Screen printing and embroidery are the two most common methods of creating custom apparel. However, these two methods are different in terms of their benefits and application. With screen printing, the garment is decorated by reproducing a logo via colored ink which is usually squeezed out through stencils (mesh screens) directly onto the item. Therefore, the logo must be separated into different colors because a screen mesh has to be made for each color in the logo.
On the other hand, embroidery mainly entails reproducing a logo via different color threads which are stitched directly onto the garment. Nowadays, computerized embroidery machines are used because the image has to be digitized. The embroidered logo becomes part of the garment.
Therefore, it is vital to evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of each technique in order to determine which the best option for you. In order to determine the most suitable method, we must consider which technique is cheaper, the technique that gives the best results and also the suitability of the method to various garments.
Embroidery Versus Screen Printing
Now to make a comparison based on few parameters like
The set-up cost for an embroidery production unit is a flat fee because it does not depend on the number of colors in the logo. However, the cost of setting-up screen printing depends on the number of colors you intend to have. Each color in your design or logo requires a new screen. If you intend to have three colors, you must pay for three screens. Moreover, you must apply a base print on the garment before screen printing your design. Therefore, you will need a screen for the base print as well. Therefore, it is generally cheaper to set up an embroidery
Whereas screen printing is often bold and big, embroidery is tasteful and small and therefore it is considered more professional. In most cases, embroidery is sized about 3 to 5 inches. Embroidery is a more substantial decoration because it uses thread to create more of a 3D look and texture. Moreover, it is not susceptible to various harsh conditions such as heat and it actually holds up better.
Although embroidery creates detailed and high quality embellishments, screen printing produces very crisp and sharp logos. Printing can also be done on lightweight garments such as panties and lightweight T-shirts without putting holes in the garment or causing the material to sag.
The quality of the embellishment mainly depends on the garment you want to decorate. Embroidery is the most suitable technique for polo shirts (golf shirts), baseball style caps, jackets, and business shirts because embroidery on such garments is considered more professional and stylish. Embroidery is also a better choice especially when you need to print your design on a fuzzy or thick material such as fleece.
Screen printing is best suited for hoodies and T-shirts mainly because embroidery is bulky for most T-shirts because it often results in unsightly wrinkling or puckering around the embroidered logos. On the other hand, screen printing has a much softer feel than other methods such as embroidery. Therefore, it is easier to print larger logos and designs and this is very suitable for garments such as hoodies and T-shirts because they have a larger area for decoration.
After comparing embroidery versus screen printing, it is clear that embroidery is the best method for decorating your garments along with sewing machines because it has fewer disadvantages as compared to screen printing in terms of cost, quality, and suitability. On the other hand, the advantages of embroidery override those of screen printing.