Select a strong, but sheer stabilizer. Polymesh, fusible or non-fusible, is perfect for polo shirts. Use a beige polymesh on white knits to eliminate stabilizer show-through. Polymesh is also very comfortable next to the skin in comparison to a rough, itchy, heavy cut-away. If decorating a knit pique, use a lightweight tear-away on top of the fabric to provide a crisp, clean edge to the embroidery.
Stitch a sample of the intended fabric, embroidery design, stabilizer and thread. Our friends at OESD say, “There are only two kinds of embroiderers, those who test and those who wish they did.” Well said!
Since that’s the traditional route for menswear, let’s not overlook today’s contemporary styles of embroidered menswear. The young guys are way bolder than their older counterparts. They’re not afraid to flaunt large – really large – embroidery designs splashed asymmetrically down a shirt front. Often, these same designs cross over the side seam so they are visible from the front and back. They do tend to tread softly when it comes to color. They opt for monochromatic looks in soft, muted shades of gray, cream, brown and even purple (think smoky plum). Often, the shirts are a narrow stripe or small print. The scale works perfectly with the large designs.
And it’s creeping up the age bracket. Take a look at Tommy Bahama® – their camp shirts are emblazoned with 10” or larger designs. That brand is definitely geared to the Baby Boomer guy. You know the one; he just can’t help himself from swaying to the music whenever a favorite Beach Boys’ tune blares.