch on the fabric with the adhesive side facing down. On top, you apply an iron or heat press.

The heat melts the glue, allowing it to bond to the fabric. When the patch cools, the glue hardens, holding it in place. This method offers a convenient way to attach patches. It makes it quick and easy to personalize clothing and accessories. Now let's compare the pros and cons of iron-on patches vs. sew-on ones.

Pros of Iron-on Patches:

Here are a few of the benefits it has iron-on patches vs. sew-on:

- Convenience. The difference between the iron-on and sew-on patches is that the former is very easy to use. You only need an iron and heat-resistant surface, like an ironing board. No sewing skills are required! Just place the patch correctly, apply heat, and voila! It's glued in place.

- Quick Application. Iron-on patches you can apply in a matter of minutes. You don't have to spend a lot of time carefully stitching them onto your fabric. It makes them a great option if you're in a hurry or want to add patches temporarily.

Cons of Iron-on Patches:

Now let's look at the disadvantages:

- Durability. While iron-on patches may seem convenient, they may not be as durable as sew-on patches. Over time, the adhesive on iron-on patches can weaken, causing them to peel or fall off. Washing and drying garments with iron-on patches can also affect their longevity.

- Limited Versatility. Iron-on patches are best suited for fabrics that can withstand heat, such as denim or cotton. They may adhere better to delicate or synthetic fabrics. On the other hand, you can apply sew-on patches to a wider range of materials.

In the debate over whether to iron-on or sew-on patches, it's important to consider the pros and cons. Sew-on patches offer convenience and quick application. But they may not be as durable or versatile as sew-on patches. Ultimately, your choice depends on factors such as the fabric you work with. Also, consider the durability and overall look you want.
Sew on Patches

Pros and Cons of Sew-on Patches

Now, let's discuss sew-on patches and consider their pros and cons. When comparing the difference between iron-on and sew-on patches, it is important to note that sew-on patches can be attached to the fabric by sewing with a needle and thread.

First, you need to position the patch on the fabric. Thread a matching or contrasting thread into the needle. Sew the patch to the fabric with small stitches, fixing it in place.

The sewing process ensures a strong and durable attachment. You can guarantee the patch will stay in place even with regular use and washing. Sewn-on patches are versatile in terms of fabric compatibility and customization options. It makes them popular for those who prefer a durable patch application method. Still, let's take another look at iron-on patches vs sew-on. And now, we'll look at the pros and cons of sew-on patches.

Pros of Sew-on Patches:

First, let's understand the good side of this type of patch:

- Durability. You can know sewn-on patches by their durability. Because they are securely sewn to the fabric, you have a minimal chance they will fall off. Even with regular washing and wearing, they will still be in place. It is a great option for long-term use.

- Versatility. Unlike iron-on patches, sew-on patches can be applied to a wide range of fabrics. We can even include delicate or synthetic materials. The sew-on process provides a more secure attachment. It makes sew-on patches suitable for many fabric types instead of iron-on patches.

- Personalization. Sew-on patches offer more opportunities for personalization. When sewing, you can experiment. You can use different verses, thread colors, and even add embellishments. It gives you more creative freedom to personalize your patches. You can achieve a unique design.

Cons of Sew-on Patches

Now, let's move on to the more negative side of sew-on vs. iron-on patches:

- Time and effort. Sewing patches takes more time and effort than iron-on patches. You must thread a needle, position the patch correctly, and stitch it securely. It can be time-consuming, especially if you have multiple patches to attach.

- Sewing skills are required. Sewing on patches necessitates basic sewing skills. If you're not comfortable with sewing or don't have the necessary tools, this method may be more challenging for you. It may require some practice and patience to achieve neat and professional-looking results.

In the debate between these patches, sewn-on patches are durable and versatile. However, they do require more time, effort, and sewing skills. When choosing between these two methods, consider your personal preference.

Choosing the Right Method

Has your case come down to choosing the right method of attaching iron-on or sew-on patches? It is imperative to consider the difference between iron-on and sew-on patches.

Do you prefer simplicity and speed? You are best suited to iron-on patches. You can apply them quickly with an iron-on, and they don't require any sewing skills. 

On the other hand, if you value long-lasting results, sew-on patches are a reliable option. They require sewing skills and take longer to attach. Sew-on patches are sewn to the fabric.

Finally, can you sew on an iron-on patch? Yes, you can! If you have an iron-on patch but prefer the longevity of sew-on patches, you can choose to sew it on instead. Simply ignore the adhesive backing and sew it onto the fabric using a needle and thread.

Ultimately, deciding between iron-on or sew-on patches depends on your priorities. And our company will help you choose the best patches.


What is the best way to attach patches to fabric?

The best way to attach patches to fabric depends on your priorities, but sew-on patches generally provide better durability.

Is it okay to sew on iron-on patches?

Yes, it's okay to sew on iron-on patches if you prefer the longevity and security of sewn attachments.

What is the best sewing technique for patches?

The best sewing technique for patches is to use small, even stitches around the edges to ensure a secure attachment.
Article written by Robin Brown
Robin Brown is part of the content team at Vivipins where he develops resources to help customers start and grow their own businesses.
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