5

I know that the following word pairs exist:

button – unbutton

tie – untie

Can we use an analogous process with the verb "velcro"?

  • 1
    You won't find it in a dictionary (other than Urban Dictionary) but I'm pretty sure that anyone who read it would know what you mean. – Catija Apr 1 '15 at 19:51
  • Velcro isn't a verb though. Something can be fastened or unfastened with velcro, but "velcroed" to me would mean attaching velcro to a object, not fastening something together with velcro. – ColleenV parted ways Apr 1 '15 at 20:00
  • @ColleenV I would say something like, "Let me velcro my sandals and we can go." – Catija Apr 1 '15 at 20:16
  • @Catija Are you sure you wouldn't be more likely to say "fasten my sandals" or "put on my sandals"? I can imagine folks using it as a verb, but I have never actually heard it even though I lived through the '80s ;). A quick survey at the coffee pot resulted in most folks thinking it was OK to use Velcro as a verb (AmE), but they weren't comfortable using unvelcro. It was a "one way" verb as they described it, sort of like "I stuck the note to the wall, then changed my mind and took it down." (not unstuck it). – ColleenV parted ways Apr 1 '15 at 20:44
  • @ColleenV I would use it in the same sense that I would use "Let me tie my shoes"... if they were on already but not fastened... and, yes, I would say "velcro". – Catija Apr 1 '15 at 20:46
10

“Velcro” as a verb is already a verbing and a genericization, which, however popular, doesn’t have quite the currency or flexibility of words in use for centuries. As Catija says, “unvelcro” can easily be understood, but it’s more comfortable for me to keep “velcro” as a noun and say things like this:

I undid the velcro on my sneakers before kicking them across the room.

He ripped open the velcro on his wallet and everyone in the library looked at him.

  • 2
    What about "unstrapped"? – clcto Apr 1 '15 at 21:31
  • Thank you very much for all your answers and comments!!! – Ann Apr 15 '15 at 9:15
  • @Ann You’re welcome! Just so you know, this site has a built-in mechanism for gratitude whereby you can thank people by upvoting (clicking triangle above number next to question) and/or accepting (clicking check mark). – Tyler James Young Apr 15 '15 at 14:54
  • OK, I'll keep that in mind! – Ann Apr 18 '15 at 19:48

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