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How to Sew on a Patch by Hand: Easy Steps (2024)

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how to sew on a patch by handAre you looking for an easy way to sew on a patch by hand? Whether it’s to cover up a tear or add customized flair, sewing patches onto fabric is a simple and effective process. With just some basic tools such as thread, a needle, and pins, you can create professional-looking results with minimal effort.

Follow the step-by-step instructions below to learn how to easily sew on your own patches – no special skills required! You’ll be surprised at how quickly this task can be completed when done correctly.

Key Takeaways

  • Prepare necessary supplies: needle, thread, pins, and patch.
  • Clean and prep the fabric area for patch placement.
  • Secure the patch with safety pins or adhesive tape.
  • Iron the fabric to smooth wrinkles and secure the patch.


Before you begin sewing a patch by hand, make sure you have the necessary supplies. Choose an appropriate needle and thread color that matches or contrasts with your garment’s fabric. Inspect the area where you’ll position the patch, cleaning any dirt or loose threads.

Use safety pins or adhesive tape to temporarily secure the patch for best placement. Ironing the garment smooths wrinkles and holds the patch firmly. With your needle threaded, tie a knot at the end and make your first stitch.

Take care to keep stitches straight and 1⁄4 inch from the edge as you work your way around the patch.

Focus on consistency and security with each pass of the needle until the patch feels fixed in place.

Clean Up Tear

Clean Up Tear
After gathering your materials, take a moment to prepare the torn area. Carefully trim any loose threads or fabric fuzz near the tear using small scissors.

For larger holes, consider patching the inside first before moving to the outer layer. Matching the thread color to your garment helps conceal mending work. Choose a slightly darker thread that blends into the background for lighter fabrics, as it will be less noticeable.

Knot the thread securely and begin stitching the patch in place using a basic backstitch. Make sure to keep your stitches small and even. Neatness is key for an invisible mend.

Pin or Iron Down the Patch

Pin or Iron Down the Patch
Simply place and press the patch where you need it.

Use your iron on a medium-hot setting without steam to avoid scorching the fabric or melting synthetic patches.

For sew-on patches, pin them first. Place the iron on top and apply firm pressure for 10-15 seconds to secure.

Check placement fits your project needs. Reposition and re-press if required.

Ensuring proper alignment and adhesion will lead to a durable patch that integrates seamlessly into the garment.

Take care pressing synthetic patches as excess heat can distort the material.

Be patient adjusting placement to achieve the desired look.

With some finesse, your custom patch will blend right in as if it was always part of the fabric.

Thread Your Needle

Thread Your Needle
After securing the patch in place with pins or light ironing, it’s time to thread your needle. Choose a needle type like sharps or embroidery that easily pierces fabric. Use quality thread in a color that blends into the patch or contrasts nicely.

Cut a long enough piece of thread and thread the eye of the needle from front to back. Tie a tight double knot at the end so the thread is secure. You can twist the thread around itself for extra hold.

Check for any frays in the thread and trim if needed. Knotting the thread well prevents it from pulling through the fabric. Now your needle is ready to start stitching. With the right supplies, threading the needle is a quick step before you begin reinforcing and decorating with the patch.

Start Your Backstitch

Start Your Backstitch
Just plunge that needle through the cloth and patch, dear. With needle handling practice, you’ll be a pro at patch alignment and precision backstitching.

Focus on consistent, evenly-spaced stitches. After threading and knotting, pierce the fabric and patch about 1/8 inch from the edge. Guide the needle tip up and out a 1/4 inch ahead, then back down at the starting point.

Complete each stitch by bringing the needle back up behind the previous one. Take care to keep stitches uniform in length and spacing.

Master the basics first, then get creative with contrasting threads or embroidery stitches.

Patience and precision are key; you’ll be sewing patches like a pro in no time.

Continue Stitching

Continue Stitching
And so your needle dives, rising to the surface now and again, a graceful swimmer traversing the sea of fabric. Equipped with your carefully selected needle and matching thread, you focus on your patch placement as you continue the backstitching around the perimeter.

With each piercing motion of the needle, liberation from life’s tears and holes is achieved. The rhythm of the stitching empowers you, granting mastery over fabric and form. Decorative stitches add flair while reinforcing seams. Challenges arise, but skill and patience prevail.

Soon, the patch is secured in its rightful place, its tail tied off neatly on the inside. Your hands have woven magic from simple scraps and strands, mending more than just cloth. The needlework draws to a close, and you admire your handiwork with satisfaction.

For you understand stitching is no mere chore, but an act of creation, as threads entwine to make something whole again.

Finish Your Backstitch

Finish Your Backstitch
Securely knot off your thread to finish that backstitch. Twist and rotate the thread around the needle 3-5 times to achieve a tight, secure knot before piercing the fabric.

The more rotations, the greater the knot strength. Vary your backstitch spacing and length for a customized patch attachment. Use shorter, tighter backstitches near curved edges. Space stitches further apart on straight edges for durability.

Take care not to pull too tightly when forming knots, as this can pucker fabric. Trim excess thread after knotting to eliminate loose ends.

Employ knot techniques correctly, and your hand-sewn patch will withstand heavy wear and washing. With practice, you can customize any garment with decorative patches using basic sewing skills and creativity.

Cut Your Threads

Cut Your Threads
Snip those threads after knotting for a flawless patch. Carefully cut the threads close to the knot using sharp scissors.

Trim one thread at a time while holding the knot taut. Make clean cuts in one motion to prevent fraying. Rotate and reposition the fabric as needed. For thicker patches, trim the thread on the right side for invisible knots.

Check for any loose threads and snip them too. Proper thread management gives a tidy finish.

The flawless placement and neat stitches showcase your sewing skills. Wear your personalized garment with pride, knowing your handiwork will withstand many washes.

No-Sew Options – Iron on Patches

No-Sew Options - Iron on Patches
You’ll find using iron-on patches lets you decorate or repair clothing fast. Simply place the adhesive patch where desired and apply a hot iron for 10-30 seconds.

Iron-on patches stick well but may peel over time, especially in the wash. Compare to sewing on patches, which takes more effort but creates a permanent hold. For garment repair, iron patches over holes on the inside for a subtle fix. Layer patches for extra strength.

Get creative with patches on jackets, hats, and bags. Mix colors and patterns for custom flair. Repurpose old clothes by covering stains or tears. Arrange patch clusters into a new design.

Let it cool before wearing and check edges to ensure adhesion. Iron-on patches offer a fun no-sew shortcut.


With a little practice and the right tools, sewing on a patch by hand is an easy task. To get started, gather your materials like a patch, sewing pins, needle, and thread.

Then, clean up any tears in the fabric, pin or iron down the patch, and thread your needle.

From here, begin your backstitch and continue stitching until the entire patch is secure.

Finally, knot off the thread, cut it, and you’re good to go!

If you’re short on time or a novice sewer, iron-on patches are a great alternative.

With these simple steps, you’ll be able to adorn any garment or fabric with a patch in no time.

Avatar for Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim is the founder and editor-in-chief of, a site dedicated to those passionate about crafting. With years of experience and research under his belt, he sought to create a platform where he could share his knowledge and skills with others who shared his interests.