Can You Laminate Fabric In a Laminator Machine?

Sewing is such an interesting and enjoyable practice for both professionals and hobbyists. When talking about sewing practice, lamination might be the last thing that pops up in your mind but it is a very active process in sewing. Numerous sewing projects needed laminated fabrics to produce an excellent sewing result. 

Laminated fabrics are constructed by merging multiple layers of fabrics. Examples of laminate fabrics include vinyl, oilcloths, chalkboard fabrics, and a variety of faux leathers. These fabrics can be used in making tough and sturdy projects such as raincoats and other messy projects including spill-proof table cloths, chair covers, shopping bags, and electronic pouches. Projects that are made with a laminate fabric can be easily cleaned and don’t require constant laundry. 

These particular fabrics are quite expensive when purchased so many sewers prefer to make their laminated fabric since it can be easily done at home. The homemade laminated fabric process is what creates curiosity in many professionals and hobbyists if it is possible to laminate your fabric in a laminator. 

Can You Laminate Fabric In a Laminator Machine?

To put an end to that curiosity once and for all, yeah it is possible, but you have to take note that few fabrics can go through this process while other fabrics cannot be laminated using the laminator machine. Another letdown that is worth considering is that once you laminate a fabric using the laminator machine, such fabric cannot be seen afterwards. 

Since you might want to know how a laminator machine can be used to make a laminate fabric, we will be discussing more on this in the article. Read along and learn how to make a laminate fabric using the laminator machine. 

What is Fabric Lamination?

Fabric lamination is a creative procedure through which two or more pieces of fabric get bonded together. Using the laminator machine, these pieces of fabric get sealed together with an adhesive. The sealed fabric goes through a heating process to appropriately melt the adhesive which makes sure it adheres to the fabric. 

This process can be carried out using different methods and one of them is through the laminator machine. Another preferred method is by making use of the iron to make sure the adhesive gets melted after which it gets clamped to ensure it holds in place. 

A laminated fabric becomes durable, flexible, and water-resistant. The lamination process protects your fabric from fraying or falling apart and such fabric is also safe from stain and tear.

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How To Laminate Fabric Using a Laminator?

The most important needed tool is the laminator itself, special laminating sheets will also be needed. These sheets are equipped with a distinguished adhesive and release agent. When the needed items are available, you can proceed by laying your fabric perfectly on top of the laminating sheet. 

When this has been done, you should slide your fabric into the laminator machine. It is important to make sure that the fabric is precisely positioned on the sheet to prevent the laminator machine from getting jammed. 

In the absence of a laminator machine, you can make use of your household iron to laminate fabrics. With this method, the iron has to be firmly pressed on the fabric to ensure the whole layer becomes saturated. When firmly pressed, the fabric will become stuck to the laminating sheet due to the heat and moisture of the iron. The fabric can be carefully removed when it becomes cool and you’ll have a brand new laminate fabric. 

When using a laminator machine, you can purchase a pre-cut laminating sheet or create one by yourself. To do this, you have to wrap a piece of fabric in plastic wrap and insert it into a laminator machine. Through lamination, you can easily create durable and water-resistant sewing projects. With this process, you can also create decorative effects for your project. 

Can Laminated Fabric Be Sewn Together?

While it may be a very difficult thing to do, laminated fabrics can be sewn together. All you have to do is to make use of a pre-shrunk fabric to sew together your laminated fabric. Wondering how to pre-shrink your fabric? 

The fabric should firstly be washed using hot water and detergent. After getting washed, the fabric should be perfectly laid preferably on a flat surface, and then sprayed using sufficient water. The fabric can then be rolled up firmly and should be left to seat for twelve to twenty-four hours. After sitting for the proposed duration, the fabric can then be gently stretched. Once all these processes have been completed, the fabric can then be folded before getting laminated. 

When sewing a laminated fabric, many factors should be put into consideration before proceeding. This type of fabric cannot be sewn like a regular one. Things you have to take note of include:

I. Metal Pieces

When sewing a vinyl, you cant make use of a metal surface as it gets attached to the fabric which obstructs it from moving properly through the machine. In a situation like this, you can easily switch your machine presser foot and replace it with a Teflon or plastic foot.

In the absence of a Teflon or plastic foot, you can strategically tape the metal areas of your sewing machine making use of the matte or painter’s tape. 

II. Stitch Length and Needle Size 

It is advisable to adjust your stitch length and needle size when sewing on laminated fabrics. A large needle will also ensure an easy fabric piercing. You have to be cautious when pining your fabric as pins might produce a visible hole in your fabric.

When working on vinyl, you might want to make the stitch length long to prevent your project from getting messy. 

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What Is a Laminated Fabric Used For?

The laminated fabrics perform various purposes, they are waterproof, highly durable, and tear-resistant. They can also be used for aesthetic functions, other laminated fabric applications include.

  • Shoe and clothing linings
  • Gloves
  • Bags
  • Safety vests
  • Backpacks
  • Airbags
  • Carpeting
  • Home furnishings
  • Truck covers
  • Irrigation materials
  • Pond liners
  • Shade materials
  • Rainwear

How Durable Is a Laminated Fabric?

Although these fabrics are mostly lightweight, laminated fabrics are highly durable thanks to their immense tensile strength.

Its combination of durability and lightweight makes it perfect for cloth construction and other products that need to be folded and bent constantly. 

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While it might sound impossible the first time you heard about it. It is entirely possible to laminate your fabric using the laminator machine. It is a process that attached multiple layers of fabrics and ensures they are perfectly bounded to become one. This process provides insulation and additional strength to your fabric which can then be used for a large variety of projects. 

The fabric lamination process is easy and can be carried out even by beginner sewers and hobbyists. When using the laminator machine or the household iron, all you have to do is follow the procedure one step at a time and make use of simple patterns which will make your creative process much easier and you’ll be making a waterproof laminated fabric in no time.