Embroidery is where cotton thread in the form of a logo or detail is sewn or woven into the fabric or material and is very effective in branding anything of a textile nature (eg. caps, T-shirts, apparel). It is generally considered the best branding method for smaller areas (eg. left chest) and is especially the case where the logo has many colours as the costs are determined by the number of stitches applied known commonly as the stitch count. Embroidery provides a professional finish and has a high perceived value and there is no limit to the number of thread colours that can be used.
Screen Printing involves pressing ink through a fine mesh screen, leaving a clean and crisp imprint on the materials surface. It is most commonly used on T-shirts, jackets, bags etc. but can also be used to brand larger images on metal, plastic, leather, PVC and wooden objects - basically anything with a flat surface. It is often the most economical form of branding, especially on large areas or where the logo and images have few colours and patterns. The garment or product with the fresh ink or screen print is put through a heat bed or heat tunnel in order to cure the inks so that they become permanent. Limitations may exist in reproducing fine detail and colour registration due to the potential for inks to bleed through the wider weave of some materials.
Pad Printing is an ideal means of branding logos and images to provide excellent colour and detail on small, hard or unusually shaped items. Pad printing involves a printing plate with an image etched into the surface which is then covered in ink, applied and then cleaned leaving only the image. Branding to a maximum approximate size of 50mm and up to 4 colours is achievable. The application of a pad print is most common on small plastic or metal items like pens, golf balls, desk items etc.
Laser Engraving is commonly used on metal objects (eg. pens, key rings) to a maximum logo size of approx 30mm. It can also be used on some plastic, glass and wooden surfaces. Laser engraving is a computer generated, subtle and precise method of branding that leaves a professional and permanent form of branding that will never come off.
Debossing & Embossing these are similar processes that create a different result. Both processes involve making a metal plate and counter. The plate is mounted on a press and the material (leather, vinyl or paper) is stamped between the plate and counter. This force of pressure pushes the material into the plate creating the impression. Embossing creates a raised impression on stock pushes the image above the level of the material. Debossing is the reverse of embossing. Debossing creates a depressed impression on stock pushes the image below the level of the surface. Images below show debossing to leather compendiums.
Foil Stamping is achieved by applying foil in the required design, which is heated and pressed onto the surface of the product, leaving a bright metallic gold or silver effect. Foil stamping is ideal for items such as diaries and compendiums and along with embossing is the highest quality of branding for leather, PVC or PU 'leather look' items. This method can also be used on paper, board and plastic surfaces.
Plastisol Transfers a plastisol print is a heat and pressure transfer applied to the materials surface (eg. apparel, bags, caps) and is used when the required colours or detail are too intricate for screen printing or if the surface being used is not suitable (eg. too porous). Plastisol transfers have a higher profile and smoother finish than screen printing and are an excellent option for 4-colour process or photographic images.
Decal Printing/Kiln fired Decals are generally used on glassware or mugs where the artwork is printed in the desired number of colours onto a transfer and then fired onto a coffee mugs or glassware. Decals can be made in 1 to 4 spot colours or even 4-colour-process. Logos are commonly applied as 'one position', half wrap decals or 'two position' (front and back) and full wrap decals. Special decals may be used on glassware to give either a 'frosted logo' look or a 'frosted glass' look.
Rubber Badging is where a logo or image is created using a rubber or PVC badge (it can also be done using metal) and is then attached to the product.
Product Packaging allows additional branding, identification and packaging options to enhance the presentation of products. There are various methods, such as custom made boxes to house product, backing cards for lapel pins, heat sealed or poly-bags with a retail style header card printed with product and/or company information. Product packaging is generally customised to suit the product.