The basic form of most military patches actually come without any additional backing. This means that even after the designs have been embroidered onto the patches, the threads will still show through the underside. These patches are considerably more flexible and are much thinner in comparison to their counterparts with backings. As a result, these patches without any backing are best worn as adornments on jackets, uniforms, and other fabrics rather than as stand-alone pieces.
Meanwhile, although military patches with a plastic backing are much stiffer than those without any backing, they are still thin enough to be sewn onto clothing. However, since the plastic backing does allow that patches to lay flat and keep its shape, it can also be displayed on its own.
Plastic backings can be applied onto the underside of patches regardless of their shape or size. Though the threads will still show through the often transparent backing, the matte plastic coating will give the patch a much neater appearance.
For customers who want a more customizable backing option, they can avail of a heatseal or iron-on backing instead. As the name implies, customers can use a hot home iron in order to attach a backing onto their military patches. Unfortunately, compared to the professionally applied backings, heatseal backings have a number of limitations in terms of both durability and versatility.
These home-applied backings have a tendency to come off after a few washes. Therefore, it is recommended to incorporate additional stitches after ironing on the shiny coating.
Likewise, this type of backing cannot be used on synthetic fibers and fabrics. As a result, it is vital that you take note of the composition of your patch before availing of this option.
If you will be using the patches temporarily or for one-time events only, you can make use of an adhesive backing instead as another customizable backing alternative. Adhesive backings make use of a strong glue that is applied on the underside of the patches thus essentially turning them into fabric stickers for your garments. They can be customized to fit the exact shape and size of your patch, or they can otherwise be ordered in a larger size for easier application.
Although the glue is much stronger than ordinary white glue or paste, it is still not strong enough to last after a washing cycle. Likewise, even if they are able to survive a gentle scrubbing, the adhesive will still rub off eventually.
Velcro backings are a popular option for patches that are not required to stay in a single area for an extended amount of time. The Velcro allows users to remove and reattach the patches as many times as necessary.
One sided Velcro backing is best suited for garments that are already equipped with a fastener for the Velcro backing, while uniforms without fasteners can make use of the two-sided Velcro backings instead. These patches come with both sides of the Velcro so all you will have to do is to sew on one side onto your garment in order to secure it. Nevertheless, make sure that the Velcro is not merely glued onto the patches, but that it is securely sewn on in order to guarantee its durability.
Another option for patches that need to be frequently applied and reapplied in different areas is a pin backing. This type of backing enables customers to use the patches like a brooch and transfer it from one garment or accessory to another.
Finally, a button loop backing is another good backing alternative for military patches that need to be transferred from location to location. This type of backing uses a short loop of thread to allow the patch to hang from the button of your garment or uniform. Despite the thin thread used, these types of backing can actually securely attach onto any clothing or accessory with a button.