Category Archives: Garment Decoration

Your Logo – it has power ……. It says a lot about you!

Why do we put logo’s on our work clothing? It doesn’t sound like a difficult question to answer, in fact there are numerous answers! But lets just take a while to consider just a few, why you’re doing it and how to get the best result from it:

Identification: Probably one of the most important reasons for putting your logo on your staff uniform or workwear. You’re people need to be identified when they’re at work, from customers knowing who works in the shop (they’re not always behind a counter) to identifying Which company that tradesman is working for on site, Identification is a major issue nowadays.

logo jacket

Your logo identifies you at work

Lets get right to one of the biggest issues here; You want to stand out! Think about where you’re staff are going to be seen & how to get exposure for your business brand.

Face to face? That’s easy, logo on the breast so it’s in front of people approaching you & talking to you.

Mobile around an area? Be it a waitress, a shop floor worker or a window cleaner (one of my favourite examples) consider which parts of you are going to be seen; A window cleaner usually has his back to everyone so it’s a great idea to have a logo there, where it will be seen. 

Visibility: If you’re doing a trade show or event it makes sense to get as much exposure as you can, With the increase in visibility comes a return on your investment and it’s crucial you get the best return on your money.

Advertising; Now the press won’t like this one too much, but traditional advertising is a game of diminishing returns. Higher costs, falling audiences & consumers who are jaded by being bombarded with papers, emails, text, flyers. You need to keep the fact you’re in business out there but you don’t want to alienate potential customers.

Rugby shirt logo'd

Rugby shirt with logo

Every time you, or a member of your staff, walks past someone in the street your business identity passes before their eyes; take a walk, wearing your uniform, down your High Street & keep an eye on how many people glance at what’s embroidered on your shirt – you’ll be surprised!

Think about what your customers can do for you. We all know word of mouth recommendations are the best advertising you can get. You don’t pay for it and no matter how much you tell people what a great job you’re doing, if it comes from an independent source someone knows it’ll carry a lot more weight.

We do a lot of garments as promotional gifts for our customers, Jackets, fleeces, Beanie hats, all the stuff people will wear because who doesn’t love a freebie? If you’ve a hundred customers wearing a hat with your company name on there they’re advertising for you every time they wear it that’s a colossal reach, at very little cost, and it’ll still be working for you one, two, three years down the line.

Image: If you think I’m going to let a plumber, builder, electrician etc. loose in my house who’s got holes in his pants & mastic all over his clothes you’ve got another thing coming! The image you present to customers sets the tone for the work you’re going to complete for them. So get off on the right foot by presenting a clean, smart professional image for your business. There’s hundreds of competitors out there and as the saying goes “You only get one chance to make a first impression”

Health & Safety: Probably one of the first reasons that comes to mind, but considering the above, not necessarily the best reason for that business expenditure. Yes, people need to be protected, kept clean & safe, but before begrudging the expenditure in providing staff uniforms or workwear consider the benefits to your business.

 

So we’ve got a little bit about why you do it, next we’ll talk about how to do it………

Work Fleeces: From Chemical Goo & Recycled Water Bottles to Smart Workwear!

Work fleeces are almost everywhere nowadays – I don’t know quite how many different fleece garments we have on the Stitch & Print website but I DO know that fleece revolutionised workwear (as well as outdoor gear) in the early 1980s when Malden Mills needed a new product to survive in the cut throat textile trade! That early surge shows no signs of disappearing – I reckon that about 35% of the custom workwear that we sell is made of fleece.

But what is the fleece itself made of?

Polyester is the answer – known as terylene or Dacron back in the 1940s – and made by reacting two chemicals, terephthalic acid and ethylene glycol (aka antifreeze) together to create a polymer.  Today, a lot of fleece actually has a high content of recycled polyester, up to 80%, and most of it comes from drinks bottles.  This recycling isn’t just good in terms of removing the plastic bottle waste from landfill but it’s also more energy efficient than making new or virgin polyester.

Going from liquid polyester to a fleece garment takes a number of stages, as you’d imagine, with some familiar from other textile manufacturing and others unique to fleece.
Firstly, the chemicals are mixed and heated under pressure to create polyester (or PET for short).  As this cools, it forms a viscous liquid that can be extruded through a disk with tiny holes (a bit like a showerhead) called a spinneret.  As the liquid sprays out of the spinneret and comes into contact with the air, it hardens into fibres which are wound on to a spool and form a structure a bit like a think rope, called tow.  The tow is then pulled through the heated rollers of a drawing machine (a bit like a mangle) to create longer, stronger fibres with the polymer PET molecules aligned.  It then goes through a crimping machine to make it crinkled and folded like an accordion before being dried and cut into short lengths for baling – it’s beginning to look a lot like wool!

The fleece production process from now on also seems to be very like wool with the cut tow going through a carding machine to align the fibres and then into a spinning machine to twist strands into a finer finished yarn.

Most fleece garments use fabric in a block colour and this is made by dyeing the polyester yarn and drying it again before the knitting process. However, patterned fleece fabric is made by printing on to finished fabrics, just as with other textiles.

But back to fleece.  The manufacturer now has their coloured polyester yarn but how does this become the fleece that we know and love?  First it is knitted to create  a continuous tube of cloth, about 1.5m wide and several hundred metres long.  To achieve the fuzzy texture, this knitted material is next fed through a napper, which runs mechanical bristles along the cloth (usually on both sides of the fabric) to raise the surface fibres.  These are then trimmed to an even length in a shearing machine and that gives you the textured piled fabric that we know as fleece.

By its very nature, fleece is durable, water resistant and with moisture wicking properties to keep you cool and it dries quickly and is light, soft to the touch and, best of all, warm because of the way that it traps air in its fibres.

Fleece can also be given other properties by spraying it with a textile finish such as anti-pilling (to prevent pesky bobbles) or waterproofing or by layering it with other fabrics such as Lycra to give it additional stretch for sportswear and work fleeces for specific conditions and industries.

A majority of the work fleeces that we customise and sell are made of what’s regarded as regular or medium weight fleece (about 370g per metre and also known as Polar Fleece 200).  You’ll also come across microfleece which is aka 100 and weighs about 240g per metre and then there’s heavy weight fleece, aka 300 and with a weight of about 400 or more grams per metre.
So browse the website and have a look at our huge range of fleece jackets, fleece hoodies, fleece hats, fleece gloves and everything else that you can possibly think of to be made in fleece – even hi vis custom fleece workwear garments.

In the 35 or so years that fleece has been on the market, it has proven just how adaptable it can be and the developments in making it from recycled polymer just add to its benefits.  Who knows what we’ll be making from fleece 35 years from now – but it’s already been into space!

Bling Bling! Just add Diamantes …..

Diamante Designs: Adding Some Sparkle to Clothing Decoration

hen party T-shirt decorated with diamante

Hen party T shirt to bring added sparkle to Carlisle nightlife!

 As well as embroidery & print we also supply garments with diamante designs; Ideal for hen parties, anniversaries & birthdays diamante encrusted garments are fast becoming one of the most popular ways of glamming up your look.

Stitch & Print can make you sparkle by personalising t-shirts and various other fashion items with diamantes, If you would like to find out more, or get a quotation, you can either email office@stitchandprint.co.uk or telephone 016973 43546 with the quantity and type of garment you would like us to create.

starfield design highlighted with diamanteThere are a couple of options on production techniques which we have:

Either your design is carefully created using diamante stones, which are then heat-sealed to the garment. The diamantes are even available in a variety of colours. Encrusting garments with diamantes really adds a bit of sophistication and bling to your wardrobe! But it isn’t always cheap to create your personalised look; A mould has to be created for each design so kitting out all the chicks for your hen party can be expensive!

Thankfully for the more popular designs we have a range of stock alternatives that are economical.

Alternatives and Additions to Diamante Bling for the Next Party Trip!

 The alternatives are holographic foil and Glitterflex:

queen of hearts design in glitterfoil as an alternative to diamante

Glitterflex and Holographic foils another alternative to diamante for added sparkle on Cumbrian nights out!

We use holographic foil, which is a type of transfer vinyl to replicate diamantes; It’s cut into stone shape & sized pieces & applied to the garment & the reflective nature gives a similar look to diamantes.

Glitterflex is a type of transfer vinyl that adds a lot of sparkle to your design however it doesn’t give the bright “catch the light” reflection that you get with stones or holographic foil.

Both of these decoration types add a real wow factor to your outfit and one-offs can be produced at a fraction of the cost of using diamantes, something well worth considering if you’re catering for individual designs for all the girls!

Be it diamantes, foil or glitterflex we’ve got the means to really give your party outfit the edge over the competition!

Print Production; The dye sublimation route

JS001 T shirt finished with dye sublimation printing for a permanent colour fast design

T shirt with design printed by dye sublimation technique in Cumbria

One of the processes we use for production of printed garments is dye sublimation. This process uses an ink image that is transferred by the use of heat into the fabric of the garment. Sublimation is the process of transforming the solid, dried, ink into a gas. The gas is then infused into the hollow polyester fibres of the garment where it cools and instantly solidifies to form a permanent image.

Traditionally polyester garments have been used primarily in the sports wear markets. Cricket, Rugby, Football, Basketball & Netball teams have used the sublimation route to achieve striking designs for team wear. Club badges, sponsor logos & details & numbers can be incorporated into a fabric which has ideal qualities for comfort & wear as well as visual effect.

Benefits of Dye Sublimation Printing for Garment Decoration

One of the other benefits of sublimation printing for garments is in the production of one-off & short run requirements: Because there are no screens to produce for manufacture it’s possible to take an off the shelf garment, for instance a gym or running T-Shirt or vest & add images as required very economically.

One of the traditional downsides is that garments were 100% polyester. That isn’t always a feel people want. In recent times manufacturers have started using cotton rich garments with a polyester micro coating. This gives the benefit of a cotton feel with the flexibility of sublimation printing. One of the latest is the Russel HD T – here’s a couple of points raised by them.

“There’s a myth that sublimation printing only works on 100% polyester. Not true. Our polycotton HD T is ideal for sublimation print – we’ve tested it and the results speak for themselves.”

One of the other traditional issues was the availability of colours. If you wanted white you were catered for. If you could live with a pastel shade you’d survive! But beyond that there wasn’t much to look at. Back to Russel

“There’s another myth that sublimation only works on white cloth. Not true. White might be best for colour reproduction but it’s not the only option – we offer 3 marl colours and they produce a fashionably muted, retro feel – just what a large chunk of the market demands.” 

Pros and Cons of Dye Sublimation

The issue with colour reproduction is valid; The base colour of the garment will affect the shade of colours added to the garment, White is perfect but, for instance, use a pink shirt & those clouds will be pink! Your yellows will have a peach look to them but if you want a finish which is permanent & won’t peel you’ve just found a perfect solution.

Personalised Robes: A Tasteful Gift For the One You Love

Looking for something a bit different as a gift? How about personalised robes? These luxurious items are ideal gifts for Christmas, Mothers Day & Fathers Day! After all we can’t leave Dad out can we? For the ladies they work really well as a fantastic accessory for that girlie pamper day you’ve got lined up for your hen party!

They’re also a perfect add on for hotels & spas! Simply add in your company logo and branding to create your unique top end look & feel.

The Stitch & Print Range of Personalised Robes

tc21kimono style personalised robes decorated and supplied by Stitch & Print

Luxurious kimono style personalised robes make a superb gift for a loved one!

TC21 Towel City Kimono Towel Robe

100% heavyweight cotton.

  • Two pockets.
  • Tie belt.
  • Hanging loop.
  • Excellent absorbency qualities.
  • White or Navy
  • 2 different sizes

 

 

Man showing off the TC22 towel city bath robe in white.TC22 Towel City Shawl Collar Towel Robe

100% heavyweight cotton.

  • Two pockets.
  • Tie belt.
  • Hanging loop.
  • Excellent absorbency qualities.
  • available in 2 sizes

 

 

tc86 waffle robe is particularly suitable for personalisation with diamante designs.TC86 Towel City Waffle Robe

65% polyester/35% cotton.

  • Lightweight fabric.
  • Kimono style robe.
  • Two patch pockets.
  • Tie front.
  • Hanging loop.

The TC86 is ideal for hen party pamper days as the fabric is suitable for decorating with diamante stones to add sparkle to your weekend with the girls!

Design your own unique personalised robes with embroidery to either the breast or the back as  your imagination sees fit. With a little help from Stitch & Print our robes will solve some of your Christmas and big occasion gift headaches!