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What is Laminate Fabric?


Laminate fabric, along with oilcloth, refers to a type of fabric that is coated with plastic in order to make it water resistant. Though oilcloth and laminate are terms that are often used interchangeably, there are differences between the two. For instance, oilcloth is coated on both sides, whereas laminate is only coated on one side, with the reverse being uncoated fabric (usually cotton). This means that oilcloth is stiff while laminate is soft and pliable. Another important distinction is that oilcloth is usually plasticized with heavier and harsher materials containing BPA and other chemicals that are not so good for humans. While this has some advantages, it means that oilcloth should not be used in situations where it will be in close contact with food, the face, and other exposed skin. Oilcloth should NEVER be used where young children are going to be exposed to it, as they have a habit of putting things in their mouths. On the other hand, laminate fabric is usually free of the harsher plastics, making it suitable where oilcloth is not. At Flying Bulldogs, all of our laminates are BPA free and free of other potentially toxic chemicals. Laminate is durable, and in addition to being water resistant, it is resistant to dirt and dust, to stains, bacteria, grease, and even abrasion. Search our selection of laminate fabric.

Other things to know:

  • Most laminate fabric is slightly wider than traditional fabric, giving you more to work with!
  • Laminate is easy to wipe clean with soap and water or a mild surface cleaner. It should not be put in the washing machine or dryer.
  • Laminate should be rolled when in storage to avoid creasing and wrinkling. If ironing is required, it should be done on the uncoated side, on a low setting, and a pressing cloth should be used.
  • Avoid puncturing laminate, as this leaves permanent holes. Instead of using pins to hold the fabric, use clips to avoid holes.
  • Similarly, use a stitch of 3mm or longer to minimize the number of holes left by the needle.
  • Be sure to keep your sewing machine well oiled, especially when the laminated side is facing out. There are also commercial products available to help keep the laminate moving smoothly through the machine.

If you follow these recommendations, working with laminate fabric is easy and rewarding, allowing you to craft beautiful projects for a variety of applications.

What is it used for?

There are so many things that laminate fabric can be used for. It is a versatile fabric limited only by your imagination. Some of the more common uses include:

  1. Table Cloth - Protect your table and provide a pop of color to your room. Plus, it makes clean-up a breeze! Find instructions for a tablecloth here! Directions for a laminate tablecloth!
  2. Rain Jacket / Hat - Because it is water resistant on one side and fabric on the other, laminate is comfortable and utilitarian for use in rain clothing. Even better, it comes in all sorts of fashionable colors and patterns. Rain Jacket Instructions

    Raincoat Instructions

  3. Umbrella - Give your umbrella a style makeover using laminate fabric. It can match your personality and keep you dry underneath.
  4. Bib / Apron / Smock - Messes happen, it’s a fact of life. Protect your clothes from spills and other hazards with laminate bibs, aprons, and smocks. Now your protective clothes can be just as stylish as the clothes they protect!
  5. Lunch / Grocery Bag - Help the environment by ditching disposable paper and plastic bags altogether in favor of reusable ones to store your lunch or groceries. Perfect for work and school.
  6. Changing Mats - If you have a young child, you never know when, or where it will be changing time. Always be prepared with your personalized laminate changing mats.
  7. Placemats - If you want to protect your table and tie the dining room together, but you don’t want to use a full tablecloth, then placemats are the answer. They’re the best of both worlds. Learn to make laminate placemats here!

  8. Beach / Pool Tote - Store all of your beach and pool accessories in a laminate bag to keep them together and safe from all that sand and water. Laminate beach bag instructions!

  9. Phone pouch - Everyone knows that phones and water don’t mix, so protect your phone from water damage by making a laminate phone pouch. Take it with you in the rain, or anywhere else there are water hazards.
  10. Notebook / Textbook Cover - Protect your or your child’s expensive books from all sorts of dangers with a laminate cover. Plus, it will be more personalized than a traditional paper covering. Instructions for a laminate book cover!

  11. Outdoor Furniture Cushions - Nobody likes sitting down outside and immediately getting wet. With a laminate cushion, they won’t get waterlogged, so neither will you.
  12. Grill / Bicycle Cover - Protect your possessions from rain and other environmental hazards with a laminate cover.
  13. Car Mats - Spruce up your car’s interior while also keeping it clean and protected with custom car mats. They’re a great addition to any vehicle.
  14. Pet Bowl Mat - Pets aren’t known for being the neatest when they eat and drink from their bowls. Keep the mess off your floors by putting a laminate mat underneath. Instructions for a dog bowl mat!Instructions for a pet bowl mat!
  15. Coasters - Keep rings off of your tables by using coasters. Pick a design to match your personality or your decor.
  16. Pencil Cases - Keep school or art supplies together inside of a laminate pencil case. Coaster Instructions

    Coaster Instructions

  17. Waterproof Backpack - Keep your contents safe from rain with a custom laminate backpack. And with so many prints to choose from, you’ll stand out anywhere. You never have to settle for expensive, generic, store-bought backpacks again. It’s a win-win situation!

There are so many more great uses for laminate fabric just waiting to be discovered, so go check out all of our designs. They’re priced at a discount for a limited time only. If you have any questions or would like to share your laminate fabric ideas, we love to hear from you. Email us at creativemerchandise@flyingbulldogs.com

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