Screen Printing vs Embroidery

When it comes to applying a logo, image or text to an item of clothing, you can choose between screen printing or embroidery. Though both have the desired effect of replicating your design onto the fabric, each process is completely different, creating results that – though similar – have differences in terms of longevity and overall impact. Here, we explain what makes the two processes different and what their benefits are relative to one another, as well as suggesting which option may best suit your requirements.

Screen printing

Screen printing works by applying inks to a substrate followed by a heat curing process. The use of ink allows for this type of branding to be used not only on clothes, but on all manner of materials such as promotional mugs, signs and pens as well. A mesh screen with a stencil is created for each ink colour, and the ink is then pushed through this, with each colour built up to create the eventual desired logo, image or words on your object. This method of branding also allows for the use of special effects, such as distressed or gradient colours and looks.
The special effects are only possible with screen printing, which gives it the edge in this respect over embroidery. However, screen printed designs are not immune to fading over time, which is why it is not the first choice for workwear.
Screen printing is most commonly the branding option for T-shirts. It is cost effective and the cost does not relate to the size of the logo, compared to embroidery.


Embroidery involves the stitching of a thread directly onto your choice of clothing. Unlike screen printing, you cannot create the same effects such as shading, so some logos or images have to be slightly altered.
However, this style of branding creates a somewhat professional look and feel, due in part to its heritage and has a more sumptuous feel and quality. As well as this, embroidered designs to tend to last longer than screen printed ones, so should last the life of the clothing item.

The standard positions for embroidered clothing are to the chest areas, the sleeves and also the back of the clothing. Embroidery is also popular on caps and headwear as well as bags and towelling products.

At Midway Clothing and Promotions, we specialise in both screen printing and embroidering our customers logos on a range of clothing and objects. For more information, or to arrange the creation of your promotional material, get in touch with our friendly team of experts today, and let us put your designs into practice.