Embroidery Vs DTG Printing | Know the Differences

Many people still get confused between embroidery and DTG printing. This article will try to identify the differences between both and will make those easily understandable.

Embroidery and DirectToGarment (DTG) printing are two popular methods for decorating garments, but there are some key differences between them. Embroidery is a centuriesold craft that uses a needle and thread to sew intricate designs onto fabric. This method is great for creating intricate and detailed designs and is often used for corporate apparel and uniforms. DTG printing is a newer technology that uses specialized printers to print designs directly onto fabric. This method is great for creating highquality, fullcolor prints, and is often used for tshirts and other casual apparel.

What is Embroidery?

Embroidery is the art of decorating fabric with decorative stitches. It is often used to enhance clothing, bedding, and more. Examples of embroidery include adding decorative stitching to a shirt, adding a design to a quilt, or adding a name to a hat. Embroidery can be done by machine or by hand. Hand embroidery is often a traditional form of embroidery, while machine embroidery is used when larger designs are needed or the desired look is faster.


  • Embroidery is a very durable form of decoration as the stitches are applied to a base material. This ensures that the design will not fade or wear away over time.
  • An embroidery is a form of decoration that is often used to create a professional look. It is often used to add a logo, an individuals name, or other types of branding to a garment.
  • In terms of versatility, it can be used on a variety of different materials, such as cotton, denim, and even leather.
  • Embroidery can be used to add a personal touch to a garment or item. It is a great way to create customized items for special occasions or gifts.
  • Embroidery is a cost-effective way to create professional-looking designs. It is often cheaper than other methods of decoration, such as screen printing.


  • Embroidery is a very timeconsuming process and requires a great deal of skill and patience. It can take hours to complete a single design and can be quite expensive if you are not experienced in this type of decoration.
  • Limited Colors: Embroidery is limited to a certain number of colors, which can make it difficult to reproduce complex designs.
  • Embroidery requires a large amount of setup work and can be quite expensive if you are not experienced in this type of decoration.

What is DTG Printing?

DTG (Direct to Garment) printing is a printing method used to create fullcolor images and designs directly on garments. It involves using inkjet technology to print directly onto fabric with special waterbased inks. It‘s a great option for printing vibrant colors and complex designs onto tshirts, hoodies, and other apparel. Examples of DTG printing include printing a company logo onto a tshirt, printing a photograph onto a hoodie, or creating a custom design onto a tank top.

The DTG (directtogarment) printing market is one of the most rapidly growing digital printing markets. According to a study by Allied Market Research, the global DTG printing market is expected to reach $2.22 billion by 2027, with a compound annual growth rate of 8.7%.

This growth is driven by several factors. For example, DTG printers provide a more efficient, costeffective way to print garments compared to traditional printing methods. Additionally, DTG printing provides a higher degree of accuracy and detail, which helps businesses produce highquality garments quickly and easily. Furthermore, the increasing demand for personalized and customprinted apparel is driving the growth of the DTG printing market.

The growing popularity of ecommerce is also contributing to the growth of the DTG printing market. Companies are increasingly relying on ecommerce to reach customers, which has led to an increase in demand for customized and personalized apparel. As a result, DTG printers are becoming a popular choice for businesses to fulfill this demand.

For example, the introduction of DTG printers with larger print areas has allowed businesses to print more garments in less time, which has increased efficiency and productivity. Additionally, advancements in ink technology, such as waterbased inks, have allowed businesses to produce garments with a wider range of colors and sharper details.


  • DTG printing is more cost effective than screen printing, especially when producing lowquantity orders. The cost of each garment is significantly lower and you dont have to invest in screens or other materials.
  • It offers a wider variety of colors and designs than traditional screen printing, allowing for more creativity and customization.
  • It is much faster than other printing methods and can produce a fullcolor print in a matter of minutes. This makes it ideal for rush orders or lastminute projects.
  • DTG printing is ideal for printing on a variety of fabrics and materials, including cotton, polyester, and even leather. It can also be used to print on items such as hats, bags, and totes.
  • DTG printing produces highquality prints with vibrant colors and sharp details.


  • DTG printing is more expensive than traditional screen printing, especially when producing highquantity orders.
  • DTG prints are not as durable as traditional screen prints and can fade over time or when exposed to the elements.
  • DTG printing requires more time to set up than other printing methods, which can slow down the printing process.
  • DTG prints can be inconsistent, with some prints appearing blurry or pixelated.
  • DTG printing has a limited color range and cannot produce all colors.

Embroidery Vs DTG Printing

The Differences between Embroidery & DTG Printing

Here are the main differences between DTG printing and embroidery

Embroidery DTG Printing
Method Embroidery is a traditional method of decorating fabric with a needle and thread while DTG (Direct to Garment) printing is a digital printing process that prints directly onto fabric using specialized inkjet technology
Flexibility Embroidery is a more permanent method of decoration that is not easily changed once it is applied while DTG printing is a more flexible method and can be easily changed or removed
Cost Embroidery is more costly due to the labor-intensive nature of the process DTG printing is less expensive and can produce larger quantities of product faster
Consumables Embroidery uses a variety of threads and fabrics DTG printing only uses inkjet inks and specific fabrics
Appearacne Embroidery creates a more luxurious, sophisticated, and professional look DTG printing can create a more vibrant and colorful look
Cost of the Machine Embroidery machines are generally more expensive than DTG printers DTG printers are expensive
Per square feet cost the cost per square foot for embroidery is approximately $0.25 while the cost per square foot for DTG printing is approximately $0.03-$0.10
ROI Slow Faster due to increase in demand
Ease of Operation Embroidery machines are generally easier to operate than DTG printers due to the fact that embroidery machines are fully automated DTG printer would require expert and the operation still depends on the quality of consumables such as ink type

From the above differences, we can conclude that –

DTG (Direct To Garment) printers are digital printing machines that use inkjet technology to print designs directly onto garments. This type of printing is ideal for lowquantity printing jobs and offers a high level of detail and color accuracy. DTG printers are relatively easy to use and costeffective for smaller orders, and don‘t require a lot of setup time.

Embroidery machines use a combination of thread, fabric, and needles to create intricate designs and patterns. Unlike DTG printers, embroidery machines are more complex and require more setup time as each design must be programmed into the machine before production. Embroidery machines are ideal for largevolume orders, as they can run multiple orders at once and offer greater precision in detail than DTG printers.

For example, a company that specializes in custom tshirts may find that DTG printers are the better option for smallscale orders. The company may be able to print a single tshirt in just a few minutes, with a high level of detail and color accuracy. On the other hand, if the company wants to produce a large number of tshirts with the same design, an embroidery machine may be the better option as it can run multiple orders at once and offer greater precision in detail.

Let’s Conclude

In conclusion, DTG printers are ideal for lowquantity printing jobs with a high level of detail and color accuracy, while embroidery machines are more suitable for largevolume orders that require greater precision in detail. Both methods can be used to create custom tshirts, but the choice of which one to use ultimately depends on the size of the order and the desired level of detail.

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