Embroidered custom patches are great for representing team spirit with creativity and uniqueness. Unlike pre-designed or mass-produced patches, made-to-order patches allow organizations to control many aspects of their order’s production. Sellers and makers of customized embroidered patches give their customers the liberty to create their own designs and choose their preferred logo sizes.
Most patch makers even let their customers choose the materials to be used for the production of their orders. The only limitations to the uniqueness and creativity of made-to-order patches are the customer’s imagination and budget.
To order unique and good-quality outputs, customers should have basic knowledge on the different types of threads used for making embroidered patches. When customers know their options, they become more keen on assessing the compatibility of their design with their budget and their patch-maker’s materials.
Below are the eight types of threads commonly used for making embroidered custom patches:
1. Bobbin Thread:
This type of thread comes in cotton, polyester, and cotton-covered polyester varieties. However, its fibers are finer than the fibers of the average embroidery threads. Bobbin threads allow patch makers to create embroidered images with less bulky back stitches. This makes them ideal for creating light-weight patches for uniforms with thin or delicate fabrics.
2. Button-and-Craft Thread:
This thread is thicker than cotton threads, and can produce bulky embroidered images. Although its thickness assures its durability for machine-washing, it is not ideal for creating emblems with detailed images.The thick fibers can make small details appear like unprofessional and undefined stitch-detailing.
3. Cotton Thread:
This is often the most available and most affordable type of thread used for regular-quality patches. Cotton threads are medium in thickness, usually averaging at size 50. Due to its light-weight nature, the fibers of regular cotton threads are usually more loose than the fibers of polyester threads. This makes cotton-embroidered images prone to distortion. To prolong the shape and quality of embroidered emblems, patches that are made from this type of thread should not be machine-washed too frequently.
4. Polyester Thread:
Also known as the “all-purpose” thread, patch-makers, seamstresses, tailors, and hobbyists alike commonly use this type of thread due to its durability and elasticity. This type of thread is more expensive than cotton thread because it is treated with silicone-coating. The treatment allows the thread to have smoother and stronger fibers which can retain color vibrancy for a longer period of time.
5. Cotton-covered Polyester Thread:
This type of thread combines polyester thread with cotton thread. The silicone-coating of the polyester fibers are protected by cotton fibers. This increases the thread’s resistance to extreme temperatures. This makes it an ideal material for custom patches with iron-on backing.
6. Metallic Thread:
Metallic threads are considered a type of specialty crafting material. A good quality metallic thread can maintain its luster for many years, but it may cost higher than usual embroidery threads such as wool and cotton-covered polyester. This type of thread is ideal for patches that require special designs or decorative-detailing.
7. Silk Thread:
This type of thread is considered one of the most expensive and luxurious choices for embroidered patches. The fibers are obtained from silk worms which are especially cultured under controlled environments in specific regions of the world. Silk threads are known for their sheen and smooth quality. This thread is extremely durable because it is highly elastic and is safe for heat-pressing.
8. Wool Thread:
This type of thread is ideal for embroidery because of its vibrancy and fiber-durability. Most expert patch-makers prefer to use this type of thread because it can hold an embroidered image’s shape for a long period of time. The fibers are compact enough to withstand frequent machine-washing and heat-pressing.
Customers should always remember that the intensity of colors, visibility of details, and durability of a patch depend on the thickness and quality of threads used for creating it. The thickness of a thread is measured by “size-numbers”. The higher the size-number gets, the thicker the width of the thread gets. Although thread thickness doesn’t always affect the pricing of the patch, it may increase its durability. This is why it is important for customers to consult their patch makers before deciding which type of thread should be used for their embroidered patches.
Aside from the cost and the quality of each thread, the total cost and the quality of custom patches may also depend on the following factors: 1.) The amount of time allotted for a customer’s order to be produced, 2.) the availability of the requested threads, 3.) the technology used for creating the embroidered images, 4.) the choice of backing materials, and 6.) the skills of the customer’s chosen patch-maker. To assure that your patch maker can deliver good quality results, take the time to ask them about the following factors and ask them for samples of their previous outputs.