Our application methods explained

We use a variety of high-quality printing methods for our customised orders from embroidery to vinyl and screen printing. Different techniques are better suited to specific garment types due to the different outer materials. 

With our vast experience of garment printing we have outlined below the process of each technique to help you choose the best customisation for your order.


Embroidery is a great way to advertise your logo/brand or text on company garments in a professional way. It is ideal for small to medium areas of application. The absolute maximum size we provide is approx. 26cm x 26cm. These larger areas are not advisable for embroidery as it affects the garment fitting.   

The embroidery technique involves a frame being put on a particular area of a garment to apply tension for the stitching. Then the logo/text design is uploaded to the machine for the automated needlework to begin, incorporating the colour variations of threads.


We use industry standard materials and machines operated by experienced staff to provide the highest quality threading.

The embroidery technique can be applied to most garments but has especially great results on polo shirts, sweatshirts, aprons/tabards, fleeces and jackets.

Screen printing

Screen printing is a process that separates the different coloured sections in a design and mesh screens are created for each of those colours. Plastisol ink or water-based ink is then poured individually through the mesh frames to apply the final design. The print is then dried and finished for long lasting effect.


This technique is great for large colourful designs that will be printed multiple times on one or many different types of garments. Screen printing is ideal for big vibrant designs on t-shirts, hoodies, shell jackets and polo shirts. Due to the lengthy process of this technique, it is only available for bulk orders of over 25 garments. 


Printing via vinyl transfer is one of the most common ways personalised printing is done in small quantities. The design/text is cut into a piece of vinyl with a cutter, then the vinyl is applied to the garment via a heat press. 


This method is very efficient with clean results and is ideal for all designs that only require one or two colours. Vinyl printing is available on all garments apart from Fleeces and wool based materials. The vast majority of our work wear customisation like hi-vis garments are done with this method. 

Direct to garment printing 

Direct to garment printing (DTG) is a process where a specialised printer is used to apply special ink to the garments. The garments are prepared with a fixing solution for the ink to be absorbed easily and then dried. For this method the final printed garments are also washed to clear the fixing solution.


This type of printing is great for quick turnaround orders with multi-colour designs and text. Due to the limiting size of the printers, we only use this method on t-shirts, polo shirts, hoodies and sweatshirts. The second reason is that these types of garments are easily dried and washed after the special printing process. 


Check out how the personalisation process works at Tops Workwear.

Long row of orange safety jackets being embroidered

Other points to mention

There are certain methods we do not use on particular types of garments. For example, we will not use vinyl printing on certain brands of shell jackets and gilets. These selections will not be available in the customisation at checkout. If you do request a certain type of method that is not offered or recommended, we will contact you via email or telephone with alternative options and suggestions.