Our top embroidery tips

Custom embroidery is a great way to take your branded merch up a level. The thing you need to bear in mind with embroidery, above all else, is the texture: it’s physical thread stitched into the garment, and this gives it a tactile quality that’s distinct from the effect you get from screen printing or direct-to-garment printing (DTG).

This means that, with embroidery, you’re adding something physical as well as visual to your merch. It doesn’t have to mean using embroidery instead of screen printing. On a t-shirt, for example, you could use both, the combination of different designs and methods resulting in a distinctive juxtaposition.

Here at ICON, we’re lucky to have worked with a range of innovative and creative clients, who often come to us with inspiring merch ideas that open our eyes to fresh ways of approaching design. Below are some of our tips on how custom embroidery can be used to create something special with your merch.

Our insider tips to make custom embroidery stand out

1. Use it on a tote bag

There are a few places where embroidery is most commonly used. The first of those is hats, like  caps or beanies, where it’s the only method that’s possible. The second is uniforms, where it’s commonly used to stitch logos into hats, polo shirts or jumpers. However, these aren’t the only ways you can use embroidery

One place where it’s less common to find embroidery is on a tote bag, but there’s no reason not to employ it for your custom bag design. Whilst screen printing on a plain canvas bag is the most common approach, embroidery could be part of a more ambitious, eye-catching design. (For more on custom tote bag tips head here.)

2. Stitch a logo into a t-shirt

As we mentioned above, embroidery is typically associated with a logo on a baseball cap or on a polo shirt, but it’s possible to use it on a t-shirt too. There are limitations: the size of the embroidered design needs to be small, as otherwise it will be uncomfortable. But this means it’s ideal for stitching a logo onto a t-shirt, or for a small, playful design to be placed on the left breast or shoulder of your tee. Plus, it’s a great opportunity to experiment with colour, by choosing an embroidered colour that is complementary to your t-shirt fabric.

3. How about an embroidered hoody?

When it comes to being ambitious with your embroidery, a hoody is a good place to do it. Unlike with a t-shirt, the thicker material means that you’re not limited with the size of your embroidered design. This means you can go as big and bold as you like. (For some inspiration, check our post on our favourite embroidered hoodies here.)

4. Use special fabric

As well as a range of the colours you’d expect, at ICON we can also offer things like neon, gold or silver. This doesn’t have to be tacky: used in the right way, it can help you stand out in a way that’s interesting and in tune with your brand.

Want to create your own merch with custom embroidery? ICON Printing offer fast turnaround embroidery on a range of garments, counting a number of clients ranging from such as WeWork to Boiler Room and the Tate. Get a quote in 2 minutes online.