How to decide – embroidered vs printed branding on company workwear



In the world of business – whether that’s an office environment, busy coffee shop setting or construction site – you never get a second chance to create a strong first impression. That’s why it’s imperative to provide your employees with company workwear that catches the eye and communicates an aura of assurance and professionalism, all the while advertising your company name and logo for all to see.

When it comes to incorporating those all-important identifier details into the uniform, there are generally two avenues open to you: embroidery or printing. Both techniques have their merits and are suitable for specific circumstances, which is why we at Garment Printing employ both, depending on the job in question. In fact, printing is quite a catch-all term for a number of different techniques, including screen printing, direct-to-garment (DTG) printing, dye sublimation, CAD cut vinyl printing and transfer printing. Again, each of these is suitable for different occasions, so it’s best to weigh up the individual circumstances of your situation before making a decision.

personalised-workwearChoosing Workwear Designs

Here are a few of the factors you may want to consider when deciding between embroidered or printed branding for your company workwear:

  • Aesthetic

While excellent results can be achieved via both methods, the ultimate aesthetic could be slightly different for both. For example, printing via any one of the techniques mentioned above can be a great way to create loud, attention-grabbing patterns full of colour, while embroidered designs are subtler and perhaps classier. Taking the hospitality industry as an example, a printed uniform might be more suitable for a cheap and cheerful fast food place, while embroidered workwear is more fitting for upmarket hotels and boutique restaurants.

  • Durability

What shelf life are you expecting the item of clothing to have? Since they are stitched into the fabric itself, embroidered designs will generally last as long as the garment does. While high-quality, long-lasting results can still be achieved via printing techniques, they will not be quite as hard-wearing as embroidery. Therefore, articles of clothing which are to be used for one-off events (such as charity drive t shirts or company golf outing polo shirts) might be more suited to printed branding, while uniforms designed for longer use could benefit from embroidery.

  • Size

When it comes to the company logo on your employee workwear, size certainly does matter. Generally speaking, embroidery is excellent at creating small, simple designs, but will struggle to replicate the same impressive results when incorporating a logo that is greater than 150mm in either width or length. This is because it can pucker the material, weakening the garment’s overall structural integrity and pulling or stretching the fabric. With that in mind, it’s best to go for printing if you have your heart set on a larger design.

  • Complexity of pattern

As mentioned above, embroidery works excellently well when stitching classic, uncomplicated patterns, such as elegant typography or other simple patterns. Thanks to the sophisticated embroidery techniques used at Garment Printing, we’re also able to incorporate a variety of different coloured threads in the same piece of artwork. However, if your design features lots of intricate details or a colour scheme that’s bold and visually arresting, a printed garment is probably the best way to go.

  • Garment material

Another important consideration is the material onto which you plan to transfer your company logo. Some types of fabric are more suited to one technique than the other; for example, anything waterproof or with a lined interior (such as a winter wear coat) should not be embroidered, as this may compromise the garment’s primary aim of keeping the wearer warm and dry. On the other hand, a refined Oxford shirt or stylish blouse is infinitely more suited to embroidery, since a garish printed design could undermine its chic aesthetic.

  • Cost

Last but most certainly not least, pricing is always a concern in the world of business. Screen printed logos represent the most cost-effective option and are especially recommended for companies with low budgets who don’t need the garments to last the test of time. On the other hand, those on the hunt for an item of company workwear that will endure for years to come may want to consider investing a little extra money in an embroidered design, since it can achieve a more graceful aesthetic and will have a longer lifespan.

Get help from the professionals

Of course, the most important consideration when designing your company workwear is not any one of the above factors, but a combination of them all and how they contribute to the garment’s appearance as a whole. Creating an impression of professionalism is paramount, so you should weigh up the aforementioned aspects and make a judgement based on your individual needs. We understand that coming to a decision can be a difficult and confusing process, which is why we’re happy to lend our years of experience and expertise where they’re needed. For any advice on which technique would suit your situation best, or to obtain a quote for a bulk order, simply fill out our online form or give us a call on 0207 101 9315 and we’ll be happy to help.

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