Stitches Archive: May 2014
View Digital Issue (Best Viewed In Chrome)

Regional Analysis

In this section, you’ll find important information that will help you better understand and capitalize on trends in your geographic area. From sales forecasts to social media, here are current loca...
Read More

Top 25 Apparel Suppliers

The 2014 edition of Stitches’ exclusive ranking of the suppliers with the most industry revenue last year.
Read More

Long-Time Barudan Sales Rep Passes Away

The embroidery industry lost a well-loved professional recently when Steve Firman, territory sales representative for Barudan America, died following a short illness. An industry veteran with 24...
Read More

GroupeStahl Announces Partnership With Wild Side

GroupeSTAHL has entered into a joint venture with The Wild Side, a stock and custom manufacturer of plastisol transfers. The international parent organization of more than 20 companies,...
Read More

Industry Reacts to BEL USA, Branders Deal

The announcement of BEL USA's merger with promotional products distributor Branders.com (asi/145021) has generated a wide range of opinions among advertising specialty industry executives, as...
Read More

Small Businesses Investing More in Social Media

From large contract shops to home-based embroiderers, apparel decorators are increasingly using social media to attract and connect with clients. In so doing, decorators are part of a much...
Read More

Lac Seul Fabric Art

Patricia Ningewance is known for her books on Ojibwe, an indigenous Algonquin language spoken by native peoples in parts of Canada. But the writer and linguist from the Lac Seul First Nation in...
Read More

Embroidered Book Covers

Bibliophile Anthony Tedeschi is on a mission to raise awareness about rare book collections in Australasia. In so doing, the deputy curator for special collections for the University of Melbourne...
Read More

Summit Spotlights China's Stitchwork Tradition

Embroidery aficionados from around the world recently flocked to China for a summit and exhibition of traditional stitchwork produced in the Asian nation. Held at the Guangdong Museum in...
Read More

Selling Via Social Media

When it comes to using social media for business, the oft-repeated advice of experts is to eschew direct-sell pitches. You're instructed to provide content that interests, entertains, informs or...
Read More

Create a Screen-Printed Slogan

Chicago-based Culture Studio Custom Screen Printing & Embroidery (asi/700559) is printing lots of simple slogan T-shirts, a hot throw-back trend. “Slogan/text-style imprints are usually spot color,...
Read More

Tricky Fabrics Need Special Treatment

Nylon rain ponchos and performance-poly fabrics are great for outdoor sports, but are sensitive materials that present special decorating challenges. Graphic Solutions Group takes on these tough...
Read More

Stylish Lettering Made Easy

Pump up your lettering by adding contrast and sparkle. Dalco Athletic offers heat-applied precut lettering with a bit of jazz. The new Slice lettering option achieves a two-color look with Yikes...
Read More

All-Year-Round Holiday Sales

Throughout the year there are seasons, holidays and events that provide excellent opportunities for a decorated apparel shop to maximize sales. Transfer Express' (asi/91804) new Decorating...
Read More

Reduce Needle Wobble by 60%

New from Tajima is the TMAR-KC, a multihead automatic embroidery machine that is designed to make it easier to sew on a wide range of fabric types and thicknesses for challenging or specialty...
Read More

Product Pick

Stahls' ID Direct (asi/88984) released a new printable heat-transfer material - Stahls' CAD-COLOR SuperTEK Opaque. Designed for sportswear and performance apparel, this lightweight, stretchable...
Read More

Easier Heat Printing

Minimize downtime with the Hotronix Fusion, which is designed to make heat printing more efficient, since the user can choose between swing-away or draw-style operation. Designed with 360°...
Read More

Split Designs Simplified

Floriani Commercial released a new version of its Floriani Total Control Commercial embroidery software. This free update, version 7.25, has the ability to split designs. This feature splits a...
Read More

Digitizing for Knits

Get to know the substrate. The construction is of interlocking yarns literally machine-knitted to form a seemingly solid surface, but when magnified, its vulnerability is obvious. There...
Read More

New York Fashion Week

New York Fashion Week’s fall 2014 runways were a showcase of fur, texture and opulence. Embellishments were all about shine, whether it was metallic threads, sparkling jewels or glittering fringe. ...
Read More

Athletic Designs

Sporty apparel that integrates an athletic aesthetic with the latest in activewear fabric - think neoprene, latex and mesh - is hot for 2014. Designers like Tommy Hilfiger, Roland Mouret and...
Read More

Canary Yellow

Brilliant and nearly fluorescent, canary yellow is a literal standout. The latest designs by Ralph Lauren and Prada give this super hue major kudos this season, and you'll definitely see it...
Read More

Showcase: Polo Shirts

The polo continues to be where it's at. "Polos have a great niche in the apparel world," says Heather Brunner, marketing manager at Charles River Apparel (asi/44620). "They're more upscale than...
Read More

Niche: Wedding Apparel and Accessories

For many decorators, personalized wedding apparel and accessories is a lucrative niche. From matching tanks for the bridal party to wear at the bachelorette party, to personalized wedding veils,...
Read More

Inspiration: Marta Brysha

Marta Brysha first learned the craft of embroidery from her grandmother, who lived in the Croatian countryside. "She did the most exquisite hand embroideries," Brysha says. "She never worked with...
Read More

Lease New Decorating Equipment

Thinking about leasing apparel decorating equipment to expand your shop's offerings? Keep the following in mind. The benefits: With leasing, you don't have to lay out a hefty lump sum to buy...
Read More

Retool Your Management Style

Poor management can drown a decorating shop, so improve your managerial execution by doing the following: 1. HIRE WISELY. Without the right employees, the best managing techniques will fall...
Read More

Optimize Images on Social Media

It's easier than ever for decorators to photograph and share visuals of their work. The easy-to-use camera technology built into smartphones along with the explosion of image-sharing sites like...
Read More

Hot Niches to Target

As the economy continues to mend, a handful of markets present burgeoning opportunities for decorators. Here are three to target. CHARTER SCHOOLS: These educational institutions have seen a...
Read More

Fresh Ways to Engage Customers

As the online landscape grows more crowded, decorators need to get more creative and effective to really engage their prospects and customers. Here are four ways to catch a Web browser’s attention.
Read More

Three Ways to Grow Your Sales in 2014

Try one of these tips to ramp up your sales this year. 1. Diversify. Ask your current customers: "What else are you doing?" Then, offer them services to help with that. It's a strategy...
Read More

Make Better Sales Presentations

Power your sales presentations to new heights of success with these business-building tips. 1. UNDERSTAND YOUR PROSPECT. A great presentation begins before you step into the conference...
Read More

Improve Long-Term Customer Retention

Just because you're hot on the trail of your next big client doesn't mean you can afford to let current customers fall by the wayside. Here are some quick tips to help keep your regulars happy....
Read More

Step Up Your SEO Smarts

A whopping 97% of consumers search for local businesses online, according to Google. Given that reality, the importance of ranking high in online searches that relate to your business is...
Read More

Automate Your Shop's Workflow

The more streamlined your shop's operation is, the more efficient, productive and potentially profitable you can be. Arranging your shop's physical layout to optimize the speed with which an...
Read More

Invest in an Online Designer

Growing ever more popular, online apparel design tools empower clients to create stitchable and imprintable logos and graphics on a decorator's website - and to then order the wearables on the...
Read More

Ask an Expert

My staff and I find ourselves on the road more these days – whether we’re visiting clients or at a trade show. We just invested in smartphones and tablets for our staff, and want to know what apps ...
Read More