Can You Use Tacky Glue on Fabric? How to Use it Guide

When talking about tacky glue, the key feature that comes to mind is its versatility. Crafters like it because it can do many things that even I don’t think. You can use this on almost all surfaces including paper, plastic, and metal. But what about the fabric surface, can you use tacky glue on fabric?

Can You Use Tacky Glue on Fabric

Yes, you can use tacky glue on the fabric! Tacky glue is of course suitable for fabric surfaces. It contains fast-drying and effective elements to hold small items on fabric. However, it will not work equally on all types of fabric. The glue contains water-soluble ingredients. So, it is an ideal choice for fabric that doesn’t require frequent washing.

If you’re an enthusiastic crafter and want to do something eye-catchy on your fabric, you may need tacky glue. But before using this glue, you will need to know some more things. Let’s move forward.

What is Tacky Glue?

Tacky glue is one of the best thick and non-toxic adhesive bonding agents. It’s known as a PVA Glue (Polyvinyl Acetate Glue). It firmly holds the crafts’ project items or repair items. Also, it has a fast-drying speed because of its thickness. Both properties make it more popular to users.

What is Tacky Glue

Many users name it universal glue. Because it works perfectly with many things. It works well with all papers, fabric, glass, metal, ceramics, wood, and most plastics. But using it can cause some items to discolor.

As I mentioned earlier, it is polyvinyl acetate glue which is known as a rubbery synthetic polymer. Most Manufacture uses it in glue-making. All products made using this ingredient is water soluble.

Since this ingredient is present in glue, it is soluble in water as well. That means it may dissolve on contact of water. Simply put, if the product is wet, it can be cleaned using soap and water. But if the glue dries thoroughly, it may be necessary to use chemical products such as acetone or glue remover to remove it.

There are several versions of tacky glues are available in the market. You can purchase any as per your preference.

What is Tacky Glue Used for?

Do you love working on cool craft projects? If the answer is yes, then you surely know that good-quality glue is an incredibly useful element for the craft. Tacky glue is excellent for gluing craft items. It is definitely a great choice for your projects. Not only in crafting but also useful for minor repairs.

What is Tacky Glue Used for

Tacky glue is most often used on all papers and some plastic items. Apart from this, it’s useable on fabric, ceramics, glass, metal, and wood. Note that it can peel off glass, metal, and plastic after drying. It may also discolor some items.

As mentioned earlier, tacky glue is not limited to gluing, you can do more fun experiments with it. You can customize your mirror, handbags, jewelry, tiara, shoes, masks, etc. with plastic beads, gems, and sequins using tacky glue.

It’s also applicable for photos and scrapbooks. Though it is not completely pH neutral, it does not affect the pH balance of photos or scrapbooks.

You may be wondering; can I use this on fabric as well? Yes, you can. But it may not be the best choice for fabric. This is because it adheres well to the fabric but will not last against water due to its water solubility properties. So, you should consider applying it to non-washable fabric projects that won’t come in contact with water.

Due to its thick formula, it’s ideal for small, odd stuff such as buttons, shells, etc. The formula is known as an instant tack which is like super grabbing power. It is a super effective form to hold items better in place while the glue dries without the risk of running out.

All you need to do is apply this all-purpose crafting glue to the back of the button or shell and place it in place on your project item. Let them dry thoroughly to see the amazing outcome. Tacky glue is non-toxic. It is safe for crafters of all ages whether professional or non-professional.

Does Tacky Glue Work on Fabric?

Tacky glue can be used on almost all materials. If you’re thinking of using it on fabric, I’d say you can. But before that, some aspects should be considered.

Does Tacky Glue Work on Fabric

Since fabric is a type of element produced to make things such as clothing, shoes, bag, baskets, bed sheets, curtains, towels, etc. So, they may need to be washed. But the main problem is that, when you expose the fabric to water, it will gradually break down the adhesive layer of the glue. That is because it is soluble in water.

Another thing that can happen is that after using tacky glue on fabric and washing it repeatedly, the glue will gradually harden and lose its bonding power. So, use tacky glue on fabric that doesn’t require washing.

Now let’s talk about the working procedure of this glue with a thin or delicate fabric. When using the glue on this type of fabric, wait a minimum of five minutes before attaching it to the project. Otherwise, it may cause glue seepage. Wait patiently for another five minutes before firmly pressing it for better results.

Tacky glue is a super-fast drying agent. It sets and dries 50% faster than other crafting glues. All you need to remember is that it’s not applicable to many washed or worn fabrics. Just use it for fabric used for art projects.

Can You Use Tacky Glue on Fabric?

Tacky glue is one of the popular adhesive agents to most crafters for its incredibly versatile qualities. It works on most craft surfaces such as paper, glass, plastic, ceramics, and metal. But can it be used on fabric like other materials? Well, here is a brief idea to make you clear.

Tacky glue also works on fabric. It holds tiny objects like plastic pearls, sequins, and buttons on the fabric and also helps the fabric adhere to other surfaces.

Can Tacky Glue Work be used Fabric

On the other side, since it is water-soluble, its adhesive bonds begin to break as soon as it comes in contact with water. Therefore, tacky glue is not suitable for materials that require washing.

There is no doubt that tacky glue sticks to the fabric and dries properly, but only as long as the item is not cleaned in water. This glue can’t withstand water. So, using tacky glue on washable fabric is not a wise decision at all.
In this case, I would suggest you use water-resistant fabric glue instead of tacky glue which is specially formulated for fabric.

Aleene’s Clear Gel Tacky Glue Review

Do you want an adhesive that won’t leave a sticky residue on your project after use? Then you should check out this Aleene’s tacky glue. It is one of the best versatile glues that work efficiently on most craft projects, DIYs, and household repairs. It can adhere well to a wide variety of objects such as fabric, construction paper, rhinestones, buttons, sequins, glitter, and more.

Aleene’s Clear Gel Tacky Glue Review

Check Price on Amazon

Thanks to the manufacturer for not putting any holes in the nozzle of tacky glue. You can perforate the nozzle as per your requirements. As a result, there will be no risk of your project getting too much or too little glue. You can apply this glue as a thin, medium, or thick as per your needs.

This all-purpose formula dries crystal clear just like its name and after drying, it stays nice and shiny. You will surely like how your project work comes out. Additionally, this glue is affordable. I recommend this to crafters and especially if you are sensitive to odors. This is because it doesn’t have much odor compared to other glues.


  • Usable for versatile projects and durable.
  • Non-toxic and comes with a low odor.
  • Hold materials super strongly on fabric.


  • Can take a little bit longer to dry.

How to Use Tacky Glue on Fabric?

Tacky glue must not be used on washable fabric. It’s nothing but a waste of time and effort. This glue plays a vital role on non-washable fabric to hold the objects like plastic pearls, beads, sequins, rhinestones, glitter laces, and other adornments.

How to Use Tacky Glue on Fabric

Before I talk about tacky glue using techniques on fabric, let’s first learn a little about how to open the glue packet. Hopefully knowing this will make working on your project easier.

  • Remove the cap from the tacky glue tube.
  • You’ll notice that you need to cut the nozzle to create a hole. Before cutting, think about the project you want to create and the flow of glue that you need to complete your task. Use scissors to cut the nozzle.
  • If you cut the nozzle towards the tip, this will help you to get less flow and allow you to create thinner lines. If you want more glue to flow for your project, cut further down the nozzle.

Now let’s know the procedures for using tacky glue on the fabric.

  • Prepare tacky glue for use on fabric as described above, and then spread the glue exactly on the material as needed. Make sure you don’t have an excess amount.
  • If you apply the glue on lightweight fabric, before attaching the object to the fabric, wait 5 minutes to set it after spreading the glue.
  • Wait an additional 5 minutes before gently pressing it into place.
  • Let it dry properly.

Next Read: How to use hot glue on fabric

How Long Does Tacky Glue Take to Dry on Fabric?

The drying time of tacky glue depends on some factors like the structure of the glue, the amount of glue used, temperature, and humidity. Generally, applying the glue thinly to your project will allow drying it quickly, whereas thicker coating will take longer to dry. Also, if the climate is sufficiently warm and dry, the glue will dry more quickly.

How Long Does Tacky Glue Take to Dry on Fabric

It’s normal for different types of glues to have different drying times. Original tacky glue takes about an hour to dry. But the drying power of Quick Dry tacky glue is super-faster than other similar products. According to its special properties, its drying speed is 50% higher than other glues. Where original tacky glue takes 1 hour to dry, Quick Dry glue dries entirely in just about 35 minutes.

Sometimes waiting approximately 35 minutes to an hour can be frustrating. If so, you can speed up the process slightly by applying some methods. You can use a heater, or hairdryer for quick drying.

Remember, just because the glue is set up nicely on the fabric doesn’t mean it’s completely dry. So, it’s best to wait until the recommended time of tacky glue to get the best result.

Is Tacky Glue Permanent on Fabric?

Tacky glue acts differently depending on a few conditions. When using it on fabric, sometimes it can stay for a longer time. But in general, it stays a maximum of 2 years if the fabric item is used regularly.

Is Tacky Glue Permanent on Fabric

No doubt, we don’t use all of our fabric products in the same way. Some of them need to be washed regularly and some of them require very few washings. Even some products don’t need any washing at all.

As tacky glue has water-soluble ingredients, it can be damaged and washed away if the fabric needs to be cleaned in water frequently. Though tacky glue is durable and creates a stronger bond, it doesn’t act as a permeant adhesive. However, proper care can increase its lifespan on the fabric.

Read Next: Easy ways to remove hot glue from clothing

Final Words

Tacky glue is a vital element that can speed up your crafting projects and make things better. It’s non-toxic, pH and odor-free, and works on a wide variety of materials. There are so many DIY projects that you can complete with this premium-quality adhesive. You can even apply it to household items for minor repairs.

This glue is also excellent to turn a simple fabric into an amazing craft. Avoid frequently washing your fabric items after using tacky glue. Make sure to follow other precautions to get the expected result. So, why is the delay? Now take the glue bottle and let your creativity flow with every drop of glue.

Hi, I'm Robert Jameson. I'm a textile engineer. As a textile engineer, I design & create fabric. When I'm not busy with my family members, I research, write, and edit content for Fabric Fits.

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