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Velcro; what fabric will it attach to?

Discussion in 'Puppet News' started by zoetrope, May 6, 2004.

  1. zoetrope

    zoetrope Well-Known Member

    Hi, I'm thinking of making an "anything" or "whatnot" type muppet, with eyes and noses and hair pieces that can attach with Velcro. I'll make the head out of foam. What material should I cover it with so the velcro hooks will hold well. I've tested felt (no good) and bare foam (so so for very light things, but not good enough). Any ideas?
  2. Puppetplanet

    Puppetplanet Well-Known Member

    It bonds to Antron Fleece really well, just push item with velcro tabs into the fabric and give a little "rub" and the hooks on the Velcro adhere to the pile of antron fleece really well. My alternative to antron is anti-pil fleece because it also has a short pile to the fabric...... but the velcro doesn't stick to well.

    Hope this helps.

    *cough, cough* Sick and with medicine head. blah!
  3. scarylarrywolf

    scarylarrywolf Well-Known Member

    If you'd rather use a more sturdy method for attaching facial features, I'd suggest using wing nuts and washers and bolts (oh my!). It just frees you up a bit when puppeteering to do more with the puppet without having to worry about the velco coming undone.
  4. zoetrope

    zoetrope Well-Known Member

    All roads lead to Antron

    Aaaah, the ubiquitous Antron fleece. Looks like I'll finally have to give in and buy some, although I'm not too fond of dying things.

    The wing nuts and bolts idea is a good one, but I want something the kids can play with too, hence the velcro. They can stick eyes ears and noses where ever they want. It won't be for any pro use. Good idea though.

    If anyone else has suggestions please let me know
  5. Buck-Beaver

    Buck-Beaver Well-Known Member

    Larry's wingnut method is an interesting approach - I haven't tried that. I've done something similar with doll joints, but you have to make sure you use a type of doll joint that comes apart easily (most don't). They have the advantage of being much lighter than hardware.

    The method I usually use to attach wigs, features, etc. temporarily is to pin the item on or attached using some loose stitches that can be easily removed later.
  6. zoetrope

    zoetrope Well-Known Member

    Great ideas, but this won't work for my 5 year old (or my 1.5 year old for that matter). I'm "stuck" with velcro, and it's sounding like I'm also stuck getting and dying some Antron fleece. Anyone used other types of fleece that would work as well and could be found pre-dyed?
  7. Jinx

    Jinx Well-Known Member

    Another thing to consider would be magnets. I have embedded flexible magnetic tape between the foam "skull" and the fleece "skin" in the appropriate places, and then backed noses, eyes, etc. with flat magnets. Just make sure the polarity is correct before glueing, sewing, etc. otherwise the features will repel rather than attract!

    One benefit of this method is that is will not degrade the quality of the "skin" fabric over time. Velcro hook tape is notorious for leaving its mark where its been applied to many fabrics.
  8. Buck-Beaver

    Buck-Beaver Well-Known Member

    Have you considered trying some strong magnets? They work well and I've used them for rigging a few times. You can usually pick them up in craft stores or Wal-Mart.

    *Edit: Oops, I guess great minds think alike, eh Jinx? lol *
  9. zoetrope

    zoetrope Well-Known Member

    Wow, that was neat. Suddenly the magnet idea struck. I like that idea a lot, although it wouldn't be quite as versatile as velcro, which would allow placement of eyes, etc. anywhere on the head. Still, I like that idea.

    Time to contemplate the options.
  10. MuppetQuilter

    MuppetQuilter Well-Known Member

    Actually, you can get thin magnet strips (with adhesive to make them easy to apply) that are fairly flexible and you could probably cover most of the foam with them, giving you the stick anywhere effect you were after.

    Velcro won't hold up to heavy play-- it will snag your fabric and over time the velcro hooks will get full of lint and not hook very well. When attaching velcro to fabric (as opposed to the velcro loop tape) you generally have to push pretty snuggly to get it to hold (probably not something a 1.5 year old can manage and might be more challenging than you'd think for a 5 year old-- given that the kids will want the puppet to really be able to move without noses, eyes and hair flying across the room. However, if you want to try, velcro will stick to most fleece (polar, anti-pill) and flannel. Terrycloth works a lot of the time as well. Go to a fabric store, take some velcro and go up and down the aisles and see what holds.
  11. Puppetplanet

    Puppetplanet Well-Known Member

    *Smacks self in forehead* Ugh! Of course! I don't know why I didn't mention that as I've done similar things often. Geez, Thank goodness that MuppetQuilter is working with all her marbles.... because I'm not.

  12. zoetrope

    zoetrope Well-Known Member

    Great advice, and actually I'd been planning on that but figured I could narrow down the search with ideas from you guys. I also appreciate your point about the velcro not being as long lasting a solution as magnets. I'll have to ponder the options some more after my visit to the fabric store, which unfortunately must wait till Tuesday.

    Thanks for all the helpful advice, what a great group of creative thinkers!
  13. MuppetQuilter

    MuppetQuilter Well-Known Member

    It's nice to know someone thinks I have a full set of marbles. ;)

    You might want to get some of the magent strips and take them to the fabric store as well, not sure how strong they are and you could see how thick the fabric can be and still have working magnets-- that might make velcro much more appealing.

    Good luck

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