Let’s Talk Decorations!!

Let’s Talk Decorations!!

Decoration puts the custom in the custom team sports apparel industry.  Decoration takes a variety of forms depending on the composition, size and location of your logo, and the type of garment or accessory being customized.  Sports teams, businesses and organizations provide a seemingly endless supply of customers looking for gear with their logos emblazoned on it. Wave One Sports, the leader in custom team sports apparel since 1988, offers a huge selection of sports apparel including game uniforms, practice gear, and accessories that can be custom decorated with team logos, team mascots and business logos.  Nike, Under Armour, Adidas, New Balance, Champion and Alleson Athletic are some of the more well know manufacturers offered by Wave One.  Wave One provides equally popular generic brands that may not be household names but feature quality options and competitive pricing.

The two most popular and common forms of apparel decoration are screen printing and embroidery.  Screen printing involves the transfer of ink through a polyester screen to a garment or other item placed beneath the screen using a squeegee to force the ink through the screen.   The screen has portions blocked representing the design or lettering allowing only the ink in the shape of the design to pass through, leaving the image on the item. Screen printing can be one color or multiple colors and works well for designs and logos of all shapes and sizes.  Screen printing is typically more cost effective than embroidery, especially for larger designs like full fronts and large back logos.

Embroidery is also a very popular process for garment and decoration. Embroidery works well for designs, logos and lettering of all shapes and sizes, but is most cost effective for left or right chest size logos.  Embroidery designs are sewn directly on the apparel using a computerized embroidery machine. Today’s modern commercial embroidery machines are sewing machines controlled by sophisticated embroidery software.  Commercial embroidery machines may have one sewing head or multiple heads each head operating multiple needles, each needle threaded with a different color thread. This setup allows the efficient application of simple and complex logos of one to 16 colors.  High speed operation, automatic thread trimming and thread break detection have greatly improved the quality and affordability of custom embroidered logo application. Even so, embroidery requires significantly more time than screen printing logos of similar size and design which makes embroidery more expensive.

Compared to two-dimensional screen printed logos, embroidered logos are three dimensional, actually raised above the surface of the garment.  This texture gives embroidery a “richer” look and feel and works especially well on smaller logos applied to the chests of shirts and jackets.  Large embroidered logos require thicker, more substantial material and work best heavier jacket backs.

Screen printing allows finer detail than embroidery.  The screen printing process is faster and more cost effective, especially for larger quantities.  Screen printing works especially well on lighter weight apparel, like tee shirts. Embroidered logos are more appropriate for smaller logos on heavier fabrics like polo shirts and jackets when customers want a richer, more classic look.  Both decoration techniques are in great demand and each is widely used by Wave One Sports to satisfy our customer’s custom team sports apparel needs.