GlitterFlex adds a pop of sparkling color that is unparalleled in machine embroidered applique. These tips help you create beautiful HTV embroidery!
As a heat transfer vinyl, GlitterFlex is fused to the base fabric, much like an applique piece backed with fusible webbing (only better). Several things to keep in mind:
Choosing an Iron
I use a small iron, Hanger 9. I found it on Amazon and it runs around 20 dollars. I just happen to like this one because it works quite well inside my embroidery hoop.
I'm not real fond of the teensy Clover irons. They're so small it takes forever to get everything fused. I think you get a better fuse when you have a little bit bigger surface to work with. This one also has a Teflon coating on it.
If you have a heat press, set your temperature at about 330 to 335 degrees and fuse for 17 to 20 seconds. That is the approximate cotton setting on most home irons but every iron is a little bit different.
To test, get yourself a little piece of cotton fabric and a scrap of GlitterFlex. I set my Hangar 9 iron between three and a half and four. Use a thin pressing cloth if desired. Press in place for 17 to 20 seconds.
Lift the press cloth, let it cool, and make sure the edges are fused. If edges are not completely fused or you can lift them from the base fabric, bump up the heat or press a little bit longer until you find the right combination that works.
Use Contrasting Thread
I like to use a higher contrast thread with my placement stitch as well as my tack down stitch. With GlitterFlex, there's so much sparkle that if you use a thread that is the same exact color, you've got all this glitter going on and it's hard to see the thread. That makes it kind of hard to trim if you can't see what line you're trying to follow.
Use a Pressing Cloth (Or Not)
A scrap of cotton fabric works really well as a pressing cloth. Thin Tefflon pressing sheets also work but the thicker sheets don’t allow as much heat to get through.
I will admit that I use a good quality cotton fabric, so it doesn't scorch easily, and I didn't have any problems not using a pressing sheet with both the Hangar 9 iron and a standard iron. Again, test to see which gives you the best results!
Press, Don’t Iron
Make sure to press, don’t iron. Ironing is that sliding back and forth motion. When I'm fusing, I just press straight up and down. That way, I'm not scooching the GlitterFlex from side to side. You can tell that you've got a good fuse when it's nice and taut against the fabric.
The thing I like about not using a pressing sheet is I can see exactly where I have pressed and where I haven't. Where I have not pressed yet, the GlitterFlex is still kind of raised up away from my fabric. It's a little bit puffy. I can see exactly where my last section was and can move on to the next section.
Make sure you don’t use steam when fusing. It can create bubbles and interfere with the fusing process.
See the entire GlitterFlex Tips and Tricks video here.
May your day be blessed with perfect stitches and GlitterFlex!!
Bonnie Welsh - September 22, 2019
Sharon—I suppose it could IF you fused it to fabric prior to making the shoe. However, if you want something stiffer, you might want to use marine vinyl. =)
Sharon Mahaffey - September 22, 2019
Can this be used to make doll shoes?
Bonnie Welsh - September 16, 2019
Robin—Thank you for your kind words! You’ve made my day! =)
ROBIN L FARLEY - September 16, 2019
Thank you for the tips! I love your Glitterflex! When applied correctly it stays put! And of course your most adorable buddies are so awesome when I use your glitterflex oppose to other brands!
Bonnie Welsh - September 12, 2019
Diane—I normally buy from quilt shops. Any quilt shop I’ve purchased from has carried good quality. There are many brands that are of a good quality cotton. You can also tell by the feel or hand. Does it feel tightly woven and smooth or loosely woven and scratchy? =)
Diane - September 12, 2019
? you mention that you use a good quality cotton fabric, so it doesn’t scorch easily. Please share with us so we have the same results as you what type of cotton fabric, brand name and where do you purchase it from.
Bonnie Welsh - September 09, 2019
Ann—I sell over 60 colors right here on this website. It is a type of heat transfer vinyl that you can use with machine applique or all by itself without using embroidery at all. If you scroll back up to the top and then look at the left hand column, you’ll see various GlitterFlex Bundles or single sheets available.
Bonnie Welsh - September 09, 2019
You’re welcome Nancy!
Ann Montgomery - September 09, 2019
Hi what is glitter flex sounds interesting where can you buy it thanks
Nancy Smith - September 09, 2019