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Uses for a Heat Press

26th November 2013

Uses for a Heat Press

Collage_SwingEven though it might not seem like it at first glance,  a heat press is a very versatile piece of equipment.  While it’s true that all a heat press can do is heat up and press things,  the variety of  techniques for which it can be used may well make it one of the most valuable instruments in your shop.    Adding a heat press to your set-up can open up a whole host of opportunities for new markets and new sales.    If you’ve never considered adding a heat press to your shop before,  here are some uses for a heat press that may make you think again.

Use 1:  Sublimation – Dye sublimation is a process by which a special ink is printed on a special paper and then the transfer is heat pressed on a polyester garment or a poly coated substrate.  Sublimation offers you the ability to do more complicated designs on garments,  as well as widening the number of items you can offer to your customers.  If you’ve ever wanted to offer mousepads or coffee mugs or jewelry boxes,  then sublimation is the discipline for you.

Use 2:  Screenprint or plastisol transfers – Screenprint is a very popular decorating technique,  but it does have a learning curve,  and setting up a shop can be expensive.    Plastisol transfers allow you to offer screenprinted garments and items to your customers without having to do the screenprinting yourself.  All you need is a transfer,  an item to embellish,  and a heat press and you’re in business.

Use 3:  Vinyl –  This is another popular decoration technique that can be used on garments and other items.  Vinyl is often popular for the names and numbers on sports jerseys and team uniforms.   If you have a lot of school or sports league business available in your area,  vinyl may well be a great addition to your product offerings.

Use 4:  Rhinestones –  If bling is your thing,  then you’ll love rhinestone transfers.   A heat applied rhinestone transfer allows you to add sparkle to garments and other items without having to deal with the hassle of buying rhinestones and placing them yourself.

Use 5:  Decorated patches –  A blank patch,  embroidered or screenprinted by you,  can be heat sealed onto a garment,  backpack or other item.   Sublimated patches are a terrific way to make complicated designs with many colors simple.     If you have a design that won’t translate well into embroidery or screenprint,  put it on a sublimated patch and then heat seal it to the item to be decorated.    Your complicated design is now decorating the item of your choice with one easy press.

Finally,  if all else fails,  and you’re having a busy day at the shop,  you can always make a quick snack on your press.  Now,  we don’t recommend this option,  but it can be done and apparently,  the grilled cheese sandwich turns out quite tasty.

Clearly,  a heat press has many uses,  but some of you may still feel that a heat press isn’t right for your business.   Since it is the season of giving,  and since we are thankful for our customers and those who take an interest in EnMart,   we don’t want you to leave without a little something.    Use this coupon to take 5% off your order of $50 or more.  Happy Holidays!



posted in Garment Decoration, Making Your Business Grow, Patches/Emblems, Sublimation | Comments Off

8th December 2011

Blank Patch FAQ

One of the most popular items EnMart sells is blank patches,  which are manufactured by our parent company Ensign Emblem.    We offer our blank emblems in hundreds of color and size combinations,  and they are used for embroidery,  sublimation and screen printing.    A blank patch from EnMart is a versatile item,  but there are always questions to be asked about how to use them to the greatest benefit.  Today I thought I’d do a blank patch FAQ and answer some of the questions we get most often.

Q1.  How do I embroider a patch? – Instructions on how to embroider a single blank patch can be downloaded from our website.  If that is not enough information,  you can also give us a call and we’ll connect you to one of our embroidery experts who should be able to help.

Q2.  What are your patches made of? –  All patches sold by EnMart are made with 100% polyester fabric and 100% polyester merrow thread.   They are designed to withstand an industrial wash and dry.

Q3.  What can I do with your patches? – Blank patches can be used for embroidery and screen print.  Because they are 100% polyester,  they are also suitable for sublimation.

Q4.  How soon will my patch order ship? – As we’ve said in the past,  all blank patches from EnMart are made to order.   Most patch orders turn in two to three days.   Larger orders may take more time.    You also should take shipping time into account when planning your order.

Q5.  Where do your patches ship from? –  The majority of our blank patch orders ship from the Michigan facility.   On occasion, blank patches may ship from one of the other EnMart locations, but that is determined on a case by case basis.

Q6.  I need a specific size or shape and I can’t find it on your website,  what do I do? – The sizes and shapes of the blank patches on our website are the ones that are most popular.  If you need a size and can’t find it on the site,  give us a call.   We may have the size or shape you need.

Q7.  You offer two types of patch backing,  what’s the difference? –  Heat seal backing is designed to be sealed to a garment with a heat press.  It is high melt laminate,  and cannot be sealed successfully with an iron.   Sew on backing has no laminate and is designed to be sewn on the garment.   Heat seal patches can also be sewn on as well,  and the laminate will not melt if exposed to the temperatures of a standard wash and dry,  so if you’re unsure of whether or not you want to heat seal or sew on your patch,  heat seal backing is probably the better choice.

posted in Patches/Emblems | 1 Comment

20th December 2010

A Patch is Just a Patch (Or Is It?)

When it comes to blank patches,  a lot of people might think that one is much like another.   Some people might tell you that it doesn’t matter where the blank comes from because there isn’t that much variation in the materials and techniques used to create the patch.     We, obviously,  would beg to differ.

EnMart’s parent company has been making blank patches for 36 years.   In that time,  we’ve made a lot of patches for a very tough audience,  industrial laundries.    These laundries,  quite literally,  but the patches Ensign Emblem makes through the wringer,  and through an industrial wash and dry as well.   An average patch wouldn’t hold up under this environment.   The patches that Ensign makes and EnMart sells do.

Our blank patches are made with 100% polyester fabric,  which is durable,  colorfast and can be embroidered, screen printed or sublimated.   The merrow thread, used to create the colorful borders for the patches, is manufactured by Hilos Iris,  and is colorfast and washfast.   The heat seal backing on our patches is industrial strength,  so the patches bond with the fabric and stay where they’re put.   These patches are meant to last for the long haul,  not the short term.

EnMart’s patches are also perfect for whatever user you have for them.   The 100% polyester fabric makes them ideal for sublimation.   The variety of colors and sizes available makes it easy to coordinate patch and thread colors to create a pleasing embroidery patch.   Our blank patche sizes range from a tiny rocker,  to a huge back patch,  so you’re sure to find a size and shape that fits your needs.   Best of all,  you’ll get a blank patch with quality construction,  one that you can be sure will hold well to whatever is thrown at it.

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11th November 2010

The Best Way to Advertise a Business

I’m guessing when many of you read the title of this article your thoughts immediately went to a print ad, or a billboard, or even a listing in the yellow pages.  All those are good methods of advertising, and may be very useful in certain situations.  They are not, however, the best method available for advertising a business or a brand.  The best method of advertisement and branding, whether or not your customers know it, is the emblem that goes on the uniforms your customers’ employees wear.

Some people think that the value is in the uniform, not the emblem, but that’s simply not true.  A uniform is necessary, and serves as a means of making sure that all your customers’ employees are dressed alike, but a uniform isn’t unique.  If you dress 50 people up in plain navy uniforms without emblems, you simply have 50 people in identical uniforms.  There’s no way to tell if one person works at The Plant Haus, and another works at Cakes R Us.   They all look the same.

If you put an emblem on those fifty navy uniforms, identification becomes easy.  After all, the Plant House logo will be different than the logo from Cakes R Us.  An emblem helps your customer’s logo, and the uniform it adorns, stand out from the crowd.  It also turns employees into walking billboards, who are advertising the business for which they work every time they put on the company uniform.

Business owners work long and hard to create the logos and slogans that are used to advertise their businesses.  Many of them will also spend a lot of money on acquainting their customers with those logos and slogans.  What many of these business owners fail to realize is the best advertising their business could ever have is the emblem that goes on their company uniforms.  Luckily for those business owners, they have you, and your knowledge of the value an emblem can bring, in their corner.

You also have EnMart in your corner.  After you’ve sold your customers on the value an emblem can bring,  EnMart has all the supplies you need to create those emblems.  From blank patches, to the thread to embroider them,  to the adhesive backing needed to hold them in place in the hoop,  EnMart has all the supplies necessary for creating embroidered emblems.   If the logo is elaborate,  EnMart’s blank patches are 100% polyester and perfect for sublimation.  We also sell custom sublimated patches for those who don’t wish to do the work themselves.

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25th October 2010

Where Can You Sell a Patch?

Most people probably know by now that EnMart sells blank patches at very reasonable prices.  Our turn around times and size and color options are among the best in the industry and, unlike some other patch manufacturers,  our patches are 100% polyester, which makes them ideal for sublimation as well as embroidery.   Many people know about our patches,  but they may not be sure where they could sell those patches in their area.  Today I thought I’d make a few suggestions about places to find potential patch customers.

One group that is always in the market for patches is motorcycle clubs.   From patches identifying club members,  to patches commemorating a particular rally or ride,  motorcycle clubs can always find a use for a new patch.   These groups also tend to buy bigger patches,  and unique patch shapes like rockers.

Another good market for patches is day camps or sleep away camps.  They may have a unique badge to commemorate each session of camp,  or they may offer a reward badge to campers who complete a specific task.    Almost any group or club connected with children may have a use for a unique or specific patch.

Any business that makes it a practice to identify its staff is also a good market for patches.   From mechanics to restaurant employees to security staff,  there are a wide variety of occupations that call for identification as part of their uniforms.  Whether it’s a name patch,   a badge that identifies their function,  or something that simply identifies the business for which the employee works,  local businesses are often great customers for patches,  and many will buy additional items as well.

Schools are another good place to find patch customers.   From the football team to the Glee Club to general school spirit,  schools are a great place to sell a wide variety of patches.   Students like to show their allegiance to their particular clubs or teams,  and schools like their students to show school spirit by decorating their jackets or backpacks with school related patches.

When looking at ways to sell patches,  you should also keep in mind that EnMart’s blank patches are 100% polyester which means they are not only ideal for embroidery, but for sublimation as well.   If you encounter a design that is too complicated or contains to many colors to be suitable for embroidery,  you always have the option, provided you have a sublimation system,  of sublimating the patches instead.    Buying blanks from EnMart not only is easy on your budget,  it also equips you with more decoration options and thus more avenues for selling the patches you create.

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12th August 2010

Blank Patches – Made to Order

I think, today,  we’ll start off with a fairy tale.

Once upon a time,  there was a magical warehouse filled with every size and color of blank patches you could imagine.  The shelves rose high into the air,  but the ceiling was always magically higher.  The warehouse expanded as new sizes and color combinations were added, and was always just exactly the right size.   The keepers of the inventory had a magic mirror that let them see exactly where each shape and color combination was in the warehouse,  and new size and color combinations were added quickly to the shelves by little elves who did nothing but stock inventory.    A crystal ball allowed for accurate forecasting of blank patch orders,  so that there was never too little and never too much of any size and color combination.   The warehouse was an enchanted place where all the blanks sat tidily on their shelves and the right size and color combination was always available when necessary.

While that story is a nice one,  it isn’t how things work outside of fairy tales.  In the real world, in order to keep costs down,  and to eliminate the need to have an entire warehouse just for blank patches,  EnMart makes our custom blank patches when an order is placed. At last count we sold blank patches in thousands of size and color combinations.   Just stocking the possibilities for one size blank would take up shelves and shelves of space.    Making our blank emblems to order allows us to provide the best product to our customers while still offering an economical price.

This means that, when you place an order for blank patches,  you should allow one to two days for manufacturing time in addition to transit time after the order is shipped.   Our turnaround time is one of the fastest in the industry,  and the additional time for the blanks to be made is usually quite short,  unless the order being placed is for a large amount.  In those cases,  turnaround times will be longer.

If you have any questions about turnaround times or our blanks patches,  you can feel free to contact us at any time.   We will be happy to advise you about production schedules,  potential turn time for your order and how best to ship the order to get it to you in the time frame in which it is needed.

As always,  our goal is to provide the best product possible to our customers at a reasonable price.  For now,  until we get a magical warehouse and some inventory stocking elves,  making blanks to order is the best way we can find to do just that.

posted in Patches/Emblems | 2 Comments

28th July 2010

Why Buy Sublimated Patches?

I’m sure most of you are familiar with our blank patches,  but you may not be as familiar with our custom sublimated patches.   Today I wanted to take a minute to explain what our sublimated patches are,  and how they can be useful to your business.

First,  let’s talk about what a sublimated patch is exactly.   Those of you who read our other blog,  SubliStuff, should already be familiar with sublimation.   If you’re not familiar with the process,  sublimation requires the use of special ink to print transfers.  The transfers are then pressed onto polyester fabric,  and the composition of the ink is such that it turns to a gas and dyes the fabric.  The result is a colorful print that washes well and retains its color.    When the sublimation process is applied to a 100% polyester patch,  you get a colorful patch that lasts and lasts.

Sublimated patches are a great alternative for anyone who wants to put an intricate design on a patch.  As anyone who embroiders already knows,  designs with small letters or lots of detail often do not embroider well.   Sublimation allows you to print designs with small details and intricate lettering  while ensuring that the details will show crisp and clear on the finished product.  Buying sublimated patches from EnMart also means that you have a wide variety of patch sizes and shapes from which to choose.    Whether you’re looking for circles, squares or rectangles,  or if you need something like a shield or a diamond shape,  we can provide the shape you need in a variety of different sizes.

EnMart’s custom sublimated patches are also cost effective.    It is relatively inexpensive to create a colorful patch that is also durable.  Sublimation also means that there is no limit on the colors that can be put on the patch or in the detail that the patch design encompasses.    EnMart also offers quantity breaks on our sublimated patches,  so the more patches you purchase,  the more money you save.

Last, but not least,  EnMart has experience in creating these patches.  Our parent company has been working with sublimation since 2001.  Since then we’ve created hundreds of thousands of sublimated patches for all kinds of companies and with all kinds of designs.   We’ve had time to perfect our process and our patch quality,  while also discovering ways to create patches quickly.  This means our turnaround time is measure in days rather than weeks.   Of course the turnaround time will depend on the number of patches ordered and our production schedule but, overall,  we can generally turn around orders in less than 5 business days.

If you would like to learn more about our sublimated patches,  or to request a sample,  please contact us.   We’ll be glad to help.

posted in Patches/Emblems | 2 Comments

27th May 2010

Patches, Patches and More Patches

Lately there seems to be a bit of confusion about the different types of patches that EnMart offers.  I thought today would be a good day to try and clear some of that confusion up.

Our most popular patch is our blank patch.   Our blank patches come in standard colors,  which is white fabric with one of seven standard merrow colors,  and in custom colors.   The custom color option makes available a variety of fabric and merrow colors,  and costs slightly more than the standard option.   Blank patches are available in a wide variety of shapes and sizes and must be ordered in multiples of ten per size and color combination.  EnMart creates all the blank patches we sell when they are ordered, so turn around time is generally 1 to 2 days.  Orders of hundreds of blanks  may have a longer production schedule.

EnMart also offers custom  sublimated patches.   These patches  are also offered in a variety of sizes and merrow colors,  but come only with white fabric.  Sublimated patches offer an economical and efficient method of creating full color patches digitally and permanently dyed with any text, artwork, photograph, or design you choose.   Our custom sublimated patches can be shipped in as little as 48 hours after order placement.   Please keep in mind,  these are not blank patches.  They will have a design on them based on artwork provided by you,  the customer.

Finally,  EnMart offers our embroidered American Flag Patches.   These patches are a great way to show your allegiance to and affection for the American flag.  Our high quality embroidered American flag patches are made of 100% polyester embroidery thread and  100% polyester fabric.  They also have a high melt polyurethane backing for heat sealing onto garments using a heat press, or can be sewn onto the garments if that is preferred. Durable, tough, and attractive, these embroidered flag patches are sure to enhance any garment or item they are applied to.

If you are ordering patches please keep in mind that we have a large variety of sizes and shapes available,  far too many to put on our website.  If you  don’t see a size or shape you want when you visit our website,  please contact us.   It is likely we’ll have the size and shape you need.

posted in Patches/Emblems | 1 Comment

26th October 2009

Sublimated Patches

sublimated-patchesMany of you probably already know that EnMart sells blank patches, but you may not be aware of our sublimated patches.  Today I wanted to tell you a bit about those patches and why we sell them.

The sublimated patches we offer are made, like our blank patches, by our parent company Ensign Emblem.   These patches are designed to withstand the rigors of an industrial laundry, so they’re sure to hold up under whatever wash cycle your customers put them through.   These patches are so durable there is a chance they’ll last longer than the garment will.  If you have corporate clients who are looking for a colorful and durable way to advertise their businesses, sublimated patches are the perfect solution.

EnMart’s sublimated patches are known as PrintMate Emblems, and are an economical and colorful solution for garment identification.   Our sublimation process is an efficient method of creating full color patches digitally and permanently dyed with any text, artwork, photograph, or design you choose.  The patches are “photo-realistic”  which means we can accurately reproduce photo quality artwork and can create patches with extraordinary detail.  If you have an intricate design you wish to put on a patch, PrintMate emblem will suit your needs perfectly.

EnMart’s PrintMate emblems are created to the exacting standards set for all EnMart’s products.  The fabric of the patches is 100% polyester, the merrow thread used is Iris Merrow Thread, which has been tested to industrial wash standards, and is extremely colorfast and durable.  Our sublimation ink is made by Sawgrass and creates sharp, true colors. If you’re looking for an economical way to offer your customers full color, photo realistic patches, PrintMate emblems are you best choice.   To learn more about this products, call us at 866-516-1300 or visit our website.

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