Making It Stick: Craft Adhesives

By: Art Penz

Crafting is a hobby that many people are taking up today, and most are just starting out with out much of an idea of how to do things. I am here to try and save you some grief and help you decide what types of adhesives are for you. The types of available adhesives are either both or a combination of both of both Tape, and Glue. I'm going to tell you the pros and cons of many different types and give you an image of how many types there are, and what may be the best for your project. There are many different types of adhesives that anyone can use.

Liquid Glues

Liquid glues are good for many reasons. They are available in both permanent and re-positionable types. The best things for liquids and cements are for projects involving collage work, decoupage, adhering glitter, and cardboard-to-cardboard applications. Drying time varies by type and application and where you are letting it dry. The drying time can be anytime from instant bond to 24 hours or in some cases, more. When working with liquid glue, you want to be careful not to put too much on there, because you can either get it places you don't want to, or make weak paper and such warp or buckle. I would not recommend using these types of glues on either scrap booking or any archival-type projects.

Pastes and Solid Sticks

Pastes and Solid Sticks are inexpensive, non-toxic, fast-drying and easy to use, glue sticks and pastes are ideal for children's projects. They're easy to use for both handling and application. Cards, and scrap booking projects that are not meant to last an extended period of time. These adhesives tend lose their tackiness over time which will cause them to discolor and curl papers and photos. I would not recommend using these types on anything that you want to for a long time; but the upsides of these still stand.

Spray Adhesives

Spray adhesives are simply glue in aerosol cans. Available in either permanent or re-positionable bonds, these are very nice all-around adhesives for most flat paper projects such as scrap booking, card making, and attaching vellum. They provide a strong, dependable bond, do not buckle or bubble paper, and are quick and easy to apply. The downside is that they are usually not acid-free, so they need to be applied in a well-ventilated area. They can also be quite messy, if you don't have a steady hand. Try not to get it on your hands, and make sure to wash your hands thoroughly after use.

Tape Runners

Tape runners are extremely good scrap booking adhesives, they're both dependable and refillable. Runners are cartridges that you can refill with a nice double sided tape that rolls onto paper in seconds. It is one of the most efficient ways to scrap book and it saves time and a whole lot of hassle. I have found that tape runners are really good for many practical applications, but you always run the risk of messing up and maybe ruining your paper when working with tape. Just remember to be careful and make sure everything is set before laying the lines.

Glue dots, lines, etc

Glue dots are little double sided sticky dots, available in all sorts of shapes and sizes. They can be dots, lines, anything you think of pretty much. They also come in many different colors. They are good for embellishments and outlining. These are usually good for projects involving metal. Glue dots are very nice when you're trying to highlighting specific things on your project.

As you can very well see, there are several different types of adhesives. These are just main categories and there are a lot more than is just said here. Different companies do different things to there products, and they all have variations that require experience with them to manage very effectively. I hope that this general overview of the different categories of adhesives helps you out in your crafting. Good luck, and happy crafting!

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