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When To Use Embroidery Instead Of Screen Printing for Business

There are several factors you want to consider when making a decision about which would be better for your project—embroidery or screen printing. Two of the most important considerations for businesses are branding and cost.

Use Embroidery When Impression Matters

There is no question that embroidery gives the impression that the business represented by the embroidered logo is a business that is around to stay. It also says that the company doesn’t cut corners. It is general knowledge that embroidery is usually more expensive than screen printing. While this isn’t always true, the perception is widely held.
When you are looking at smaller designs, such as a company logo, embroidery is often the best choice. You may even be surprised that the cost is about the same as for screen printing. You get positive brand exposure for at most a minimal increase in cost.

Use Embroidery When Durability Matters

This is especially true if the garment is going to take some wear and tear. Screen printing only holds up so long before the inks begin to fade. Embroidery threads are color-stable so the fresh look of an embroidered image will last much longer. They also hold up better to wear.
This is especially true with embroidery on knit garments and accessories. Because a knit stretches, a logo on a knit cap will never look as good screen-printed as it does embroidered with a stabilizing background. T-shirt and polo shirts likewise hold up better when the logo is embroidered.

Don’t Let Higher Price Make the Decision

The cost of embroidery increases as image sizes increase. This is primarily because embroidery is priced by the number of stitches required to produce the desired design. There are some situations where a large embroidered logo just isn’t worth the additional expense. Yet there are others in which it makes the difference.
For example, a jacket with a large logo embroidered on the back is going to look sharp for many years, while a jacket with a screen printed logo may no longer represent your brand quality within a year.  Unless you expect heavy turnover in employees, the expense of going for the higher-end look can well be worth it.
If you are going to choose to go with screen printing, you should do so because of the benefits screen printing offers.

  • Screen printing is the better option for garments that are worn against the skin. Embroidery always leaves a stiff area in the garment because of the many threads used to create the design. A small stiff area in the upper chest area is tolerated by most people, but a stiff patch across the back could make a garment very uncomfortable.
  • Screen printing makes sense for detailed logos with small print. The very nature of embroidery makes rendering print more difficult. This may require modification of the logo, something some companies aren’t willing to do.
  • Screen printing handles shading more effectively than embroidery. If your logo is very detailed and includes shading, it may not reproduce well in embroidery.
  • Screen printing should be considered for businesses that have high employee turnover, food service for example. The benefits of durability and creating a “good” impression probably aren’t worth the extra expense. At the same time, things like caps which can be reused should be embroidered.

When it comes to choosing whether embroidery or screen printing is the best choice for your business, consider both pricing and your other business needs. By doing so, you can strike the right balance for your business branding efforts.

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