Hoodie Decoration Options

What technologies are used to decorate my hoodie?

While you don’t have to know the finer detail we find that clients often like to understand the technologies which may be used to decorate their leavers hoodies when they order from Leavers Hoodies Company.

The following 3 options are those most widely used on hoodies:


When you order your hoodies with a school crest (or a team badge) the design is put onto the garment using state of the art embroidery technology. Before the garment is touched the crest design is first digitised by a program which transforms it into stitches. The digitised file is then loaded onto the embroidery machine, colours are programmed in and the logo is sewn onto the garment.

Embroidering of your school’s crest is often the most expensive decoration option chosen when customising your garments. But, the quality is great and the crest is likely to last, and look good, for as long as the garment is worn.

The equipment used for hoodie embroidery requires the garment to be held tight in a hoop (with a piece of bio-degradable backing material behind it). This is clamped underneath the head. Each head contains up to 15 different needles, meaning that each embroidered design can incorporate up to 15 different coloured threads. This means that quite complex, multi-coloured designs can be achieved. The machine then gives a set of instructions to the needles, which embroider the design onto the fabric. In-house at Leavers Hoodies Company we have the capacity to embroider between 5,000-10,000 hoodies (or other garments) per week.

Embroidery Advantages

  • Intricate, multi-colour designs are no problem with modern digitising techniques and machinery
  • Pricing not related to amount of colours used
  • Hundreds of thread colour options (Pantone matching available)
  • Professional looking, long lasting and durable (minimal deterioration with washing)
  • Most Material types and locations on garments are fine to embroider

Embroidery Dis-Advantages

  • Expensive for large design areas
  • Difficult to replicate tonal/photographic effects
  • Very small lettering is difficult to achieve
  • Slightly longer production and lead time than printing (depending on stitch count)

Screen printing

Traditional / Direct Screen printing involves printing ink directly on to the garment fabric through a number (one screen per colour) of mesh covered aluminium screens.

The leavers design (for the required colour) is printed onto a film positive in opaque black ink. This is then placed onto the screen (that is coated in photo-sensitive emulsion) and exposed to UV light. The non-exposed area is then washed away using water, and the resulting stencil image is then revealed on the screen.

Ink is placed on the screen, and a squeegee is used to push the ink through the stencil image (and mesh) and onto clothing. The printed garment is then dried by being passed through a gas heater.

Screen Printing Advantages

  • Cost effective for large bulk orders (20+, 1-colour)
  • Fine design detail is possible
  • Endless ink colour options (including Pantone matching)
  • Long lasting Print technique
  • Size of print doesn’t affect price

Screen Printing Dis-Advantages

  • Not possible for small orders (<20pcs)
  • Expensive for multi-colour designs
  • Limited by fabric type (i.e difficult to print/cure elastane)
  • Limited by print position (i.e difficult to print near seams)

Transfer printing

Transfer printing is the application of a printed media onto your garment, using a heat press. The use of transfer printing on leavers hoodies is generally limited to names, or team numbers, or maybe the name of the school printed on the sleeve.

These elements are cut on a plotter cutter using textile film that is then applied using a heat press to the garment.

Transfer Printing Advantages

  • Photographic, highly detailed images are possible
  • Ideal for Individual Number or Nickname personalisation
  • Can be applied to most different material types and decoration areas
  • Cost effective for small order quantities (10-25)
  • Most transfers can be stored for use at a later date

Transfer Printing Dis-Advantages

  • Expensive for large design areas
  • Can have a slightly ‘plasticky’ feel
  • Takes longer per print than screen printing

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