CHEAT SHEET Embossing and Debossing

photos courtesy of Apple Imprints Apparel Inc.
Embossing and Debossing
Goes Hollywoood
Embossing and debossing aren’t just limited to jackets and bags. Everyday
wear like sweatshirts and T-shirts – including this custom work by Apple
Imprints Apparel Inc. (circle 107 on Free Info Card) – can capably feature this
decoration technique.
“Upselling a shirt with an embossed or
debossed decoration will help a distributor
stand out as creative by offering other
decorating options.”
Mary Poissant, Apple Imprints Apparel
100% cotton and 50/50 cotton/poly blends
will work, Castillo says. “Denim gives you a
really good three-dimensional effect,” she says.
“We also emboss canvas work jackets. That has
become pretty popular because they’re American-made and union-made.” In addition,
sweatshirts, pants, T-shirts and even caps work
with the decorating technique.
Embossed/Debossed buyers
That understated yet stylish look that
embossed and debossed garments carry often
make them suitable for the corporate environment. “We’ve seen several distributors
sell these decorating methods to corporations
looking for a more subtle corporate appearance,” Poissant says. “Retail lines take to the
process, as well, giving more depth to the garments’ appearance and value.”
Because the price point of embossed and
debossed apparel can be set a bit higher than
the average embellished garment, and because
the apparel itself is typically a bit higher-end,
Grant argues that corporate clients, such as
banks, that want to offer incentives to their
employees, should be a top target among distributors.
For embossed apparel in particular, Castillo
says most of her distributors’ requests originate from end-users who want denim jackets
for a particular program. “One would think
it’d be totally blue-collar, but we find that we
do anything from plumbing manufacturers to
banks,” she says. “It’s not very segmented; we
find we do it for many types of businesses, and
a lot of associations, such as the Teamsters and
Alcoholics Anonymous.”
On the flip side, debossed bracelets (which
are attractive in part due to their low price
point) appeal to the other side of the spectrum
– for example, organizations that want to offer
inexpensive giveaways at charitable functions.
“In other words, the channel may be narrow,
but at the same time, the application and messaging can be broad,” Grant says. “There are a
wide variety of buyers. I would say the middlelevel businesses would be less included to purchase products that exhibit these two application types.” Q
Shane Dale is a contributing writer for Wearables.
Hollywood just can’t seem to get enough of
embossed and debossed apparel.
Maryann Castillo, executive vice president
of Tyca Corp (asi/92370), which specializes in
embossed denim jackets, just put together
an order of over 200 embossed denim “wrap
jackets” for “Burn Notice,” a long-running TV
series on the USA network.
“When a TV show or movie ends, they provide all the cast and crew with a wrap jacket,”
she says. “We used plain denim jackets and
embossed the show’s logo on the back. We
sold them through our promotional products
By the same token, Jonathan Walther,
operations manager for Burk’s Bay (asi/74600),
recently debossed 30 leather jackets for executives at one of the largest film production and
distribution companies in the world, Paramount
Pictures, via one of its Los Angeles-based distributors. The intricate Paramount logo, which
includes a depiction of a mountain and stars,
was featured in a ten-inch debossed look on
the back of the jackets.
Burk’s Bay can deboss a single jacket for
$8 to $15 (depending on the quantity of the
order), which provides plenty of room for a
markup. “They wound up using one of our
Napa Bomber jackets,” Walther says. “The net
price was $88 each.”
Paramount Pictures was one of many Hollywood players that went for leather jackets with large, debossed
logos on the back. The Napa Bomber jackets (1000)
are available from Burk’s Bay (asi/74600; circle 93 on
Free Info Card).
ASK AWAY. If you have a question, please e-mail
it to [email protected], with the subject line,
“Cheat Sheet.” • WEARABLES OCTOBER 2011 33