Screen Printing is the process whereby a logo is exposed onto a mesh screen, with the blank areas coated with an impermeable substance. Ink is then placed onto the screen and a squeegee pushes the ink through the screen in the areas where the logo has been imposed. Colours are printed one at a time so accurate registration is essential.
- Cost-effective solution for larger quantities
- Provides excellent coverage and is especially good for large and bold logos
- Ideal for bags and t-shirts but can also be used for umbrellas, coolers and smaller items like notebooks and folders
- Allows single and multi-colour branding ( up to 6 colours )
This high-volume branding process is favoured for small plastic products such as pens, key-rings, novelty items etc.
Using positives and a light exposure unit, a “logo-etched” plate is made. This plate is placed into the ink-well of the printing machine and a silicone pad transfers the ink from the plate onto the product. Ink is bonded (cured) with the item by sending the printed product through a heating tunnel or oven.
Pad printing allows for up to a 4 colour print and colours are printed one at a time so accurate registration is essential.
Detail in the print can be excellent, however very fine detail and text less than 1mm high should be avoided as these details can “close up” during the printing process due to the ink bleeding.
During laser engraving a logo is burned into the product with a laser replicating the logo with precise accuracy. The laser burns off the top layer of the product revealing the layer beneath, therefore the colour of the engraving will be determined by the colour of the underlying layer.
Laser Engraving is a permanent method of branding and the tonal shades make it an upmarket, subtle choice.There are 2 types of laser engraving machines:
1. YAG laser
Used for engraving metal items like pens, keyrings, mugs, flasks, knives & torches.
2. Co2 laser
Used for engraving organic & coated items like leather folders or wooden boxes
There are 4 different processes that fall under this form of branding.
1. Vinyl Stickers
2. Domed Stickers
3. Heat Transfer
Stickers are digitally printed in CMYK on an adhesive vinyl and then automatically cut to shape. Stickers are then applied onto the products. Vinyl is available in White, Gold, Silver (Matte and Shiny) and clear. Given that the logos are printed in CMYK we are unable to print white or metallic colours.
This branding process is ideal for multi-colour logos that are difficult to replicate in other print techniques, and is especially popular with cooler bags & keyrings. Vinyl Stickers (as explained above) are coated with a polyurethane resin to give a three-dimensional appearance. Domed Stickers can be applied to smooth and rigid surfaces but work best with a purpose-made recessed plaque.
Clear Vinyl cannot be domed.
This branding process is mainly used where the logo is too intricate for screen printing since a digital print allows for more colour and greater detail. A digital image is printed onto a special vinyl surface which is placed onto the product in the required position. The product is then placed in a heat press, and the heat from the press melts the adhesive backing on the vinyl merging it with the fabric. Heat transfer may affect the flexibility of the product because the logo is not cut out.
Only white vinyl can be used for this process and given that this is a CMYK process we are unable to print white or metallic colours.
This branding process works on man-made fabrics only, such as polyester and nylon and is perfect for polyester shirts, nylon bags and umbrellas. The logo is printed (in full colour) onto a special transfer paper using special sublimation inks and cut automatically to the correct shape. The logo is then placed onto the product and heat is applied. The heat causes the inks to transfer from the paper onto the product.
The logo can be as colourful and detailed as required because this is a digital print. Sublimation will not change the flexibility characteristics of the product in the same manner that a Heat Transfer might since only the ink is transferred onto the product.
Sublimation printers cannot print the colour white. We don’t recommend sublimating coloured items and suggest limiting this process to white or natural-colour products.
Digital Transfer Printing
This branding process is perfect for branding ceramic mugs, metal items and certain rigid plastic items.
Digital Transfer Printing is a relatively new technology which makes it possible to print a full-colour, digital print on various substances where previously this wasn’t possible.
A digital print is printed onto a special transfer paper and the product that is being branded is treated with a chemical before the logo is applied. The transfer paper is then placed onto the product, transferring the ink from the paper onto the product. At this stage the branded product is treated with a sealing chemical to ensure permanency of the logo.
The Digital Transfer Printer does not print the colour white so this process is best used on white and metal items. On metal products, the colours in the logo take on a metallic tinge but the ability to create a permanent, full colour branding on metal items is unique to this process and therefore extremely attractive.
Debossing & Foil Hot Stamping
This branding process is both subtle and classy and looks great on folders, binders and select notebooks. A logo is pressed into the surface of a product using both heat and pressure to create a permanent stamped impression in the product.
Foil Hot Stamping
This branding process works best on leather and PU folders as well as select rigid cardboard notebooks. Hot stamping with foil is a similar process to debossing except that a thin foil is pressed into the product to create a colour. Even though heat and pressure are applied, they are applied in lesser volume than during debossing and therefore the impression is not as deep. Foils are available silver and gold.
This branding process is ideal for our clothing, caps and towels as well as selected bags, for a permanent and upmarket branding option. Embroidery is the art of decorating fabric or other materials with designs stitched in strands of thread.
Embroidery machines are driven by computers which read digitized embroidery files created by special software.
Embroidery allows for up to 9 colours to be branded. Pantone colours are used as a reference to match to Marathon Thread colours, however the range of thread colours is limited when compared to pantones and the closest (not always exact) match is used.
Very fine detail and text less than 5mm high should be avoided as it is difficult to achieve this in stitches.