You don't need a PHD to understand BRANDING!

March 14, 2019

At Alignment Promotions, we are always striving to educate our clients to make better decisions when it comes to promotional products and apparel. The best way to do this – education! We find the greater our clients understand the process behind the products the greater decisions they can make based on the knowledge they have accumulated. 


One of the most common areas of confusion for clients is branding. What branding is possible on what product and what are the pros and cons of that specific branding. 

“ How many colours can we print”

“ What is an editable vector based file?”

“ Why won't the detail in my logo show very well?”

“ Why do I have to pay a setup, I've already paid it”

“  What will look best, embroidery or print?”

 If these questions sound familiar, don’t worry – your not alone! These are some of the most commonly asked questions we get, so here we have compiled an easy to read “Yay” and “Nay” list for the most popular branding methods. 



Embroidery has always been a favourite for textile branding. The perceived value is high and it gives a finish that just can't be matched by printing. 


- Can be put onto a wide variety of materials and shapes

- A large number of colours are available

- Lasts a long time (doesn’t wear off as easily as print)

- Professional appearance

- Can be washed just like a normal garment (no special precautions)


- Less affordable on smaller quantities

- Cost can be expensive if the size of the embroidery is very large

- Cotton colours slightly vary from print colours 


Embroidery cost is based on the number of stitches required to complete the branding, not the number of colours. Thus, the size of your logo will heavily affect the price.


Editable Vector based file (.eps, .ai, .cdr) 

A high resolution bitmap

256321D3 16A1 450F 8E3E DF7269EE8CC2



Along with Embroidery Screen printing is the most common branding method. 


- Can be branded onto a larger range of substrate materials than digital technology, including fabrics, glass, wood, metals, and many high-tech materials.

- Variety of inks are available including metallics, glow in the dark, water-based and other speciality inks.

- Vibrancy of colours

- Perfect match to PMS colour

- Multiple colours can be printed on 1 print area


- More expensive the more colours you print

- Not environmentally friendly (unless speciality inks have been used)

- Relatively complex -Screen printing can be quite complex depending on the design and project because it has more steps than other methods. 

- There is a set up for every colour printed


Editable Vector based file (.eps, .ai, .cdr) 

24540EF4 CA36 4D3F 9C76 1B3E127438BD



This is a CMYK solvent ink print process onto a white vinyl sheet that is heat pressed on to the fabric. 


- Fast to produce as there are no inks to make up

- More economical if you have multiple colours. The Set-Up cost is the same for any amount of colours, as is the per unit print cost.

- Incredible detail achieved at high quality

- Photographic images can be used to great success


- Each image needs to be cut precisely to eliminate the extra paper you do not want to press onto the image. This can be very time-consuming.

- Digital Transfer is a CMYK process meaning some PMS colours are difficult to match 

- Larger size prints often are not economic and other print methods may become a better option

- The colour will fade after a number of washes


- Editable Vector based file (.eps, .ai, .cdr) 

- A high-resolution bitmap

 C53EE2FE 6561 4660 845A 5E93D1B0D3D5


Often used onto small items such as pens, notebooks, keyrings.


- Can print onto curved surfaces

- Superior quality onto textured surfaces

- High-quality resolution on finer details like phone numbers etc onto small objects


- Small print area

- Limited on how many colours can be printed

- The more colours you print the more expensive the price becomes


- Editable Vector based file (.eps, .ai, .cdr) 

69A82033 B521 475F 8611 BD7A4840EA1A



Sublimation printing is, by definition, the sublimating of dye in the fabric. The major difference to sublimation from other branding methods is the branding sits inside the yarn of the material rather than sitting on top of the material. 


- Won't “flake off” like other prints. Because the branding is impregnated into the material it will wear very well.

- Full garment branding. You can print on every surface of the material and are not limited to print areas

- Intricate details and shading available to a high standard

- 100% customisation. The advantage of sublimation printing is that no plates are required, so it is ideal for customizing designs with changing elements.


- Must be onto polyester fabric

- Materials need to be white or light coloured. You cannot sublimate print onto dark or black coloured items.

- Limited as to what products you can sublimate on


Sublimation printing is matched to CMYK colours, not PMS colours.


- Editable Vector based file (.eps, .ai, .cdr) 

03689AFD ECE7 4C2B 935E AC4A7C7DF4BB