Embroidery vs Applique

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To Embroider or to Applique

GetBold is the place to go for custom t-shirt printing. But we love adding to the impact of your custom garment design with the use of embroidery and applique. We have found that both are popular techniques for creating unique garments. The decision to choose one or the other may depend on the design itself, or the material it is applied to.

What is Embroidery?

Embroidery is a popular stitching technique. It is a decorative sewing method that uses either thread or yarn. It starts by digitizing a logo before it is applied to the garment using an automated embroidery machine, by a skilled machinist. Or a hand-guided machine is used to apply the design. Our skilled operators make sure that the logo is reproduced as accurately and as detailed as possible.

The Advantage of Embroidery Over Applique

Embroidery creates a richness and vibrancy to the image. It typically represents the artwork more accurately without adding patches of fabric that, although it can be creative, may not appropriate for the integrity of the original design. It also generally reproduces detail well. So, it is used to create a detailed or elegant look. Embroidered garments “pucker” less than applique garments, allowing for lighter materials.

Some Embroidery Product Applications

  • Hats and Caps. Embroidery is the most common way to decorate or represent a message on headwear. It adds dimension and boldness. Many times, it is the first introduction to a company or product.
  • Embroidery is considered to be a great way to represent a professional image of a brand or organization on a shirt. It provides consistency for employees or organization members and is a lasting first impression.
  • Jackets and Coats. Jackets and coats are a durable and repeatable use of embroidered identity. They can be worn every day and are designed for a wide range of uses. Embroidery can be a smaller logo on the front or a larger emblem on the back. The thicker material of jackets and coats holds an embroidered image well.
Embroidery vs Applique

Flex Fit Trucker Mesh #FF6511

  • $10.48 ea
  • 12 colours
  • One size – One size
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Embroidery vs Applique

Private: Stormtech Flat Ironwork Jacket #CWC-2

  • $80.05 ea
  • 2 colours
  • X-Small – 5XL
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Embroidery vs Applique

Gildan Ladies Softstyle Fitted Tee #64000L

  • $5.44 ea
  • 7 colours
  • Small – 2XL
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What is Applique?

Applique is a more traditional approach to the craft of applying a design to a garment. A pre-cut fabric is applied to the t-shirt. An embroidery machine stitches thread around the fabric. Used mostly to add letterforms onto the garment, it is used frequently to create a letterman’s jacket. Although applique garments can “pucker” more often than embroidered garments, it is easier to iron out a wrinkle in an applique garment.

The Advantage of Applique Over Embroidery

If you want to create a bold text look, which many times is referred to as an Americanized look, applique is a great way to go. The design can be personalized by integrating a uniquely patterned material. Also, embroidery costs are directly determined by the number of stitches in the over-all design. The applique process dramatically reduces the stitches by replacing them with fabric. Each design is as unique as the fabric used. And applique designs can be larger and not as weighty on the garment as embroidery.

Some Applique Product Applications

  • Monograms are typically a form of motif that integrates two or more letters, either a company, product or a person’s initials. They can be interwoven or in some way combined in a decorative design. Applique adds boldness and distinction to monograms displayed on garments.
  • Letterman’s Jacket. A letterman’s jacket is that bold, all-American statement. Most letterman’s jackets are made of thick rigid material that holds applique well.
  • Holiday clothing. Applique is a great way to express your unique take on a holiday season. Many fabric patterns add a festive and fun feel to an image adhered to sweaters or sweatshirts.
Embroidery vs Applique

M&O Unisex Pullover Hoodie #3320

  • $16.76 ea
  • 10 colours
  • X-Small – 3XL
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Embroidery vs Applique

Gildan Pocketed Sweatpants #12300

  • $12.75 ea
  • 4 colours
  • Small – 2XL
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Which Do You Choose and Why?

Your choice depends upon your desired effect and its use. You might want a big, fun, or more personal impact that is perfect for applique, or a tight accurate and detailed representation of a graphic or identity through embroidering. Either way, GetBold has the experts to make it happen.