Promotional apparel is any article of clothing imprinted with your logo, or any other kind of art. Examples of promotional apparel include screen printed T-shirts, logo imprinted jackets or polos, embroidered baseball caps, corporate apparel, custom printed safety vests... just about any type of clothing or accessory can be imprinted with your company's logo. Screen printing and embroidery are the two most popular imprint methods for wearables, but there are several other imprint methods available. Here, we'll take a look at some of the different types of imprint methods for
Screen Printing: This is a very popular decoration method. Sometimes called silk screening, this imprinting method is most often used for T-shirts but can be used for other articles of clothing and some accessories, like baseball caps. The term "screen printing" was once interchangeable with the term "silkscreen printing" because the process once used threads of silk as part of the imprinting process. Today, synthetic threads such as polyester are commonly used instead. A woven mesh of this thread is used to create a stencil, and then ink is forced through the mesh onto the article of clothing to create the imprint.
Embroidery: Another popular imprinting method, embroidery can be used on many types of clothing and accessories. Embroidery is the most common imprint method used for (company uniforms or shirts), as well as baseball caps, hats, socks, hoodies, and much more. In order to have your logo embroidered onto an article of clothing, the logo or artwork must first be "digitized." This just means the logo must be converted into a digital code that can be read by the embroidery machine. The piece is then embroidered using corresponding thread colors. Embroidery has been around for ages (the ancient Egyptians used it), but it still remains one of the most common, and one of the most impactful methods of decorating apparel.
Laser Etching: Laser etching is the process of burning your logo into the fabric using a high powered laser. This process is most commonly used on towels and fleece.
Other Methods: While screen and embroidery are by far the most common methods for imprinting apparel, there are other options available. Pewter decoration, rubber, and high frequency and liquid metal are all examples of apparel imprinting methods.
Whatever method you choose, logo imprinted apparel is a great way to keep your company's name in front of many people each day. Once you imprint a shirt with your company's logo, it's not just a shirt anymore- it's a walking billboard.
The author is a and apparel specialist.