DIY: How to Hand-Sew Patches to Your Jeans or Jean Jacket

gucci denim jacket with patches
When I was in high school, I had a denim jacket that I wore almost every day. I wanted to personalize it, so I tried ironing-on (OK I asked my mom to) band patches featuring bands like Guns ‘N’ Roses and Styx. But even thought they were “iron-on” patches, they would never stick for long. And my mom usually caved and sewed them on for me, but I never learned how to do it myself. YouTube did not exist back then and such is the fate of an only child.

Fast forward to 2016 and patches are figuring prominently in every fashion show you can think of. Time to figure out this sewing thing, right?

Luckily, YouTube now exists:

What you need: denim jacket, favourite emblems/buttons/badges, strong needle and fabric glue or straight pins, a thimble.

Step 1. Place the patches on your garment to get an idea of where you would like them to be positioned. Take snaps with your phone to see what looks best.

Step 2. Secure the patches with a dab of glue or straight pins. Stay away from PVA glue, use fabric glue or an adhesive.

Step 3. Sew badges on starting from the back of your garment, and using a simple whip stitch (a.k.a. overcast) technique. Here is an easy guide.

[Photo via Gucci]

Note: this post was originally published 2013 and updated in August 2016

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