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We all have our arts and crafts that keep us busy, and for some, it is a full-time job. However, for most of us, our craft is what we do to relax and enjoy our time away from work. Many like to work with felt, as it is a versatile type of material that you can use to make figurines, different kinds of accessories, and much more. However, if you use the best quality felt available, you still need to use high-quality glue to make your felt project successful. We will, therefore, be helping choose the best glue for felt, ensuring a good quality end product.
Table of Contents
- 1 What Is Felt?
- 2 What Is Felt Used For?
- 3 What Types of Glue Are Best to Use on Felt?
- 4 Best Glue for Felt Recommendations
- 5 Things to Consider When Purchasing Glue for Felt
- 6 How to Glue Felt to Felt
- 7 Frequently Asked Questions
What Is Felt?
Many believe that felt is one of the oldest fabrics, dating back as far as 6500 BC. This makes it even older than any knitted or woven textile fabric. Myths and stories on the origin of felt come from Western traditions, Sumerian legends, the people of Tibet, and cultures in India. There is also historical evidence of samples of felt found in Turkey thousands of years ago. In 1550, hats were made from beaver fur in the United States, and in the 20th century, felt is made from synthetic fibers like rayon, making it much cheaper to buy.
Felt is a matted type of fabric that is made up of different types of textile fibers that are condensed, pressed together, and interlocked. Traditionally wool fibers were used or any other type of animal fur. However, today felt can be made from acrylic or any other form of synthetic fibers. Wool felt is extremely fire-retardant and can extinguish any flames itself; it also has sound-dampening properties and is very absorbent. Felt has the distinctive property of being the only textile fabric that is not knitted or woven, and as such, can be shaped or cut into any form or size to make boot liners, hats, or any other item you choose.
What Is Felt Used For?
Today, felt is used to make hats and isolative items like boot linings, as it is an ideal barrier against extreme cold temperatures. The fabric also does not irritate your skin by being scratchy. Apart from items of apparel, other uses for felt include handbags, decorative pillows, toys for children, purses, shoes, mobile phone covers, wall panels for their soundproofing properties, and ornaments or decorations for special occasions.
Felt is also an ideal material to use for crafting purposes where the whole family is included. There is no age limit for using felt, as you can easily cut and shape any form and glue it together. You then have a unique product that even your three-year-old can be proud of. Felt is also an excellent choice for use on billiard tables and inside your jewelry boxes.
Advantages of Felt
Felt is good for almost everything and has so many benefits. Felt is warm, durable, strong, lightweight, it is insulating, protective, and also has soundproofing properties. As such, it is ideal for winter clothing items and can be used for walls in your home for its soundproofing, insulating and protective properties. Other advantages include:
- Unlike woven or knitted products, it does not fray so kids can practice with it making whatever they can imagine, which can include toys and decorations.
- Some felt fabrics can be fairly expensive, but generally, felt is accessible and affordable for all of your crafting projects.
- Felt fabric is very versatile and you can use it for clothing items, decorations, and accessories. The thicker felt fabric is also water-resistant, so you can use it for felt shoes and slippers.
Disadvantages of Felt
Just like any other product, the felt fabric also has its disadvantages. Understanding its abilities will help you to decide what to use it for. Although felt is very strong and durable, the moths love it and it can easily be destroyed. However, the felt that is made from synthetic fibers is free from the moth plague.
The felt fabric has no traction, which is great for socks when you want to go gliding over the wooden floor, but it is not so good when it is used as a backing for your rugs. For this very reason, the felt used for rug backing usually has rubber pads, making it non-slip. Other disadvantages include:
- Felt fabric, due to its thickness is not very elastic, and if stretched, may not return to its original shape or size.
- The felt fabric has a very coarse texture and is not like silk or satin and does not have that same luster or sheen.
- Felt fabric is very prone to shrinkage when you wash it, especially if it is made from wool fibers. So, it is recommended you hand wash it in cold water and do not dry it in the tumble dryer.
What Types of Glue Are Best to Use on Felt?
We have just considered what felt is and where you can use it, but to be able to make something creative with the felt, you need something to join or stick it together. There is always the option of sewing your felt project together, but sewing is a skill and requires time and patience, and not everyone can sew.
So, what about using glue to stick your felt project together? This is a lot easier to use, can be great fun, even the kids can take part and the result is just as good as if it were sewn. What glue is going to be the best to use for your felt project? You need to remember that the type of felt you have will determine the type of glue you should use. You have felt that is woven with 100-percent wool fibers; there is also blended felt, eco-friendly felt, and craft felt. Craft and eco-friendly felt are made up of synthetic fibers like rayon, acrylic, and polyester. Now comes the question, what type of glue should you use, and what type of glue is best for felt? Let us consider the readily available options.
Tacky glue has a proven record as one of the best glues for gluing felt to felt and can also be used for many other crafting projects where you may want to glue felt to cardboard or any other porous material. When gluing felt, you need to make sure that your glue has some tack, and it also needs to be thicker than the ordinary white glue.
Tacky glue is also very kid-friendly, which means it is odor-free and has very low toxic emissions. The glue is also fairly cheap, and most of us have some in a drawer at home. However, one disadvantage is that it takes a bit longer to dry than some of the other options available and can also be a bit messy if you use too much at one time.
Tacky glue is recommended for small craft projects where pieces of felt are cut out and stuck together. The glue is not recommended for any sculptural projects where needle felt is used, as it may show the fibers after it dries. Tacky glue is also not recommended for more serious art projects, as it is not as strong as some of the permanent adhesives on the market.
When it comes to what sticks to felt, hot glue is an ideal craft glue and can work well on most different types of felt. It sticks to the felt very easily and also dries super-fast and can be used successfully for adhering to other fabrics or fibers. The glue works with a heat gun and glue sticks, which make a permanent bond of the felt to felt and will last for a long time.
However, hot glue has some disadvantages, for example, it must be plugged into an electricity source. So, you need to be near an electrical socket, and because it requires heat, it is not kid-friendly, and children need to be supervised when using it. It will not work at all on synthetic felt as the heat will melt the synthetic fibers, and those little strings of glue it leaves behind can drive you crazy. Not to mention the occasional burning of fingers, so it is not advisable to allow children to use hot glue unsupervised.
Hot glue is recommended for sticking felt to felt, especially when tacking down felt cut-outs before you sew them down. You may find some problems when trying to stick felt to metal, so ensure your surface is clean and dry before you apply the glue.
Permanent glue, or super glue, is another option to use when sticking felt to felt or felt to any other type of material. It provides a very strong permanent bond that lasts for a very long time and dries extremely fast to a clear finish. The glue is easy to use and gives you a waterproof finish after it dries.
However, it has its disadvantages like emitting a very strong odor and needs to be applied in an area that is properly ventilated. Since it dries quickly, you should work with the glue very carefully. Do not allow any glue to get onto your hands or skin as it can bond immediately. Therefore, it is not kid-friendly, and it leaves you very little time to make any adjustments, as you need to do it right the first time.
What sticks to felt? Another option available when gluing felt to felt is fabric glue. This is a highly recommended glue for felt, as it dries fast and sticks well, and can also be used successfully when gluing felt to other surfaces like glass, wood, and much more. However, you need to be careful when using it as it can soak through the felt fibers and cause the felt to harden, making it difficult to work with. Let us now lay all of these options for gluing felt into a small table for easy reference and comparisons.
|Type of Glue||Can be Used to Glue Felt to Felt||Can be Used to Glue Felt to Other Materials||Drying Color|
|Tacky Glue||✔||Wood, foam, and paper||Clear|
|Hot Glue||✔||Paper, fabric, wood, and foam||Clear|
|Permanent Glue||✔||Plastic, wood, metal, leather, glass, paper, and fabric||Clear|
|Fabric Glue||✔||Fabric, foam, and plastic||White, but dries clear|
Best Glue for Felt Recommendations
Choosing the right glue for a felt project is very important, and from the table above, we hope you will find some answers. The glue you choose needs to be able to keep your felt pieces glued down for a long time and not cause any damage to your felt items. So, next, we have selected the three best types of glue for you.
Best Overall Felt Glue: ALEENE’S Tacky Glue
Aleene’s Original Tacky Glue can be used for many different applications and is ideal for the whole family. You can use it for craft projects, hobby assignments, or school projects, and it is ideal for any of your felt projects. Even if your projects involve different kinds of materials like foam, paper, wood, metal, ceramics, felt, or any type of fabric, Aleene’s tacky glue is your answer.
The glue is quick-drying and works as soon as it is applied to the surface. Once dry, it will give you a long-lasting permanent bond. The top of the bottle allows you to choose what type of flow you want the glue to have. When cutting the first section off with scissors, you will have a thin flow of glue. By cutting the next section off, you will have a medium flow and the last section gives you a thick flow of glue.
You can open the easy pouring nozzle wide enough to be able to dip a paintbrush into the glue, allowing you to apply the glue differently. The glue is non-toxic and safe to use for children and is very easy to clean up afterward by using some warm water. You also get a convenient cap stand, allowing you to store the glue upside down, making the tacky glue ready to use when needed.
This glue dries clear and will leave no dark stains or marks on your felt project, and you will still have the original color of your felt, even at the places where the glue was used at a joint. If your kids love to make slime, then this product is ideal to use in the mixture.
Best Hot Glue for Felt: ADTECH Mini Hot Glue Stick
The AdTech hot glue sticks are an ideal choice for any of your felt projects as they are very fast drying and will bond to your felt almost immediately after application. The glue dries clear, which means it is not visible after drying and will not yellow over time. The glue sticks are also eight inches long, allowing you more length, which helps you to complete your project quicker as you do not have to change the glue sticks too often during gluing.
The AdTech glue sticks are multi-temperature, which means they can operate at low or high temperatures. This allows you to glue your felt at lower temperatures, thus avoiding any damage to your felt. The glue sticks are also non-toxic and safe to use indoors, but due to having to use heat, they are not suitable for use by small children.
Best Permanent Glue for Felt: LOCTITE General Performance Spray Adhesive
The Loctite General Purpose Spray Adhesive is made from a superior quality formulation that has exceptional bonding strength. The glue dries very quickly, leaving a clear finish. It is ideal for gluing felt to felt and many other porous or non-porous materials, including leather, metal, glass, foil, paper, fabric, cork, foam as well as certain plastics. This glue has often been used to bond felt to a wood surface with great success.
The Loctite spray adhesive does not foam up when you spray it, so you can apply it directly onto your felt surface without any concern of ruining the texture of your felt. When sprayed on, the glue is not too runny but has a perfect consistency and will not soak into your felt. You will be left with a perfectly even layer on the surface of the felt with no need to spread the glue manually, making it very easy to work with.
Since this glue dries clear, you can use it on any color felt, and it will not leave any yellow tone once it dries. This also means that once the glue has dried properly, it is undetectable to the naked eye. When working with the glue, it does give off strong fumes and needs to be used in a well-ventilated space. Also, it should not be applied near open flames as it is very flammable.
Things to Consider When Purchasing Glue for Felt
With all the different types of felt and glue, it is very important to first consider some factors before you go out and buy the glue. You should make sure you are purchasing the right type of glue for your particular project. Below are some factors that will ensure you buy the best fabric glue for felt.
Type of Felt
Depending on what type of felt you are using for your project, this will determine the type of glue you must use. If you are using a 100 percent wool felt, or a blend of felts, then most of the glue that we have discussed so far in this article will work just fine. However, if you are using a synthetic felt, then you need to steer clear from the permanent glue and glue sticks as these types of glue will melt the synthetic fibers of the felt.
This is one of the most important factors to consider when buying your glue, as the best glue for felt must have a drying time that is not too slow or too fast. This means you need to have around 30 to 45 seconds after you have applied the glue to the felt to make any final adjustments to your felt pieces.
If you want to do a quick glue job, you will need glue that will dry super-fast. For this, you need to use glue sticks or permanent glue, but for a slower drying time, you can choose fabric glue or tacky glue.
If you are busy with gluing felt on a full-time basis, then this factor is not important. However, with all DIY projects, it is best to get the whole family involved, and that means your glue needs to be child-friendly. The glue you use needs to be easy to work with, easy to clean up, and it must be non-toxic with a low odor. You also need to be careful if you use a hot glue gun, as this is not intended to be used by children due to the heat generated, and adult supervision is necessary. Permanent glues are also not child-friendly as they may accidentally glue their fingers together.
Not all glues are the same when it comes to thickness or viscosity, as some glue, like hot glue or tacky glue, are fairly thick and this may be an option you are looking for. However, if you are looking for a thinner type of glue, then you need to buy permanent or fabric glue. However, these types of glue are not ideal when it comes to applying them to porous materials.
Type of Finish
Some types of fabric glue for felt dry to a matte finish, while others remain glossy. So, whatever your plan or project is, it is important to find the right glue. Matte finish glue may be the better option as it does not easily catch the eye. When using adhesive for felt, you need to be sure your choice of glue dries clear and not cloudy, as this may spoil your whole project.
Type of Project
If your project involves the kids or if it is for a school project, then the tacky glue is an ideal choice as it will be able to hold the cut-out felt pieces perfectly together. However, if your project is more serious, where pieces of felt and other artistic efforts are required, then ordinary white glue is not recommended.
If you are after glue that lasts for a long time, then the permanent or hot glues are the answer. Not only will they give you a permanent job, but they are also waterproof, keeping your project safe for a long time.
How to Glue Felt to Felt
Felt is such an amazing material to work with and it will not fray when you cut it. There are so many DIY craft projects that you can enjoy using felt, and for most of the smaller projects, you can use old leftover felt pieces. In this way, you can accumulate leftover pieces and have a range of different colors, which is ideal for any project you have in mind. Some of these projects may include Christmas decorations, birthday gifts, designing flowers and other shapes, felt letters, making your own felt board, fun fridge magnets, felt bookmarks, and the list can go on. Simply use your imagination and make your own designs.
Cutting the Felt
First, you need to cut the felt into the shape you want. This can be tedious if you have to cut all the shapes using scissors. However, to make things much easier for you, there are products available like a die-cutting set you can purchase. For example, there is the Crafter’s Edge Fabric Dies, which has various die sets with different shapes like flowers, trees, and much more. All you do is place the die over your piece of felt and press down hard, and you cut out a perfect circle, square, or whatever shape you want.
Sticking Felt Together
How to glue felt to felt? This is the fun part of the project. There are a lot of glues available for this purpose, but the best glue to use is tacky glue as it is thick and tacky, ideal for gluing your felt together. Apply just enough glue to each piece of felt, if you add too much the glue seeps through the felt and will be seen on the other side when it dries. If you apply too little glue to the felt, it will not stick properly, and your pieces could come loose.
Layer the shaped pieces of cut felt on top of each other until you have the design of flowers, trees, or whatever you want to create. Then press them lightly but firmly down until they are securely in place. Now you can frame it or attach it to a card or onto a felt board.
Can You Stick Felt Without Glue?
It all depends on what type of felt you want to use, as wool felt will not stick well to acrylic felt. Wool felt can be stuck to wool felt as small loops on the felt will be able to hold the pieces together as you place one piece on top of the other. Rub the felt firmly until it sticks. However, this is only a temporary measure and if you want a more permanent job, you need to use glue. Here are a few more guidelines when gluing felt to felt.
- Acrylic felt is cheaper than wool felt, but if you want quality and durability, then wool felt is the answer.
- It may be difficult to cut felt with scissors, so there are cutting dies for you to use. These come in all shapes and sizes.
- When gluing felt to other surfaces there is no set drying time you just need to be patient and wait.
- When working with kids use glue that is non-toxic.
- If you need to make some precision holes in the felt use a metal hole-punch, it works perfectly.
With any craft project, you want it to look nice, which takes patience, and time. However, when it comes to working with felt, the best glue for felt is essential. We hope we have provided you with all the possible information and options so you can choose the perfect adhesive for felt for your project.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Long Will It Take for Tacky Glue to Dry?
Tacky glue is the best glue that sticks to felt, but you can also use fabric glue, permanent glue, and hot glue works well. Once you have applied the tacky glue, it will take about 35 minutes to dry, which is much quicker than white glue, which can take about 2 hours to dry.
What Is the Difference Between White Glue and Tacky Glue?
The consistency of tacky glue is thicker, which makes it a far better choice when it comes to using on felt than white glue. White glue tends to run and soak into the felt, leaving it hard, which can then ruin your whole project.
Can You Use Hot Glue on Felt?
You certainly can and it works like a charm on felt. The hot glue dries quickly, is easy to use, and also bonds to materials like glass, metal, plastic and of course, fabrics like felt.
How Can You Join Felt to Fabric?
For best results, use fabric or tacky glue. Lay the fabric down and ensure there are no wrinkles, then apply the glue to both surfaces. Join the two materials together and make any adjustments you need, then leave to dry.
Which Adhesive Should Not Be Used on Felt?
The adhesive that should not be used on felt is white craft glue, as this type of adhesive does not dry properly and also soaks into the felt causing problems.
Can You Apply PVA Glue to Felt?
PVA glue is one of the best glues to use on felt. The glue is also safe for children to use and is non-toxic, and can be used on many other surfaces, for example, you can use the glue on wood, foam, and much more.
Can You Use Fabric Glue on Felt?
Fabric glue can be used on felt and also for any other craft project. However, be careful as some brands leave blotches when dry. Fabric glue is ideal for use on children’s projects, but when a more professional job is required, other types of glue such as hot glue or permanent glue are preferable.