Designing Tips for Custom Embroidered Patches

In making a patch, you do not have to be an experienced artist or designer. Just consider these ten tips in designing that custom embroidered patch.

1. Concept

In making a patch, you must consider its purpose. Ask yourself what the patch is for. It is always better to start something with an idea or concept in mind. The idea may focus on an event that you want to be remembered, a theme or a brand’s name. A patch with a good design can turn an idea into a clear, well-formed graphics. Some artists and manufacturers can make patches from photographs, sketch and even text descriptions. If you ask the manufacturer to design the patch, the service is usually for free as long as the production is done with them. If you will not as help from the producer, you can still create your own design. It would be better if the design will be drawn on a paper with the same size of the patch that you want. In this way, the manufacturer will be able to visualize the overall layout of your design. Correction and sizing will be made easier.

2. Patch Design

PatchesSimplicity makes beautiful art for your patch. Do not overcrowd the patch by placing too many details on it. You just have to make sure that your idea is well stated in the patch. If you have a logo or any illustration that you want to be embroidered, make sure to give a sketch, photo or sample patch so the details will be copied well. If you cannot draw or make your own designing, just describe your idea to the manufacturer and they will be the one to make it for you.

3. Patch Shape

There is a variety of patch shapes to choose from. Shapes may vary from square, circle, triangle, rectangle, oval or even hearts, diamond and octagon. There are also different shield shapes to choose from. Shield shapes are the common forms used for military patches. Shapes are not limited. However, you must still check the forms being offered by your manufacturer. The design should always fit the shape and size of your patch. Lasers and hot and die cutting processes turns patches into different shapes. The center part of the patch can also be cut out to add more details in the design.

4. Backing

Backing is used to support the patch that is why it is required to choose one. There are 5 types of backing namely plastic, heat seal, Velcro, adhesive and even magnetic.Plastic backing adds more stiffness. This helps keep the patch’s shape for a long time.


Heatseal is another term used for iron-on. This type of backing needs the use of home iron to attach the patch into the garment. This backing will not stick into nylon or synthetic fabrics. Though it uses home iron to stick into the fabric, sewing is still recommended after.


Velcro backing can be used on one or both sides depending on your preference.


This kind of backing is only used for a single event. It will stick and hold your patch for a short time. It is not recommended for machine washed clothes as it sticks only temporarily.


This type occupies the entire back portion of the patch. It will turn the patch into an embroidered magnet.

5. Border

There are two types of borders namely merrowed and die-cut.Merrowed border is the most commonly used. The edge of the entire patch is wrapped. This is used for simple shapes.Die-cut border is used for custom shapes as it has many in-cuts and sharp angles.Remember to choose the border that is most appropriate for the design of your patch.

6. Size

The size of patches depends on where you will use it. Do not forget to measure the placement of the patch. This will make sure that the patch will fit into its location. The next thing that you have to consider is the art and texts that you need to fit in the patch. The more details, the larger the patch will be. Many patch manufacturers offer sales and discounts depending on the size.

7. Lettering

The size of the letter should be at least 1/4 inches tall. This is to ensure clarity and sharpness of letters. Letter colors and styles are also factors that affect legibility.

8. Choosing the Colors

If you use light colors for the letters and art details, a dark colored background is suggested. When using dark colors for letters and details, the background should be light colored. Colors may be chosen using the Pantone Matching System.

9. Embroidery Percentage

If there is an unstitched part, it means the embroidery coverage is less than 100%. This option is cheaper. If you want 100% embroidery coverage, it means the thread will completely be used to cover the entire patch. This percentage will result to thicker and fuller patch.

10. Costing

Most manufacturers based their prices on the size, design and embroidery coverage. The simpler and lesser the thread used, the cheaper the price. It is important to consider your budget allowance in customizing your embroidered patch.