Patches 101: the Embroidered Patch

Patches 101: the Embroidered Patch

The embroidered patch is the grandaddy of patches — almost everyone thinks of this style when they think of a “patch,” and by some accounts it was the first. The embroidered patch checks all the boxes as the most versatile style we offer and is a classic jack-of-all-trades for any project. Still not sure what kind of patch you want after reading our rundown on all seven styles? Go to with embroidered.

The Advantages

•  Affordability — excepting “budget” styles that are designed with economy in mind, embroidered patches are the most affordable yet quality patch style available. They’re one the easiest to manufacture in large quantities.

•  Versatility —  on top of almost infinite colors, you also have glow in the dark or reflective threads to work from.  That’s not to mention custom color backings as well as camo, reflective or — you guessed it — glow in the dark.

From serious applications like civil services to more playful ones like sports or scouts, nearly any logo is possible. Plus, embroidered patches are compatible with any attachment method, meaning  velcro, basic iron-on, super iron-on adhesive and even magnets.

•  Texturing — embroidery naturally makes images look sharp and textured by how the threading goes with the “grain” of images. It helps letters jump off the backing, too.

•  Durability — embroidered patches can bend with elbows and don’t mind rain or snow. An embroidered perimeter, called merrowing, can help keep the design safe from scuffing.

•  Washable  — don’t be afraid to wash sports gear and uniforms with embroidered patches. Just make sure you’ve sown them on or had them made with an extra-strong iron-on adhesive.

•  Fast turnaround — great for last-minute projects due to the ease of manufacturing them.

The Disadvantages

•  Imprecise with small fonts — if you’re looking to make a word-heavy patch or one where minute details play a critical role, embroidery might be too “blurry.” You might want to look into woven patches which allow for greater threaded detail, or even printed patches for a more photorealistic amount of detail.

•  Not waterproof — while able to put up with rain and snow, embroidered patches are ultimately thread and shouldn’t be used in situations where they’ll be submerged often and could mold. They’ll also retain paint from paintball matches.  PVC patches, on the other hand, can go swimming and paintballing all day long with no permanent effects.

The Takeaway

While there are patches definitely more suited for things like fashion, rugged weather conditions or other specific scenarios, nothing matches the raw all-purposeness of the embroidered patch. Ready to go with any color, on any surface and into nearly any situation, they’re the perfect light-weight and cost-effecive solution to the majority of patch projects.


Whether you want just one or one thousand, The/Studio is the premier destination for custom embroidered patches. Check out our showroom and get a FREE quote or visit see what other patch styles we offer in our introductory lesson, The 7 Kinds of Patches


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