Often the first thing we get is “which method has a low price or is cheap? The answer depends on the complexity of the logo and the quantity of garments. In general, at Print Haven, embroidery is cheaper for pocket size logos. In addition, average price becomes lower on large quantities. So generally the bigger the order is, the lower the average price. This is so irrespective of the number of colours involved in the design.
Low set-up cost
The set up cost for most embroidery logos, at Print Haven, is a very low flat fee. That is to say it does not vary from one logo design to another. However, set up cost for screen printing is colour dependent. This is so because a new mesh screen is required for each colour used. In addition, screen printing logos on coloured T-shirts require “base print”. This is more like an undercoat. For example, a white print on a black T-shirt requires two screens. As set up cost for embroidery is almost similar to that of a single screen, it is generally cheaper to set-up.
Our exceptions are large logos because they can take tens of thousands of stitches to create. They take a lot more machine time and use more thread so that makes it a lot more expensive. Screen printing large designs and logos is cheaper.
We factor, the cost scenario for large quantities too. The set-up costs for screen printing become incidental and printing costs become inexpensive.
Another thing to keep in mind is whether you anticipate repeat orders for the same garments. We don’t charge any set-ups for repeat embroidery jobs but we do charge reduced set-ups for repeat screen printing jobs because we have to remake the screens.
Suitability and low price
Putting aside low cost, which method will give you the best result? The answer to this question depends on the garments being decorated. For business shirts and polo shirts embroidery is generally the best choice. Embroidery on these items is perceived as more prestigious. Embroidery is generally best for caps and outerwear too. Otherwise screen printing is advisable for polo shirts, for typical tradewear. Usually where large logos and print is required. This is in most cases at the back side of the garment.
For t-shirts and lightweight garments, screen printing is the best choice. Embroidery is often too “heavy” for t-shirts. As you may notice “puckering” around the logo because the stitching creates tension. Screen printing has a “softer handle” than embroidery. As a result it is much better for large logos and designs. Since T-shirts have large decoration area on both front side and back, printing is most suitable.
In conclusion, embroidery is the best choice for business shirts, polo shirts, caps and jackets. While screen printing is the best choice for t-shirts, hoodies and large logos.
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