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Secrets of Sewing On Badges

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  • #31
    Needle and thread. Hold the fabric taught with an embroidery loop. Pin the patch or use a small piece of masking tape to hold it in place.

    Before plastic backings on the patches sewing was so much easier.


    • #32
      I always recommend to new leaders and scouts to avoid badge magic unless they enjoy patches coming off after a few washings and messy residue left behind. The problem is they take my advice but they never get around to sewing the patches on because so many don't know how to sew anymore (either by hand or with a machine).

      I hand sew all my badges. I learned to sew as a Scout because my Mom said "time to do it yourself." It takes a little time but I get better and faster with every patch. I secure the patch in place with staples or tape before I begin sewing. My preference is to needle the thread through the outer edges of the patch and then through the shirt behind the patch to hide the thread.


      • #33
        I sew my own patches on. I have ever since I came home with 10 merit badges at one Court of Honor in 1983. My mother refused and explained it was time for me to learn. I did...and kept doing it until last month.

        I had this great idea of upgrading uniform shirts for both me and my son. Using the time to teach him how to sew along the way. We bought the new uniform shirt, the air conditioned variety with the vent in the back. I went to sewing one patch on and had fits, the fabric stretched all sorts of ways that the regular stuff did not. I had to sew the same patch on three times just to get it semi-close to the right spot. It still didn't look right. We ended up finding someone with a machine and the talent to whip right through the patches on both uniforms in about 20 minutes time with guidance from me.


        • #34
          Our Scout shop will have everything sewn on a new uniform for a small fee.


          • #35
            My husband is one of the nay sayers of Badge Magic, so I have to sew all of the badges on our uniforms. Sharp needle, short stitches, mono filament thread. I must admit I cheated on the Cub Scout uniform and bought the diamond plastic holder, so that the pocket was still usable. My hand did not fit in the pocket to sew the Tiger badge on.

            For a Tiger project, felt cut into 18 inches by 2.5 inches and folded over to make flaps works great as a pencil holder. You can put a button on to hold it shut, and no sew button hole, because felt doesn't fray easily. The felt is easy enough to sew through so you can use the hand embroidery needles which have large eyes and dull tips. It would be much easier than having the little guys try to sew through the embroidery on a patch.

            If you have access to a few sewing machines, making pillowcases are a breeze!

            For Bears, we are going to make polar fleece hats. I have a few sewing machines, and the boys will be learning bits about sewing. I am not sure what requirement/elective this will gain for them, but I want them to learn the skill. We have a winter event in our council, and we will be the only den there with dinosaur hats, making my boys easily identifiable -- the true reason behind my madness!

            Have fun!


            • #36
              There is a technique for getting around one of the issues mentioned previously.

              I use whatever color I grab in the drawer for sewing on patches. It doesn't need to match or be invisible.

              I position the patch and staple/pin into place to hold it.

              Just underneath the patch grab a small bit of fabric, go down 1/16th of an inch and run the needle through 2-3 embroidery threads along the edge of the badge. Go straight down into the fabric and then down 1/16th of an inch and repeat the process. Don't go too far underneath the patch so as to pucker the fabric and keep the thread inside the strands of embroidery. Totally invisible.

              Sewing on a pocket/sleeve? Hand won't fit? Put a pocket notebook or pocket protector inside and sew away! On a sleeve, roll up newspaper/magazine and slip into sleeve and let it unwind to pull the fabric smooth. Away you go!

              I found that if I start out with needle and thread (any thread) and run a race against someone that has a sewing machine and needs to run bobbin thread one color and the top thread another, position and pin, and sew the pocket shut, I can still get it done right, faster and when I'm done, no stitches of any sort show.



              • #37
                I have been sewing my son's, and now my own patches with a machine, through the backing.
                Woudl those of you that hand sew say thet the patches are as secure as mine, if you are sewing only threw the embroidered patch borders? It seems to me taht the borders aren't very strong....