What kind of techniques work for printing on hats?

Embroidered CapsEmbroidery

Embroidery is one of the classic technique for customizing hats. You’ve probably seen it in lots of caps, and that’s for good reasons:

  • It stands up really well to the type of wear and tear most hats take
  • It can also be sewn into tough materials that lots of hats are made of
  • Embroidery costs won’t increase if you add more colors
  • Embroidery can be bold and easily visible from far away

You’ll often see embroidery on things like sports caps or hats for a special event that participants wear. If you have a small design with lots of colors that needs to last a while, embroidery is a great choice.

Although embroidery is probably the most popular way to personalize a hat, it’s not the only way! There are some other techniques that can work just as well.

Caps- Screen printingScreen Printing

It’s not always the right fit for your printing project, but it does work in some circumstances. The typical hat choice for screen printing is a foam trucker hat because they don’t usually have centre seams. Seams can make your design look a bit wonky when it’s printed. You’d also be able to screen print on soft military type hats and things like that, as they don’t have centre seams either.

If you do choose screen printing:

  • You’ll get the best results with a hat that doesn’t have a centre seam across the front
  • You’ll also need to make sure you can access a place that has the equipment needed to print hats (not everywhere can!)

Caps- Transfer PrintingTransfer Printing

You can also use transfers to print on hats. They’re easier to handle than screen printing because they let you print your design on a flat piece of paper, and then place it on to your hat.

  • While transfers don’t last forever, they often fade from pieces of clothing because they’re washed really often — that’s not the case with hats most of the time!
  • Transfers can also give you a higher level of detail

Again, like with screen printing, this works best with hats that don’t have a seam running right down the centre at the front.