Category Archives: Embroidery

Embroidery-The Process

(Part 3 of a 4 part series)

Garment decoration is quite popular these days.  The market has a high demand when it comes to beautiful ornamented clothing, totes, hats, blankets and more.  There are a variety of options to add color and décor to garments and embroidery is a particularly prevalent method.

Embroidery Defined

The definition of embroidery is the art of working raised and ornamental designs with a needle into any woven fabric, leather, paper etc…

Businesses often want to add logos to shirts, hats and even backpacks in order to help advertise their brand.  Embroidered products look professional and last longer than items that have been screen printed.

Embroidery Process

The technology associated with embroidery has come a long way.  There are a few basic steps to the process.  The following facts and information will give you an overview from start to finish.

  1. Embroidery is primarily done on machines today.
  2. Custom designs are loaded into a factory’s software.
  3. Then someone presses a frame around the imprint area. The goal here is to keep the surface taut so that it will have a flawless look.
  4. The frame gets locked into position under the machine’s sewing needle.
  5. The area is moved around in a way that it automatically creates the stitched pattern.
  6. The thread color is stitched individually until the logo is complete.
  7. There are no shortages of colors and options to create the right look for your design.
  8. The last step is for someone to clip the stray fibers by hand and then your product is ready.

The process for embroidering garments has changed over time and gotten much easier to do with all the improved technology.  Companies are able to create a custom logo design and have it replicated down to the exact colors.    They are able to have employee uniforms, hats and polo shirts embroidered quite simply and without a huge investment time and money wise.

Embroidery – Artwork (Part 2 of a 4 part series)

Embroidering garments is a great way to brand your promotional items.  Distributors that specialize in promo items are able to process orders quickly and use the artwork their customer provides to make an embroidered custom garment.  The artwork provided to a factory is able to be replicated to create your design.

Types of Artwork

Typically, companies require vector artwork to create items but when it comes to embroidery, they are able to be a bit more flexible.  High quality image files will do the trick, although vector artwork is encouraged.  The good news is that you have flexibility with embroidery and raster artwork such as a JPG will work.

Images work in most cases because they are digitized and then can be programmed into the embroidery machine.  Naturally, the clearer the image the better the finished embroidered product.  If you are concerned that your image may not be as high of a quality, then use vectored artwork so that you’re logo will look clearer.

Digitizing

In order for an embroidery machine to create your garment, you must digitize your artwork by creating a digital file.  This process is called digitizing.  When the digital file is uploaded then the machine is capable of stitching the logo onto the garments.  Digitizing lets the factory know the number of stitches required to recreate the design.

Policies and fees differ between factories when it comes to digitizing.  They usually offer their own artwork services and can digitize your design for you at a reasonable price.

Stitch Count

Factories decide the number of stiches it will take to create your design.  The stitch count is simply how many it will take to complete your logo.  The price of your garment increases as the stitch number gets higher.

The more quality the artwork, the better your embroidered garment will look.  Custom garments are popular, easy to order and embroidery adds a special touch to ensure the colors and logo are an exact replication.  Embroidered garments are customizable for your brand and will set you apart with your promotional items.

Embroidery – Background info

(Part 1 of a 4 part series)

Embroidered garments are probably more prevalent in the market than you’d think.  These days, they are seemingly everywhere.  You’d be surprised to see how many garments you actually have within your household that is already decorated this way.

Embroidery needs are here to stay and are found on about any garment from sports team clothing, employee uniforms or even a one year old’s 1st birthday party T-shirt.

Check out this list of promo items that frequently get embroidered:

  • Hats
  • Polo shirts
  • Towels
  • Tote bags
  • T-shirts
  • Backpacks
  • Blankets
  • Fleece jackets

Embroidery vs. Screen Printing

Often people wonder what the big difference is between embroidered items and screen printing garments.  While embroidery costs a bit more, there is an increase in value that goes along with that higher price.

Screen Printing

Screen printing works for some garments but it won’t last as long.   This option is a great fit if you need a lower price point and you don’t plan to hold onto the item for years to come.

Screen printing will begin to fade and crack over time and with many washes. There is only a thin layer of ink on your garment with this method.

Embroidery

Embroidered items are imprinted and so they last much longer.  The logo or artwork stands out from your item and has more substance to it as a result.

Another benefit of embroidered items is that you typically can have multiple colors and not pay an additional premium.  Businesses and schools find embroidery a great option.  They can showcase their logo’s colors and not have to skimp on what they really want because of a price issue.

Embroidered garments are an excellent and attractive option to display your brand, colors and logo.  This option rather than screen printing is a way to add value to clothing and a variety of other promo items.  Plus, embroidered items last longer, holding up better during both washes and normal wear and tear.

In our next issue, we will discuss the artwork including types of artwork, stitch Count, and digitizing.

Artwork Ownership Basics – Who Really Owns Your Art?

When you have designers create artwork for your company, who owns the design? Are you allowed to use it anyway you like? Do you have to give credit? These are questions that might have answers that will surprise you.

In General, Who Actually Owns the Art?

As a general rule of thumb, you can assume that the person who drew the work actually retains the rights. Even if you were charged a fee for the artwork, the person who put it together actually owns the copyright.

The Copyright Act of 1976 (USC Title 17) was put into place in order to protect artists and their work. Independently contracted artists retain the rights to the work they create for their clients unless otherwise specified.

Exceptions to the Rule

There are some exceptions to the copyright act that was established. If an artist is work for hire, then the one who hired them owns the work.

For example, if a person is hired by a company and they pay an hourly or salary wage to the individual, then their artwork is owned by the one who pays the salary. That would be considered a duty or responsibility of the job.

If you hire a person on staff to draw or create artwork, then you have the rights to the work they create.

Agreements Should Be Made Ahead of Time

It is important that you understand that without an agreement, when you hire an independent contractor or firm, they have the rights to the artwork they put together for you. That is why it is very important to get written contracts ahead of time.

Be sure that you ask the firm or independent contractor to draft an agreement with you stating that you retain ownership of the artwork and that they relinquish the rights. The same goes with print shops.

If you do not own the rights to the artwork that is created for you, then the artist has the ability to charge you for its use. Basically, the fees you have paid to the artist is for their time, not their finished product. Get it in writing!