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Secrets of Sewing On Badges

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  • Secrets of Sewing On Badges

    So what are the secrets of sewing stuff on a uniform?

  • #2
    First I Magic Badge them, then I sew them on.. But I am thinking of using Velcro for Scout Advancement Patches for the pockets. that way they can change them out easier...

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    • #3
      The toughest part -- for me at least -- is holding the patch where I want it while sewing it on. I've learned to get them exactly where I want them, staple them in place then sew them on. You gotta remember to take all the staples out or you'll catch grief from folks who think the patches are only stapled on.

      Second, don't try to sew through the plastic part of the patch (needles tend to go through fingers more easily than plastic-backed patches). You only need to catch the edge of the whipping around the outside of the patch.

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      • #4
        I would love to see a BSA uniform system like the Army & Air Force fatigues you see in airports where there are huge patches of Velcro on the sleeves and pocket areas to add & change patches as need be. Then all the badges & POR patches would come pre-Velcroed and we could add things quickly.

        As it is, we encourage Scouts to sew patches & badges on their own uniform, and have sewing nights twice a year just after elections.

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        • #5
          Thanks a great idea, the sewing nights..

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          • #6
            A couple of straight pins thru the patch into the shirt has worked for 100 years. Pin it, sew it, wear it.

            Stuff like patch magic/badge magic is good if you never plan to remove the patch, but it's horrible to deal with if you ever need to move the patch to a new shirt or replace it with something else.

            Velcro is nice, but I've already seen boys lose patches because someone thought matching the military was a good idea.(This message has been edited by eolesen)

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            • #7
              YOu take out the threads and then put your uniform shirt in a mesh bag, have it dry cleaned and the patches will come off leaving nothing of the badge magic on the shirt.

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              • #8
                I have attempted it with four different scout shirts. Dry cleaning might make the badge fall off, but the residue will remain and be nasty as heck.

                Never use badge magic. You are killing a shirt when you use it. It peels up at the edges. It gets goo outside the patch.

                The only way I have ever been able to remove the goo is with Goo B Gone and a wire brush.

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                • #9
                  Hmmm! Very good ideas so far!


                  Any ideas on how to work ideas like that into Cub Scout or Boy Scout programs so they get used by boys and parents?

                  I mostly work with Tiger Cubs. I'm thinking you could make a den project out of ironing on a patch of some kind to a piece of cloth using Badge Magic and stapling a patch onto a piece of cloth and giving boys the chance to work WITH THEIR PARENT PARTNER on sewing that on.

                  My aim would be to introduce the boys to sewing and to pass on to parents methods they can use in getting a new uniform set up.

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                  • #10
                    On thesewing machine use clear nylon thread on top and scout tan oe cubscout blue in the bobbin.

                    Use a heavy duty needle. Hold with straight pins.

                    For tigers we had some success having a volunteer do all the shirts for the den at the beginning of the year with the basic stuff. After they are awarded the bobcat or tiger do a well announced uniform inspection. Some parents have to be taught that sewing on the patch is part of them honoring their son's accomplishment.

                    Some parents truely do not think they know how to sew. Some parents are willing to run the shirt to an alterations shop to avoid this small task.

                    -- Ak

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                    • #11
                      Forget Badge Magic. I used it on my son's and my uniform. After a while, the council strip started to come up at the corners. Later, we moved to a new council and had to change out the council strip, pack numbers, den numbers, etc. What a mess. Even the dry cleaners said they couldn't get all of the residue off. I had to work at it with goo off and a stiff brush.

                      As for sewing on patches, instead of straight needles, I use looped tape on the back to hold the patches in position while I sew them on. Once I get about half way done, I remove the tape and finish sewing the patch on. I used to use needles, but for some reason they alwasy moved or bunched up.

                      As for teaching Tigers to sew patches...wow. Hopefully they have the dexterity to sew the patches. I still sometimes poke my fingers with the needle. You may want to start with an easier project (e.g. leather wallet where they "sew" the leather cord through the holes on the edge, etc.) If you start some thing too hard, it'll frustrate them (and the parents).

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                      • #12
                        I plan on having my Webelos den sew backpacks/totes (Craftsman) for carrying their handbooks and log/notebooks and other supplies to Den Meetings. Basic rope/canvas things, but with plenty of space for sewing on patches to personalize them. I need to do something, by the end of the Bear Year only one boy was bringing his handbook to the meetings. If its kept in a bag to grab-and-go, maybe it will arrive better.

                        As for my badge method, I hand-sew only, starting by sewing down 2-3 corners to anchor the patch and then completing the seem. I don't have to cut the thread while doing this, I make a stitch in one corner, then cross to the other corner between the shirt and the patch, and make the other stitch.

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                        • #13
                          If you don't have luck with straight pins, an easy way to hold the badges/patches until you get them sewn on is to use Clear scotch tape. When your done sewing, if sewing by hand, just peel off tape, if using a machine & go over the tape it is then perforated and peels off. :0) Also, the clear thread tip is priceless!

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                          • #14
                            I refused to sell anything without trying it out when I worked for supply. So I tried the original Badge Magic, the stuff in an aerosal can.

                            IT WAS HORRIBLE! Never again will I use anything but needle and thread, pins, or staples.

                            As for hints, I've seen staples used to hold it in place and also pins.

                            True story, I had to wear a uniform at the HS I went to that included a patch. For the last 6 months of HS, my patch was stapled on.

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                            • #15
                              Seattle,

                              Working with tigers there is an elective for sew on a button. This is a challenging task to do in a group setting with the age group. (Usually there is some sewing in the first grade year. My sons sewed a large (2 inch wide) button onto burlap with thick embrodary thread. This was a challenging task for Tiger aged boys.) Perhaps you could do this elective while parents sew a patch on their son's shirts.

                              (BSA patches with all that stuff on the back are hard to sew.)

                              (At day camp we sewed dog booties with dental floss which is what the mushers use to make repairs and very easy to see.)

                              By the Bear year we made red patch vests out of felt, using the sewing machine. Felt is a very forgiving fabric. IMHO 4th / 5th grade is when some real sewing can take place. (Webelos craftsman.)

                              I've had my new crossovers come over to my house to do their new shirts on the sewing machine. All their work, just my supervision. About 45 minutes per boy.

                              I have to echo everyone else -- no badge magic.

                              -- AK

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