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Embroidery Clothing Pros & Cons

A guide to the pros and cons of embroidery.

Embroidery is just one of a number of options for decorating clothing and fabrics. In this brief guide we will attempt to look at the pros and cons for choosing embroidery over alternative garment decoration techniques.

Firstly consider what embroidery actually is. Defined in the dictionary as, “The art of decorating fabrics using a needle and thread, or cloth that has been embroidered”. With this definition in mind we will look at how embroidery can both enhance a design or logo as well as distort it.

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So what are the plus points to embroidery?

The thread itself - Because the design uses a thread to draw the detail, it will withstand the rigours of daily wear and constant washing. We often say that an embroidered logo will outlast the garment itself. So you can see embroidery is a very durable way of decorating clothing.

Sustained colour quality - The durability of the thread means that the colour sharpness will also be maintained through the lifetime of the garment wear.

Appearance of quality - Whilst other garment decoration techniques have their merits in terms of the quality of the finished product, in our opinion nothing quite looks as smart and professional as embroidery when done correctly.

Numbers of colours within the design - Other decoration techniques are costly when there are a number of different colours within the logo or design. This is not the case with embroidery where colour numbers have no effect on cost, either in terms of set up or individual garment embroidery.

Suited to certain materials - Heavy materials such as fleece or heavy cotton is specifically suited to embroidery and often not an option for other forms of garment personalisation such as print. This is why embroidered fleeces have become one of our most recommended products.

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So we now know the pluses to using embroidery but what is the downside to this method of garment decoration?

Design size - Embroidery pricing is based on the number of stitches within the design. Therefore the bigger the logo the more expensive it is. As an example if you want your design across the full front or back of a shirt, embroidery is quite often not the most cost effective way of doing this. Also, you will need to consider the weight of the embroidered design on the garment and whether the garment fabric will take the weight without distorting the shape of the clothing item.

Overall cost - Embroidery can be more expensive than alternative personalisation methods. As discussed the cost can be dependent on logo size and the quantity of garments but generally speaking the quality of the finished embroidered product is reflected in the price.

Visual effects and shading - Embroidery is a rigid decoration technique in that the needle and thread can only produce a certain amount of design detail. Machine embroidery techniques have advanced and you would be amazed at what can be achieved but printing can often show colour fading and shade which embroidery is not able to do.

Small detail - Small detail, especially small text is often not easily recognised when embroidered. In order for text to be clear it really needs to be block stitched which then increases the overall size of the text. We recommend text size of no smaller then 5mm, but prefer to embroider text at 8mm if possible.

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So there you have it, the for’s and against for embroidery. Hopefully the above will help you to make your decision in regards to which personalisation technique to go for. Here at JKL we don’t expect our customers to be experts on embroidered clothing. That’s what we are and with over 15 years experience we have the expertise and knowledge to guide you through the process of selecting the most appropriate form of decoration for your personalised clothing order.

You can contact us to get more information in 3 different ways

  • By phone – Our offices are open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5 pm. Our trained staff are on hand to discuss your embroidered clothing requirements
  • By email – email with your enquiry and we will get back to you with more information and a quote if requested.
  • By contact page – Complete one of the contact pages on our website and we will respond with the information you require


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