Friday, February 15, 2019

What’s the difference between direct embroidery and a patch?

There are a number of ways to apply an embroidered logo to a shirt or some other item.  Two of the most common are direct embroidery and embroidered patches.  There is a difference between the two.  Understanding that difference can be confusing for people because patches are generally embroidered and many people refer to direct embroidery as a patch.

The key difference is really in the way the image is applied to the shirt.

Direct Embroidery
Direct embroidery is a process of applying an embroidered logo directly to a polo shirt, cap, bag or other item. With direct embroidery, the item to be embroidered is placed in a hoop and put into an embroidery machine.

Then the logo is embroidered directly onto a shirt. Or it may be more accurate to say the logo is embroidered to become a part of the shirt. This happens because the embroidery is woven directly into the fabric.

Patches are still embroidered images, but they are different. Patches are embroidered onto a substrate of material often a number at a time-not individually like direct embroidery. Patches then lay on top of the fabric and are either ironed on or sewn on.

The most common application for a patch is on the sleeve of public safety personal like police officers, paramedics and fire fighters.

Embroidered Patch
One of the big advantages/differences of patches is that they can generally be removed from one shirt and placed on another shirt. With direct embroidery, it is very difficult and time consuming to pull out or remove the embroidered logo of a shirt without damaging it.

Another difference is the flexibility to embroider more detail. Because the substrate of a patch is more stable than the material of shirt, it offers the embroiderer the flexibility to embroider smaller details and text on the image than direct embroidery.

One of the disadvantages of a patch however is they can be heavy when placed on a shirt and it some cases it feels like you might be wearing a bullet proof shield.

A patch is also has a perceived lower value than direct embroidery. Most people would not choose to wear a patch on a nice golf shirt. Patches are best used for uniform situations like law enforcement or the military vs. branding situations like the promotion of your company.
Thursday, February 7, 2019

What’s the difference between sleeve types on a polo shirt?

It’s not the kind of question one asks every day.  But as fashion trends come and go, the finish on the sleeve of a polo shirt has really brought some attention to those seeking custom logo embroidered apparel.

There are basically two ways to finish a short sleeve on a golf shirt.  For years, a very popular way to finish the has been with a band.

k420Let’s start with a clarification.  This is a picture of a banded sleeve.  You can see a small band of material is attached at the end of the sleeve that finishes off the sleeve.

The banded sleeve has been around for decades.  It has been the most popular style for finishing off a polo shirt.

The advantage of a banded sleeve is that is finishes off the sleeve.  It creates a uniform look around the arm.

Recently, customers have been asking for short sleeve golf shirts that are finished with a simple hem on the sleeve.

k800In this picture you can see how a hemmed sleeve it different.  In this case, the shirt maker extended the length of the sleeve, folded that extra material under the sleeve and finished it off with a sewn hem.

The hemmed sleeve is less constrictive, creates a more open look.  As hemmed sleeves first became available, they were mostly found on higher quality golf shirts.  But shirt makers are now introducing them on golf shirts of all price points because buyers have requested it.

The difference in these sleeve styles really comes down to personal preference.  Is there any real difference in performance? No.  It is more about the look you like and the comfort of the shirt.