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How to Create, Buy and Sell Custom Embroidered Sweatshirts - The Ultimate Guide (7 Tips)

How to Create, Buy and Sell Custom Embroidered Sweatshirts - The Ultimate Guide (7 Tips)

Taran Dobbins
9 minute read

When it comes to comfort that looks good, sweatshirts are a clothing option that keeps you snug and warm while looking great! That said, creating, buying, and selling custom embroidered sweatshirts can be challenging for those just starting out.

Sweatshirts vary in designs and fabrics, so creating your own custom embroidered sweatshirt can feel like unchartered territory. Similarly, for anyone new to the world of retail it can be challenging to know what aspects you need to keep an eye out for. 

Creating and selling custom sweatshirts isn’t rocket science, but there are a few aspects that you need to keep in mind. In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know when it comes to designing, buying, and selling custom embroidered sweatshirts for a profitable business model.

What Are Embroidered Sweatshirts?

Sweatshirts are long-sleeved pullovers made from cotton, wool, and polyester fabric blends. Generally speaking, the term sweatshirt covers a large variety of pullovers worn to keep warm, which includes hoodies, fleece jackets, and even performance sweatshirts. 

This apparel gained traction in the 1960s with universities designing their own sweatshirts to display college pride. Embroidered sweatshirts have gained popularity with brands and institutions, making use of them for branding and creating apparel merchandise. That said, if you’re an office administrator, why not check out our best corporate merchandise ideas?

Also read: Best Custom Embroidered Merchandise 


5 Types of Custom Sweatshirts

1. Hoodies

When it comes to comfort and staying cozy, hoodies are some of the best options out there. Hoodies, or as they’re otherwise known ‘hooded sweatshirts,” are, for the most part, worn for protection from cold weather conditions or even rain. Dating back to the 1930s for workers in cold warehouses, this clothing option is a no-brainer in terms of creating a custom embroidered sweatshirt. 

Hoodies, like this Bella Canvas Unisex Poly-Cotton one, are perfect for cool fall days, football games, and just hanging out at home! Custom hoodies add a unique touch to a great closet staple piece.

2. Crewneck Sweatshirts



Crew neck sweatshirts, like this Gildan DryBlend Crewneck Sweatshirt, look good to everyone and are comfortable, making them a great option for custom embroidery. These long-sleeved pullovers are usually fashioned from thick cotton or cotton-wool blends.

Created in the 1920s for football to keep warm yet comfortable, sweatshirts gained traction with colleges, using this apparel as a form of exhibiting school spirit and promoting their universities. Given the simplicity of the garment, their simplicity makes them an excellent choice for creating customized merchandise for corporate or even personal use.


3. Full Zip Sweatshirts



Full zip sweatshirts are a type of hoodie that comes with a zip utility to keep things practical. Much like regular hoodies or other sweatshirts, this apparel is usually created from some type of thick cotton, or cotton-wool blend fabric, ensuring its wearers stay comfortable and warm in cold weather conditions.

While there are several different types of sweatshirts on the market, full zip sweatshirts, like this Independent Trading Co. Full Zip Hoodie, are easy to remove when indoors, or when in warmer temperatures. Popularized by their use by factory workers working in cold weather conditions in warehouses, this type of apparel is a great option when it comes to creating simplistic custom embroidered sweatshirts for your brand or personal use.


Also read: How to Create Custom beanies with a logo


4. Performance Sweatshirts



While very similar to your typical hoodie, performance sweatshirts, like this J America Vintage Athletic Hoodie, are created from fabric that’s moisture-wicking to help its wearers during athletic activities and adverse weather conditions.

Performance unlike typical winter wear, or apparel, is advertised with its water-resistance or product features highlighted. If you’re looking for a versatile type of apparel to create your merchandise, performance sweatshirts are great options to work with.


5. Fleece Jackets


Fleece jackets are an excellent option when it comes to insulation from adverse weather conditions. Fleece jackets, unlike sweaters, are usually made from polyester-wool blends making them excellent for retaining heat and practical to use in colder weather conditions. While not as popular as hoodies, fleece jackets are an excellent choice for outdoor activities in colder climates.

6 Tips for Creating, Buying, and Selling Custom Embroidered Sweatshirts

1. Ways to Create Custom Embroidered Sweatshirts

When it comes to creating custom embroidered sweatshirts the most time-effective way to do it would be to contact a manufacturer or agency that specializes in customizing merchandise.

These days, creating embroidered merchandise is both easy and affordable with the use of embroidery machines that are capable of embroidering vector designs on fabric in a manner that is both time and cost-effective.

Whether you choose an overseas vendor or a domestic vendor depends entirely on your budget and time frame. That said, using domestic apparel customization agencies, like Underground Printing can save you significant time and money in logistics and quality assurance.

2. Choosing Your Fabric Blend

Choosing the best fabric for your custom embroidered sweatshirts depends entirely on your desired utility and the weather conditions of where the sweatshirts are to be sold or gifted. While sweatshirts for the most part make use of heavy cotton or cotton-wool blends, typically, sweatshirts are designed to keep their wearers warm and cozy, even in cold weather conditions.

That said, for areas that see more rainfall polyester-cotton blends or fabric is that water-wicking makes them more practical to use. However, the fabric you choose for your merchandise also depends on the budget and look you’re going for, so comparing prices and ordering samples before placing large orders is an excellent place to start.

If you’re not sure what kind of fabric would suit your design, visiting your favorite retailers to get a better idea of what blend suits you best can help you make an informed decision.

3. Selecting Your Color Scheme

Generally speaking, sticking to neutral colors, like white, black, beige, or gray ensures your jacket can go with a variety of color schemes. Other than this, implementing your brand colors in your embroidered design helps reinforce your brand image. 

If you’re looking for a new color scheme, however, picking pastel colors can be a refreshing route to take. That said, if you’re not sure where to start compiling a collection of images and color schemes based on images found online or creating a mood board can help you settle on a color scheme. For anyone looking to take the easy route, working with a color scheme generator can help ensure your design makes use of colors that are cohesive with each other. 

4. Working With A Designer or Software to Design Your Sweatshirt

If you’re looking to mass produce your merchandise, working with a designer can be a smart move to make. That said, for anyone producing a limited amount of merchandise, choosing websites that offer design or customization options should more than suffice. With websites, like Underground Printing users can even visualize a mock-up of their designs.

Quite often, most design software comes with a steep learning curve, so websites that allow you to create merchandise with an upload and a few clicks can make your design process a whole lot easier.

5. Sourcing Affordable Sweatshirt Options

When it comes to sourcing affordable sweatshirt options, making use of overseas vendors can be an affordable option. However, it’s worth keeping in mind that with overseas vendors there can be logistic issues, as well as, difficulty when it comes to quality assurance. 

If you’re looking to start out in a manner that is affordable, making use of domestic printing sites can help ensure quality and timely delivery. 


6. Selling Custom Embroidered Sweatshirts


For those looking to start a new venture, creating a dropshipping site that delivers merchandise on a per-order basis can help you significantly reduce your overhead costs.  Websites. like Underground Printing, enable dropshipping services for businesses ensuring both timely delivery and a quality product.

That said, if you're looking to raise funds quickly, opening stalls at events or concerts can ensure you quick on-the-spot sales. If you’re looking for a more long-term business model, however, creating a website and implementing PPC campaigns can help you maximize your conversion rates in the case where you create a website for an online store.

For those who are more old school, working with local vendors, or boutiques, that are willing to sell your merchandise for a commission can help you with sales.



Creating custom embroidered sweatshirts can seem daunting when you’re new to everything. On the whole, it often comes to the type of sweatshirt, the color scheme, and the design options you choose. When selling these sweatshirts, targeting specific seasons and individuals based on their search history is one way to go. 

Although there are several routes to take when it comes to creating your own custom embroidered sweatshirts, the manufacturing process depends entirely on your budget, flexibility, and industry knowledge. While it may seem cheaper to produce everything overseas, using domestic companies that have the infrastructure for quality assurance can save you both money and time in the long run. Did you find this article helpful? Let us know in the comments below.



What is the most affordable way to create custom embroidered sweatshirts?

Creating custom sweatshirts using online customization websites can reduce both the cost and effort of producing custom embroidered sweatshirts. In cases where you require limited merchandise for corporate or personal events, sites with easy-to-use interfaces can make your designing process a whole lot easier.

What is the most popular type of sweatshirt to create custom embroidered merchandise?

When it comes to the most popular type of merchandise, working with hoodies, or full-zip sweatshirts, are the more popular choices. 

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