Screen Printing or Embroidery

Which is right for you?

Now that you have decided on the garment that is appropriate for your organization, event or school. That was hard enough with all the choices available. Next you need to determine which decorating method, screen printing or embroidery, is best. The criteria listed below may help guide you in your decision.


Knowing what you have to spend will be the first consideration when it comes to selecting the appropriate decorating method. Screen printing is a more economical method if you are on a tight budget. Embroidery costs on each garment, the digitizing (or set up fees), are often more than screen printing. Depending on the size and complexity of your design or logo.

Purpose of the Garment

What are you using the garment for? It stands to reason if the item is for a giveaway at an event or an everyday work shirt you furnish for employees, you probably don't want to invest a lot into the logos on the shirt. Thus screen printing would be the best choice. If, however, you are wanting a more professional, polished image for your corporate staff or lead employees then embroidery would be best.

Garment Weight

If the garment you have chosen is light weight, for example a tee shirt or light weight polo, screen printing would be the best method of decorating. For embroidery, the garment needs to be heavy or thick enough to adequately support the stitching. Otherwise the garment will tend to pucker or curl after repeated washings.

In general, screen printing on an item is the most popular choice for value priced items (tee shirts, certain ball caps, lightweight polos) used for events, schools/athletics, and laborers. It is a more economical way to embellish an item. Embroidery is preferred when a more upscale, professional image is desired. Merchandise that is most commonly embroidered includes most polos, ball caps, jackets, and sweatshirts.

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