Embroidery or Printing?

When you are considering your next garment branding project, be it for your business or marketing promotion, you likely have heard (or will do) the various methods your garments can be made with. Embroidery is generally used in trade as a general term for 4 main technologies used to transfer your designs on your uniforms. The other 3 are Screen PrintingDigital Heat Seal Transfer and Direct To Garment Printing also abbreviated as D2G Printing.

All 4 technologies vary with respect to the finish, price, and durability, and some like embroidery lower in costs as the quantity rises. A wrong choice between the 4 can lead to a poor finish, overly expensive price or unsatisfactory level of durability for the application of the garment.


Embroidery is the process whereby a design or logo can actually be stitched onto a range of garments. This method of decoration is immediately eye-catching, colourful and multi-dimensional. Embroidery is very durable, often outlasting the garment itself! Smaller, simpler designs with multiple colours are ideal for embroidery. Embroidery is a preferred option for smaller sized designs, multiple colours, or smaller orders. But embroidery is still an option in all cases except where the logo is excessively detailed.

Embroidery price is based on the amount of stitches in the art work. So, in essence, the bigger the artwork is, the more expensive it will be as an embroidery. Embroidery is VERY competitively priced compared to other decoration methods at small quantities. But when it comes to large back designs for example,
we usually recommend

Screen Printing

Our state of the art machinery allows us to offer a range of printing alternatives from simpler, one colour, standard prints right through to intricate full colour printing.  We use only the safest eco-friendly printing ink on the market: Plastisol Inks.

The results, while not as visually appealing as embroidery, are still both very pleasing and visually effective. Direct Uniforms are determined to provide results that surpass expectation. We focus on quality assurance because we believe if it’s worth doing, then it’s worth doing right. Our printed fabrics are always visually distinctive. We are proud of the results we produce for you.

If you are not quite certain of what you want, we can even assist you with designs for film separations that lead to the final high quality screen print on your items.

Digital Heat Seal Transfers

Digital Heat Seal Transfers are images embedded into the actual fabric through heat and pressure. The process permits high resolution, finely detailed, photographic images or clear, distinctive lettering to produce very high quality results. Many of our customers opt for heat seal transfers over screen printing because it is particularly suited to smaller runs.

Digital Heat Seal Transfers are also ideal for individual numbers and names on the back of sports jerseys. And for end of year graduation garments that need to incorporate individual nicknames.

Direct to Garment Printing

Direct To Garment (DTG) printing is very much what it sounds like. The DTG Printer reproduces the artwork directly onto the garment. Like a standard printer does on paper.

DTG printing can produce any quality artwork up to and including photographs. It is also a relatively durable method of printing, but not so much as Screen Printing or Embroidery. This is a very good method of printing for event garments, as it allows you to get creative with the design without increasing the cost of the print too much, and the durability isn’t an issue after the event has concluded.

DTG Printing is an option where other print methods are impractical because the minimum is only 5 garments. It is important to note that DTG Printing is not viable on all fabrics so make sure you check with Direct Uniforms before placing your order! 

Sublimation Printing

Sublimation Printing is a completely custom made process. We take synthetic white fabric, dye it to the desired design and then construct the garment from that fabric. One key result of this procedure is that the garment feels remarkably natural and comfortable. A second significant advantage is that unlimited quantities of colour can be employed in a totally cost-effective manner.

Sublimated garments take 4-8 weeks for manufacture. But we can assure you it’s worth the wait! Can you hear the excited whispering as your team takes the field?

“Where did they get those?”

“Wow! I wish our team looked that good!”

We will take your design, and make it a reality. But if you don’t have a design, check out our Custom Design Lab. Or get in touch and we can show you some of the designs we’ve managed to create using sublimation!

So What Should I Do?

A range of factor will influence which method of decoration is right for you. The garment itself, your logo, the purpose, the size it needs to be: all of these things and more will weigh into the decision. Fortunately, Direct Uniforms are experts in this matter! So don’t wait, Contact Us or Request an Obligation Free Quote today for more information about printing and embroidering on your garments!