How to create badges

It is now vital that embroiderers can produce high quality badges

With badges becoming more popular, regardless of the industry sector it is now vital that all embroiderers can produce high quality badges. Danielle Park and Natalie Greetham of Madeira UK explain further.

There are a variety of options for badge creation:

  • Direct to garment badges.
  • Appliqué.
  • AS B film.

Direct to garment badges means stitching the badge directly onto the fabric. In this process, as with all digitising, the first step is to eliminate all unnecessary stitches from the design as this will help to achieve greater clarity in your finished embroidery. Skilled digitising will avoid unnecessary areas with three or more layers of stitching, too many stitches in one area can cause thread breaks, holes in the fabric or puckering.

Secondly, confirm the needles you are using are the right size for the thread and have the correct tip for the fabric. Heavy or tightly woven fabrics such as denim, coats or bags require a sharp point. More open weave fabrics such as hoodies, polo tops, sportswear or wool require a ball point to avoid piercing the fibres and generating holes.

Often badges contain intricate small details and text. In order to achieve a clear embroidered design some details may have to be enlarged or simplified. i.e. for thin  lines less than 1mm in width you might want to consider switching to a finer thread such as a 60 or 75 weight. Some fine details may need to be removed from the design completely. To avoid the ‘fall forward’ effect, use a strong and light backing.

Reduce the risk

Alternatively to reduce the risk of damaging light fabrics you can create your badge onto fabric such as cotton drill or felt, hand or laser cut around the design and then heat seal your badge onto the garment. Textured appliqué badge fabrics such as Rasotex and TexCotton eliminate the need for a stitched background reducing your stitch count and run time.

There are specialist badge films such as Madeira’s ‘B’ film where badges can also be composed entirely of stitches. The films are designed so that the embroidered badge can be pulled free, no fiddly scissor work or laser cutting required. The badges are then ready to be sold individually and sewn or applied to the garment with heat activated adhesive film by the end user. This is a fantastic option for school uniforms. This film can also be used in an appliqué method i.e. embroider all of your badge directly onto the film except the satin stitch border then include your garment into the hoop with the ‘B’ film and attach by completing the satin stitched border.

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