Embellishment is applied at different stages of production depending the effect it will have on the fabric.
Silkscreen: Since the silkscreen process involves high heat (and sometimes several passes through the heater), it will shrink just about any fiber. To be sure that your finished garment is the correct size, we send oversized fabric squares to be silkscreened, then we cut them, often one by one. In this way, the fabric has already shrunk before it is cut to the pattern piece. This adds a great deal of handling time to the process, but it is one of the reasons your garment fits as well as it does.
Embroidery: Cut pieces and finished garments move to our embroidery department during all stages of manufacture, depending on the garment. A women’s suit top (which is lined) is embroidered before it is sewn together, when finished, the lining protects one’s skin from the embroidery backing. We use computerized multi-head machines. It can be mesmerizing to watch a complex design gradually appear on the fabric!
Heat Transfer: Heat transfer is much like silkscreen, in that it must be applied to flat pieces, either oversized fabric squares, or very often, cut stripes. Most of our text on stripes is done using this process. The heat- and pressure-sensitive material is cad-cut, and then manually trimmed. It takes up to three presses to adhere the material to the fabric. Again—labor intensive but worth it.