Make Custom Patches with PicMonkey’s Backyard Cookout and Great Outdoors Overlays

Good news for those of you who still heart the nineties: patches are back, and we at PicMonkey are stoked. Custom patches are inexpensive, expressive ways to tell the world who you are, and we were like, “Uh, that also describes PicMonkey. Score!”

There’s also good news for those of you who heart PicMonkey graphics. Just in time for summer’s last hurrah, we bring you two new graphic sets: Great Outdoors and Backyard Cookout. These graphics are all about getting outside and enjoying nature (or getting outside and enjoying food), with a brightness and joie de vivre that reminds us of vintage patches.

Also, we just got our merit badge in French.

So we decided to combine this trendy pair and offer you some of-the-moment PicMonkey inspo: your very own printable patches, made with our new graphics. Here’s how to use PicMonkey graphics to make custom patches you can put on jackets, hats, tote bags, dresses, and even shoes.

Start designing

Stop one on the fashion train is PicMonkey’s design tool! Open up a blank canvas, then bop along to the Graphics tab. You’ll find the Backyard Cookout and Great Outdoors graphic groups under New.

Next, get designing. At its most basic, this involves a background color, graphic, and line of text—and that’s really all you need! If you’d like some guidance, learn more about creating simple graphics over here.

Pro tip: Start with a graphic that makes you smile. Text and coordinating colors will come from there.Once you have your design, here are a few of our favorite ways to get a cool patch shape:

Shape cutouts. Turn your design into a heart, star, circle, and more with Shape Cutouts. The nice thing about these cutouts is that their angles and size are totally adjustable, so you can find the right fit for your design.

Graphics. Open a graphic (one from the Labels group, for instance) right-click and hit Send to back. Change its size until there’s some nice padding around your central design, and bam! Patchified.

Remember that you’re going to be printing these out, so if you don’t want a patch that’s like, mega gigantor, open your saved design as a graphic on a blank 8 x 10 canvas. Resize to taste.

When you have a look you like, put a ring on it and save.

Saving: the marriage proposal of image editing …?

Pro tip: Ever have those moments when your design is just aboooout perfect, but then the exact right font only occurs to you after you save? Save your designs to Hub and never experience this pain again. Images you save to Hub through can be reopened later, and their text and graphics will be re-editable.

Buy the right paper

The secret to printed patches is fabric paper.

Maybe this should have been the first step, at least for people who don’t have Amazon Prime. Either way, at some point in the space-time continuum, you’re gonna need to go online and order some printable fabric paper. Here on the PicMonkey space station, we went with these babies.

The paper we used prints fine on any setting, as far as we can tell. Just load it into the tray where you’d normally put 8.5 x 11 inch paper and you’ll be ready to roll.

Print, cut out, and enjoy

Now pull up your patch graphics and print away! Once you print them, cut them out and peel the backing off your fabric paper, and you’ll be able to sew or fabric-glue them onto whatever you like.Just one word of advice: to prevent fraying, you may want to treat the edges of your patch with fabric glue. There are a bunch of specialized no-fray options out there, some of which are designed to survive the laundry.

Okay, now you have beauteous custom patches! Can we blow your mind for just a second? You can repeat this exact process with printable sticker paper. Yuh-huh, that’s gospel truth. High-quality DIY patches and stickers are within your grasp. And of course, you can keep things digital and use our new graphics to make delightful graphics. The power is yours!

Get a PicMonkey membership and turn your ingenious image ideas into reality.

Elisa Chavez is a content writer here at PicMonkey, where she hopes to change the world one dinosaur selfie at a time. She is also a nationally ranked slam poet, champion shopper, and doting dog mama.