Variety in DecorationApril 19th, 2012 by Jennifer Vaughn
One of the biggest educational challenges we face day-to-day is explaining the ins-and-outs of decorating on product. It can be a confusing conversation because constraints on one product might not apply to others. In part, it’s because so many consumers are used to the most versatile of all business products – the business card. Taking it one step further, we’re growing more and more accustomed to digital design where options are virtually unlimited.
The most important thing to understand about decoration on products is that we are printing on a three dimensional object made from any variety of material – glass, metal, paper, plastic, cotton, and wool to name a few. The color, type of material, and shape all present different challenges when decorating an item. A logo printed on a white notebook cover will have different decoration standards and options than one printed on a black mug. We overcome this challenge by offering a variety of decorating methods and recommending the best method & product for your needs:
Pad Printing uses a “burned” metal plate as a pool for ink that is then picked up by a rubber or silicone carrier and transferred to the product that you’re using. Pad printing usually allows for printing multiple colors and can be Pantone matched. Pens, golf balls, and other small objects are frequently printed using this method.
Embroidery is a style of decorating textiles with a needle and thread. The number of stitches required to complete your logo decoration is the biggest determinant of cost for embroidery. Like the standardization using Pantone colors for printing, embroidery also uses color standards in the form of Isacord or Madeira thread colors. Fabric, caps, and bags are often decorated via embroidery.
Screen printing uses inks pushed through a woven mesh to transfer design onto an object. Screen printing works best on flat surfaces and is most commonly seen on t-shirts and sweatshirts, though modern machines can also accommodate cylindrical objects like mugs and bottles. Screen printing supports multiple colors and Pantone matching. As we discussed previously you can alter the screen printing methods to achieve different looks on your apparel.
Other product decoration methods include laser engraving, etching, and embossing – all of which are used to great effect on particular materials such as metal, glass, and leather. Other fabric options include transfers, tackle twill, and flocking. If you don’t understand why your RIGHTSLEEVE contact is suggesting a particular item or imprint style, just ask and we’ll be happy to explain.
Have you ever been left in the dark as to why your logo wouldn’t work with a particular item?