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all about GLUE
Topic Started: Apr 24 2006, 03:49 PM (2,137 Views)
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"more is more"


You've heard that saying, "It's the glue that holds everything together." ? Well, that is the truth--GLUE holds EVERYTHING I make together.

And my favorite glue is Aleene's Original Tacky Glue in the bronze bottle. Excellent for use on wood, metal, FABRIC, leather, paper, ceramics, etc. Available at fabric, craft & department stores. It is the best for banner and flag building. Why?
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  • water soluble
  • not affected by cold or heat
  • long working time
  • dries clear & flexible
  • inexpensive
  • non-toxic
  • comfortable working time
Now, the water soluble thing is both a blessing and a curse--but more of a blessing. I have taken glue that is completely dry and re-hydrated it, usually by laying a wet cloth over it. The glue will start to whiten, and then you can separate whatever you have glued. And if you don't let it get too wet...you can usually just roll off the remaining glue 'boogers' left on the fabric. Now THAT is a freeing thing, I tell you.

The curse part is just that if you take your glued banner or flag out into a heavy rainstorm for a long period of time, your designs could start to fall off. So...just don't do that.

That being said, there are applications where another kind of glue is better.

:spark: hot glue is better for working on an upright object, for example jeweling a crown. Good of attaching beading or other heavy objects. Or when something MUST be waterproof. I don't like it for other things, because I don't like to be tied to a wall, and I'm always burning myself. I also don't like that you have such a short working time and that it is so hard to change things once they are glued.

:spark: Aleene's Fast Grab. (Used to be called Extra Thick Tacky) Like Original--only thicker. Will sometimes work as well as hot glue. I like to keep some of this in my repair kits.

:spark: permanent fabric glue is better for flags and garments that you expect will become soiled and need washing. The best one I've found for that is Aleene's "OK to Wash It". A little thinner than the original Tacky Glue. And be sure to test, because some fabrics will mark.

:spark: Aleene's Jewel-It is best for when you want to permanently bond jeweling to fabric. It will not erode the silvered backing on acrylic or crystal jewels like some other clear jeweling glues (which are also very toxic, BTW.)

Can you tell I think the Aleene's glues are the best? I swear, they should pay me royalties... I've been using the stuff by the gallon for years.


Related threads:
Basic Banner Design
Basic Banner Construction
Basic Fabric primer for banner & flags
The power of perspective
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Wow! More excellent info! Is there no end to it? Posted Image
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"more is more"

a couple of more glue tips:

Avoiding glue marks
If you are dealing with fabrics that show glue marks, you can often avoid them by spreading the tacky glue quite thinly, waiting a bit until it begins to tack and then laying the fabric over it. Smoothe the fabric over the glue gently so as not to force the glue far up into the weave of the fabric.

Strategically hiding glue marks

:spark: Try to glue shapes down just around the edges. Then, when you glue finishing trims over top of them, the glue marks are hidden.

:spark: When joining silky fabrics, you WILL get a glue mark. In my celebration streamers, which are pieces of jewel-toned silky fabric, there are definite glue marks at the joints from the washable fabric glue. Adding trim would make the streamers too stiff and heavy. So the solution I came up with was to cover the glued joints with permanent black marker. It made the streamers look like stained glass and added zero weight or stiffness.

Sealing raw edges
Thinned down Tacky glue can be used to seal raw fabric edges and is a lot less expensive than Fray Check or other formulations made for that purpose. This can be really helpful if you are doing a mammoth project that goes on for yards & yards. I think there is an Aleene's product for sealing edges too. It's probably called something clever like "Frayed Not".

However, most of the time, if I'm sealing a fabric edge I figure why not make it decorative at the same time. So I generally use fabric glitter paint applied in a thin bead and brushed flat.
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Resident Rebbi

On one of the major projects, the cord used to outline significant portions of the letters and features was a particularly difficult choice to work with. It was dubbed "character building cord" by those working with it. It did not like being glued in any of the normal ways. It would unglue itself, it would refuse the glue altogether. It was not fun. :banghead:

Helena, wanna share about how to "tame" those rascally bits of stuff that don't make sharp corners or don't like to stay glued?

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"more is more"

OK. There are 2 good (& 1 barely adequate) ways to handle the issue of recalcitrant, wirey cords.

1. Lay your glue line, and pin through the cord into the fabric at intervals of about 1 inch. Remove the pins after the glue has tacked but before it is dry or you will be using pliers, popping off pinheads, and saying some not-so-nice words.

2. Lay the glue line and wait about 5-7 minutes until the glue starts to tack. Add the cord then. You will still have to pin sharp corners, but it's a lot less work than using 500 pins along the whole route.

3. Use a hot glue gun. This works but is an inferior choice because you have very little working time before the glue sets, and changing anything later is very messy.
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