6. PUCKERING
(IMPROPER SET-UP)

Nowadays embroidery requires humans and robots to work together. Humans set everything up and the robots to do the rest of the work (because they’re so fast and precise). Sometimes if the embroidery technician is inexperienced or in a hurry things tend to go awry. One of the issues that occurs is called 'puckering'. It will show up after the garment is washed. Its caused by too much tension on the garment during the sewing process. If you’ve ever received a complaint about a sew out looking like the picture to the right, it might be time to find a new decorator.


5. DIGITIZING
(BAD DENSITY)

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If you’ve gotten something embroidered you might have heard the term “digitizing”. This process isn’t as cut and dry as some would think. It takes a keen eye and an in-depth knowledge of not only the software used but the embroidery machines, thread, and the material being decorated. Sometimes everything looks dandy on the screen but when it comes to the physical piece things can change. Density refers to how close the stitches are to each other. Density too high you might be paying for more stitches that you should. If it’s too low the stitches will be far apart and your design will have open spaces and look like its missing elements. Responsible embroiders will do a sew-out test to verify that everything is A-okay. Is your decorator doing that for you?


4. DIGITIZING CONT.
(SMALL TEXT)

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Embroidery is very prominently used for designs placed on the chest of polos and tees or on the thigh area of sweats and shorts. These areas are small and require the design needs to be sized accordingly. Always be conscious of the size of the text in any design or logo. Especially in embroidery the “resolution” typically isn’t very high. This will cause small text to be unreadable. If the embroiderer is diligent at the helm they will pick up on this and notify you. If they are asleep you might receive garments with unreadable personalizations or company name. What’s the point of putting that info on the garment if you can’t read it? You don’t want to have to send the order back. If you’re unsure about text size ask your decorator for their expert opinion.


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3. CONSISTENCY
(DO THE COLORS MATCH?)

There are lots of different manufacturers of inks out there. Each one has there own hues and shades. If you have an order with embroidery and print decorations how can you be sure that the colors will match? The best way to do this is to get PMS color profiles and make sure your decorator can accommodate. This will ensure the blue thread will look the same as the blue print and the blue heat press vinyl. Consistency and attention to detail will make your customer happy.


2. PLACEMENT
(CONTINUITY IS KEY)

Isn’t the point of having uniforms uniformity? Even when the sizing or style of the garment varies the logo should be placed in the same location every time. If some are tilted to the left and others to the right it’s time to find a more experience decorator. There really isn’t much you can do when this happens other than to get the order replaced but that takes time and time is money. You shouldn’t have to hope that the decorator will place the logo straight this time. You should know they’ll do it every time.


1. PROOFS
(HOW DOES IT LOOK?)

Proofs are important in this industry. They allow you and your customer to know exactly what you’re getting. Logo placement, sizing, garment styles, and color combos should be presented properly to ensure everything is up to snuff. Are you getting a complete look at your products before they go into production? If not, you may not be getting what you need.