Top Tips for Using Direct-to-Film Transfers

Decorators love direct-to-film – or DTF – transfers for lots of reasons, including unlimited color options, the ability to print gradients and shading, and rendering fine details with no outline. These full-color transfers, which blend into your t-shirt fabric, are great for small runs and web store orders. DTF transfers are a great option for new and veteran decorators – who might also offer screen printing, DTG printing and embroidery.  If you’ve been wondering if you should jump into DTF, check out everything you need to know about right here.

“DTF transfers fill the gap for businesses that want to do one-off items or short runs in a full-color print,” says Becky Kotzer, owner 605 Customize DTF Transfers. “They’re great for someone starting out, since they can order a small quantity of designs and can get their business going with very minimal startup.”  

These vibrant, full-color transfers have been a great addition to The Visual Identity Vault’s offerings. “DTF has enabled us to offer web stores with full-color designs,” says Tanya Doyscher, owner and graphic designer. “The designs can be ever-changing, which buyers love. We never have to keep an inventory of printed items or screen-printed transfers.” In fact, Doyscher nearly enjoys a POD scenario, as her team usually orders weekly.


First Things First

For those who aren’t familiar with the process, DTF transfers are images that get printed on a film transfer with a special direct-to-film printer. A heat press is used to adhere the design onto the t-shirt. Unlike direct-to-garment printing that only works with cotton fabrics, DTF transfers work on a variety of fabrics including cotton, polyester, 50/50 blends, synthetics like rayon, treated leather and even silk. DTF transfers also work equally well on both light and dark t-shirts, unlike some other printing methods.

Decorators love direct-to-film transfers for lots of reasons, including unlimited color options, the ability to print gradients and shading, and rendering fine details with no outline. These full-color, lightweight transfers, which blend into the t-shirt fabric, are great for faster, small runs and web store orders. You can also press them at a lower temperature than other transfers, so you avoid “scorch marks” on the finished product.

Many decorators – newbies to veterans – opt to purchase full-color custom or stock transfers from a vendor when they’re starting out with DTF. It’s less complicated to send  artwork to a supplier who’ll then make and send ready-made film transfers that can be heat applied. 

Here are some other reasons that shop owners are flocking to DTF transfers:

  • You can print vibrant, full-color designs in unlimited shades.
  • You can achieve designs with defined edges, free-floating text and fine lines.
  • You can print almost any type of artwork onto your transfer paper.
  • You can simply print your design transfer, without needing to worry about making screens or separating your artwork. 
  • You don’t need to pretreat your garment.
  • You don’t need to weed your design, which saves time. 
  • You’re working with a cost-effective transfer method, especially for full-color runs of 35 pieces and under.


Pros and Cons of Direct-to-Film

Here’s a quick summary of the pros and drawbacks of direct-to-film transfers. It’s always smart to fully understand a decorating process like DTF before jumping in fully. 

Pros: DTF transfers give full-color, detailed prints on light and dark garments. Unlike other printing methods, these transfers can be applied to almost any fabric type, including cotton, rayon and synthetics like polyester. It’s relatively easy to apply transfers to garments, including difficult to decorate areas since you’re using a heat press to adhere the design. The prints, which are flexible and have a soft hand, hold up well through many washes. Many decorators report that applying the transfers is easier than other print methods, including direct-to-garment printing. The garment does not need to be pretreated or the design weeded before application.

“We’ve been able to offer multi- and full-color designs at a much lower price point with low to no minimums with DTF,” Doyscher says. “Our customers love getting a shirt print that feels and looks unique! Another win is using DTF on hats. The full-color print looks amazing on a hat – and is different from embroidery or a patch. It’s always great to have options.”

Cons: Some decorators say that the print quality and vibrancy may be less than what you can get with DTG or sublimation printing. The hand of the print, while soft, is more noticeable than a DTG or sublimation print. Plan to store the hot-melt adhesive powder at a cool temperature to maintain quality prints. There may also be a learning curve to creating DTF transfers if you’re new.


To Oursource Transfers or Not?

When Doyscher decided to add DTF to her shop’s offerings, she considered purchasing a DTF printer to create the transfers in-house. “Our issue was a lack of time to do the research and devote ourselves to learning the craft to make it worthwhile,” she says. Instead, she partnered with 605 Customize to do their transfers.

“DTF printing isn’t for the faint of heart,” Doyscher says. “Things like the location of your printer, weather and humidity levels are all things that can affect your results. Since DTF is a newer process and will continue to evolve, outsourcing transfers for now is a good business decision for us. Rather than investing money and time in a printer, it makes far more sense to have someone else print our transfers and we apply them in-house.”  

For her part, Kotzer decided to purchase a commercial DTF printer and started printing transfers for other small businesses. “This added an additional revenue stream to my retail custom shirt business,” she says. “On the retail business side, it’s allowed me to offer custom web stores for schools and groups. With owning the printer, I can print on demand and turn my own orders around faster.” 

Doyscher, who sources her transfers from 605 Customize, recommends seeking out an experienced DTF printer. “Unfortunately, there are a lot of fly-by-night shops that purchase printers and convert them with no research on the entire process,” she says. 

“These types of businesses can put your reputation at risk, because the transfers will most likely be faulty.”

Pro tip: If you’re interested in either purchasing a printer or outsourcing transfers to a vendor, first request samples of the resulting DTF transfers. “DTF isn’t plug and play,” Kotzer says. “There are many factors that go into a great transfer like inks being used and the temperature and humidity of the shop where they’re printed. It’s a good idea to outsource your transfers when you’re starting out.”   

Applying a Direct-to-Film Transfer to a T-shirt

Here are the six basic steps for creating a DTF transfer and applying it to a blank t-shirt.

1. Print your image on the DTF transfer film. Create the  artwork in your software. You’ll print your CMYK colors first, and then your white layer second. Some DTF printers do this in one pass, while others require you to run the print twice.

2. Apply your adhesive powder. Next, while the print is still wet, apply the adhesive powder uniformly over the film. Then, shake off any excess. This is the necessary glue that holds the print to your shirt fabric.

3. Process your adhesive. Now, cure your “powdered print” by hovering over it with your heat press at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for two minutes. You can also use a curing oven for this step.

4. Pretreat your shirt. This simply means preheating your t-shirt with your heat press for 15 seconds to remove any excess moisture. Let your shirt cool before placing the transfer on the fabric. Note: If you’ve purchased transfers from a vendor like 605 Customize, you’ll start with this step.

5. Transfer your design to your t-shirt. Place the transfer on your shirt, with the adhesive side down and image facing up. Press the t-shirt at between 284 and 325 degrees for 15 seconds with very firm pressure. The temperature and pressure you choose will depend on the transfer film you use, so follow the instructions your vendor supplies.

6. Remove the transfer. Let your shirt cool. Then perform a cold or warm peel, depending on your film instructions. A cold peel means that you must let your film cool completely before peeling it off. A warm peel means you can peel the paper off once it’s cooled down slightly.


Tips for Handling Direct-to-Film Transfers Like a Pro

Check out these four pro tips if you’re getting started with direct-to-film transfers in your shop:


  1. Make sure the order is right for DTF. “Look at the whole picture to decide if DTF transfers are right for your customer’s order,” Kotzer says. “If it’s an order of 400 items with a single-color design, DTF transfers aren’t right for the job. You should look at screen printing or screen-printed transfers.” A good rule of thumb is to go with screen-printed transfers for one- or two-color jobs over 75 pieces. “They’re just more cost effective at that point,” Kotzer says.

  1. Make sure your design is right for DTF. Doyscher points out that a common mistake decorators make is not putting enough “negative space” into their artwork to allow the shirt to breathe. “DTF has a soft hand, but if your design is a full shield, it’ll feel heavy and not at all breathable,” she says. The flip side of that is using effects that “glow” or bleed out. “With DTF, you’ll lose part of the effect because the adhesive or powder won’t stick to it.”

    3. Pre-press your shirts before applying the transfer. This is especially important if you live in a more humid area. “Your apparel items should be free from moisture,” says Kotzer, who pre-presses all of her items for five to 15 seconds. Heavyweight sweatshirts usually require more time than thinner t-shirts.  


  1. Invest in a good-quality heat press or two. “I recommend purchasing a high-quality heat press if you want to offer DTF,” Doyscher says, “for prepressing and ensuring a flawless application.”


  1. Understand how the process works to be more efficient. As you work through the application process, you’ll see how long it takes you to process one shirt – and where you can be more productive. One tip is to choose the peel type. If you choose a cold-peel transfer, you’ll need to wait longer to remove the transfer paper. “Right now, we’re testing film that will be warm peel, which speeds up the production process,” Kotzer says.


Amazing Wins With Direct-to-Film

The Visual Identity Vault stocks a web store for a year-round lake resort that likes to switch up their designs pretty often. “This client also prefers a lot of color and details in their t-shirt designs,” Doyscher says. “Instead of doing screens and storing them in my shop, or guessing at the number of screen-printed transfers to buy, DTF is the perfect choice for a client like this, as it allows us to fill their web store orders one at a time. The resort owner comes back time and time again as a satisfied, repeat customer.”

In Kotzer’s retail business, she’s able to turn shirt orders around in a snappy 24 hours for customers. “One business owner decided at the last minute that she wanted t-shirts for a holiday, and we made it happen.” At 605 Customize, she regularly helps small decorating businesses offer full-color design options and fulfill small order requests.


Get Started With Direct-to-Film Today

While Doyscher’s shop offers a pretty full spectrum of imprinting options in-house – including screen printing, embroidery, sublimation and screen-printed transfers – DTF simply added another in-demand option. “For a decorator just starting out, DTF transfers allow wonderful, full-color results without a huge upfront investment,” she says. 

If you’re deciding whether DTF is for you, here are a few initial steps to take:

  • Watch videos and tutorials about DTF transfers and how to apply them. Even better, visit another local shop that offers DTF to see the process first-hand and examine the final decorated product.
  • Locate a DTF transfer vendor with a good reputation. Ask your decorator colleagues or Facebook groups for recommendations. Then, place an order to see how quickly they can turn your transfers around, and if you’re happy with the quality.
  • Apply the DTF transfers. Try out the application process from beginning to end in your shop. See how quickly you can do it, and do a strict quality check to see if the process is ready for customer orders.
  • Start marketing your new service to clients. Choose one or two existing customers to offer the service to at first. If all goes well, get a testimonial and reveal your new services to the rest of your client base and, of course, new prospects.


11 Athleisure Trends to Sell This Season

While it used to be that everyone wore blazers and khakis to work, today we’re dressing to feel good about ourselves in comfortable, casual wear. This has led to the rise of athleisure, no longer a passing trend, but a here-to-stay lifestyle movement – with apparel that functions for daily activities, work, exercise and more. 

The global athleisure market size hit a cool $306.6 billion in 2021, and is forecasted to rocket to $662.6 billion by 2030. Part of the rapid growth of the athleisure segment is attributed to an increasing interest in sports and outdoor recreational activities. The yoga apparel product segment will likely expand at the fastest pace over the next eight years, as the enthusiasm for mind-body fitness continues to grow.

Top athleisure brands include Hanes Brands, Under Armour, Lululemon Athletica and Patagonia. It’s also expected there will be more buyer interest in the sustainable athleisure market, forecast to hit $117.4 billion in 2027 – made popular by younger consumers who want sustainable clothing manufactured using environmentally safe practices.

“It’s about learning your customer’s audience and supplying them with what they need and want,” says Andrew Gilliam, CEO of Crypto Boxers. “It’s about finding the issue and solving it for the buyer, who in turn becomes your long-term customer.”

So, What’s Athleisure?

Athleisure, which became even more popular during WFH, is comfortable and designed for sports and exercise, but also fashion-forward enough to wear for other activities. In other words, it’s clothing you can wear from day to night, to work, to the gym and even to evening functions if the style’s luxe enough. Athleisure collections include t-shirts, workout dresses, hoodies, pullovers, jackets, leggings, joggers, shorts and sneakers. Improved fabrications make this sportswear more versatile and appropriate for a wider array of occasions. 

Today’s athleisure looks are sleek, elevated, sporty and effortless: Imagine wearing yoga pants with a bulky hoodie and platform sneakers, or throwing on an oversized matching hoodie and joggers with chunky socks and loafers. End-users want to create personalized looks that express their individuality.  Many offerings are made from eco-friendly performance materials. 

“Think of today’s athleisure looks as going from the street to the gym, and back to the street,” says Roy Harper, designer at Ade Koya 1994 (@royharper4955). “When you need to change your look for effect with little effort to suit the occasion a three-piece ensemble gives you an edge. Try a mixture of an animal print and solid colored top and pants, accented with a jacket that pops. This look works when you come from that workout or if you’re just out and about, to make you a pretty hip standout.”

We’ve rounded up 11 trends in athleisure – from bright matching sets to cottagecore prints – that you should be selling now.


11 Athleisure Trends to Watch

Here are the top 11 trends we’re seeing in the athleisure space:

  1. Bright, matching sets: The enduring ’90s trend of matching tops and bottoms is still going strong. This season though, expect to see matched hoodies with joggers or shorts in brighter jewel tones, like purples and emeralds. 
  2. Half-zip pullovers: Street-style sportswear has been trending, so add half-zip pullovers to your list of styles to pitch to clients. 
  3. Unexpected necklines: You’ll see more nontraditional necks, like scoop necks, sweetheart necklines and one-shoulder shirt styles in athleisure collections.
  4. Workout onesies and exercise dresses: You’ll see “workout catsuits” that fit in the yoga studio, and then look great with an oversized hoodie post-workout. These catsuits also fit into this season’s dance-inspired trend, so don’t be surprised to see them paired with off-the-shoulder tops and leg warmers. Exercise dresses are also a thing, so that you can hit the gym and then the streets, looking equally fly. Abercrombie is one brand that’s released an exercise dress in lots of popular hues.
  5.  Textured fabrics: As in seasons past, you’ll notice ribbed fabrics, suede finishes, faux leather and other tactile surfaces that add to athleisure’s wide appeal. Extra points for a textured matching set!
  6. Interesting bottoms: Rather than a standard legging, yoga pant or jogger, you’ll probably see flare or split-leg pants that are perfect for work or special events.
  7. Cottagecore: We’re talking about prints that incorporate florals, greenery and other countryside-inspired elements.
  8. Eco-friendly fabrics and materials: As more and more consumers want to buy from sustainable apparel brands, you’ll see athleisure made from recycled materials and unused yarns. These materials usually translate easily into performance fabrics that take a print well.
  9. Athleisure accessories: Tech hats, other headwear and socks top the list of accessories that pair perfectly with an athleisure look. “Masks and bandanas have come into vogue due to the pandemic as a welcomed accessory,” Harper says. “Create these pieces with a cut-and-sew method in a luxury fabric or graphic print to complete a look.”
  10. Contrasting colors: You’ll see bold color combos, like subtle earthy hues paired with pastels. As more designers send athleisure down the runways, you’ll notice the unconventional color contrasts you can imitate with wholesale apparel.
  11. Layering: While layering can include an oversized hoodie over leggings, you’ll see more 2000s influences like shorts over leggings. You can also layer a vest in a contrasting color over a long-sleeve performance tee in another color.


How to Decorate Athleisure

A hallmark of many athleisure silhouettes is minimalistic, clean lines and a simple color palette, of one shade or color blocking. Many athleisure head-to-toe looks start with foundational black, gray, white or other neutral-toned pieces. Then, a pop of color or layer of color blocking adds interest and style to the look.

Right now, athleisure decoration and graphics follow that lead: simple and minimal. “We’re seeing designers lean toward minimalist designs and text-based statements, only because simple is best and the buyer’s now making their own outfits from multiple pieces,” Gilliam says


Who Wants Athleisure Styles?

The great news is that the market for athleisure styles has a large range. Here are a few types of buyers and end-users who want stylish activewear that performs.

People who want apparel that combines comfort and style- With remote work being the norm and the casualization of the workplace, athleisure is the perfect day-to-night apparel. Today’s athleisure styles meld comfort and fashion, so this apparel is appropriate for work meetings, sporty activities and even social gatherings. Companies can use branded athleisure apparel as part of new employee welcome programs, for holiday gifts and employee appreciation events. They can also stock these items in a corporate store to earn or for purchase.

 Who to pitch:

    • Health and wellness
    • Gyms and yoga studios 
    • Corporate stores
    • Team wear
    • Collegiate and sororities
    • Festivals and events
    • Fundraising

People who prioritize health & wellness- After the pandemic, 80% of adults across the U.S. said they intend to be more mindful about practicing self-care regularly. As people of all ages choose healthier lifestyles, exercise and mindfulness activities, many companies are promoting health and wellness programs. Logoed athleisure apparel is great as part of wellness program starter packages – and for milestones along the way to mark commitment to different wellness activities. If wellness program participants feel comfortable and confident in the apparel, they’ll wear it out and about to spread brand awareness.

Who to pitch:

    • Education 
    • Healthcare 
    • Gyms/yoga studios 
    • Athletic teams
    • Corporate wellness programs

People who are interested in upstyled performance items- We’ve watched luxury brands like Gucci and Stella McCartney enter the athleisure space. They design their own performance lines or collaborate with sportswear brands to launch capsule collections. If your clients are outfitting upscale events or providing swag, brand-name performance wear is an ideal option. “Luxe” athleisure is great for employee or client gifts.

Who to pitch:

    • Musicians
    • Entertainment
    • Influencers
    • Luxury apparel brands
    • Corporate gifts and stores

People who care about sustainability in their activewear- Many buyers and end-users want athleisure options from sustainable, ethical brands that use recycled materials. For example: t-shirts made from polyester spun from water bottles that would have ended up in landfills. Or, joggers made from organic cotton or other plant-based materials like bamboo or Tencel, which comes from eucalyptus. Earth-friendly athleisure that’s also stylish performance wear will be a big hit with companies and end-users who want to support environmentally friendly brands.

Who to pitch:

    • Food delivery and restaurants
    • Alternative energy companies
    • Outdoor lifestyle companies
    • Tech companies
    • Companies with a sustainable mission

“It’s really about finding the apparel that fits the end-user, and there are so many niches of people who’ll wear athleisure,” Gilliam says. “There’s plenty of room for you to find the right buyers, if you have the right products picked out for them.”


Our Top Picks for Gift-Giving Season

The holiday and gift-giving season has arrived, so it’s time to make it easy for your clients to choose their gifts for employees, partners and clients. That’s why we’re making it easier for you to build your gift recommendations by curating the best apparel and accessories gifts for brand-name lovers, environmentally conscious people, trendsetters, golfers, athletes and more, in one place. While the holiday season tops the most popular gift-giving occasions, don’t forget to present these gift ideas for customer appreciation and employee recruiting, appreciation and milestone events at other times. 


People love wearing more expensive, higher-perceived-value name-brand apparel. They might even love receiving it more, especially if they wouldn’t necessarily have splurged on the brand-name gear themselves. Brand-name apparel gifts are also a great investment for companies, since they can put their name or logo alongside a recognizable, well-loved retail brand especially when they’re iconic like Columbia or Under Armour. When you present your client with name-brand styles, be sure to share details about the retail names you’ve chosen.

Hot gift ideas:

1. Looking for a brand name that also delivers on the hot trends of the season? The Spyder Men’s Pelmo Puffer Vest (S16642) and companion ladies’ style (S16641) is the perfect choice for you. These puffer vests with their modern fit, sleek invisible zippers and three color options work for any outdoor occasion. When you shop Spyder, you’ll see that from mountain to metro, every piece is thoughtfully designed to be comfortable and functional, giving wearers the best experience outdoors and beyond. Made of 100% polyester nailhead weave fabric and with great features like detachable hoods and zippered hand warmer pockets, you’ll reach for these vests three seasons out of the year.

2. Prefer the sleek look of a fitted jacket? Then the Columbia Ladies’ Kruser Ridge Soft Shell (5343) and Columbia Men’s Ascender Soft Shell (C6044) styles are the way to go. Well-known at retail, Columbia Sportswear is a global outdoor brand that crafts active lifestyle gear fortified by industry-leading technologies and reflective of the brand’s Pacific Northwest heritage and indomitable spirit. These soft shells feature adjustable cuffs and a drawcord at the bottom hem, as well as a zippered chest pocket and zippered hand pockets for extra security. Made with a 100% polyester Nexegen contour bonded soft shell and a 100% polyester chamois touch tricot lining, water and wind won’t stand a chance against these jackets.

3. If you’re wishing for a high-performance, yet ultra-comfortable staple for chilly days, look no further than the Under Armour Men’s Hustle Fleece Crew (1302159) and the ladies’ companion style (1305784). Under Armour is a leading inventor, marketer and distributor of branded athletic performance apparel designed to empower human performance. Under Armour’s innovative products and experiences are engineered to make athletes perform even better. These sweat-wicking, fast-drying pullovers are made of midweight performance cotton with four-way stretch for better mobility. The brushed interior provides a luxuriously soft feel and added warmth. Available in three color options for women and four for men, the Hustle Fleece Crew is a great addition to anyone’s wardrobe. 

Who’ll love these gifts:

    • Tech companies
    • Energy companies
    • Insurance agencies
    • Consulting firms
    • Corporate offices


For the Environmentally Conscious

Thoughtfully purchasing eco-friendly apparel from sustainable brands as gifts will go a long way with your recipients. A whopping 72% of buyers actively purchase more environmentally friendly products than they did five years ago. More than 80% plan to buy even more over the next five years. There are lots of reasons people purchase sustainable products and brands: Nearly 30% want to improve the environment, with 23% wanting to reduce production waste and 22% wanting to reduce their carbon footprint. If you serve clients with sustainable brands, show them these gifts first.


Hot gift ideas:

1. Investing in great wardrobe basics is a must, and the Bella + Canvas Ladies’ Micro Ribbed Tank (1081) ticks all the boxes with the added bonus of being made in a sustainable and eco-friendly way. Your gift recipients would probably also love to know that Bella + Canvas uses sustainable manufacturing processes with Blue Sign certified dyes, efficient dye houses that adhere to the state of California’s EPA regulations around wastewater treatment and usage, and cutting facilities in Los Angeles that run on partial solar power with comprehensive recycling programs for paper waste and fabric scraps. Made of 52% Airlume combed and ringspun cotton, 48% polyester fleece and available in five colors, including multiple shades of heather, white and black, this super-soft piece will easily become a regular part of your wardrobe. You’ll probably grab more than one!

2. Fully embrace recycling with the North End Ladies’ Replay Recycled Polo (NE102W) and the men’s companion (NE102). Not only are these polos made from 100% recycled polyester, they’re also antimicrobial and moisture-wicking, and have built-in side vents, so you’ll feel comfortable all day long. Available in four colors, including Carbon and Opal Blue, with stylish metal snap closures, this polo is a great eco-friendly addition to any professional wardrobe.

3. Need an all-occasion jacket with sustainability at its core? The Spyder Men’s Powerglyde Jacket (S17920) and the ladies’ companion (S17921), with a filling made of 100% recycled polyester, might be just the right pick. Crafted with strategically placed baffles for added warmth without extra bulk, adjustable hood and hem cinch cords, as well as reflective tape for extra visibility from the back, this jacket is at home in the city and the great outdoors. With the added bonus of two internal drop pockets and secure zip pockets on the chest and back for extra storage, you’ll find yourself reaching for this jacket no matter where you’re headed.

4. Is a denim jacket more your vibe? Don’t worry, we have you covered with the Threadfast Apparel Unisex Sherpa-Lined Denim Jacket (372J). Best of all? The cozy sherpa and sleeve lining are made of 100% recycled polyester, which helps reduce water usage, energy consumption and CO2 emissions when producing this garment. This updated classic denim styling comes in both a light and a black denim and features a hidden decorator access zipper, and chest pockets with button flap. Threadfast is a proud member of the Better Cotton Initiative and cotton products from Threadfast support more sustainable cotton farming. Every Threadfast product contributes to the “Plant with Threadfast” program.

Who’ll love these gifts:

    • Automotive
    • Health and wellness
    • Tech companies
    • Food delivery and restaurants
    • Alternative energy companies
    • Outdoor lifestyle companies


For Golfers

Nearly 25 million people play golf on a course in the United States, according to the National Golf Foundation. Since so many people are obsessed with the game, golf apparel gifts are always welcome. Whether you give golf gear to avid players who live on the green, or to people attending your corporate golf event, they’re sure to welcome new duds for their next tee time.

Hot gift ideas:

1. Polos are a staple item in any golfer’s closet and the Puma Golf Men’s Icon Golf Polo (596799) and the ladies’ companion (596800) checks all the boxes. Made from 100% polyester, these polos are ultra-lightweight, moisture wicking and have four-way stretch for better mobility and performance. Available in six colors from Bright White to High Risk Red, all featuring a silicone Puma cat logo on the left sleeve, they’re a must have on the course. 

2. Could the golfer in your life use an extra layer for those brisk, early morning tee times? Then consider the Under Armour Men’s Command Quarter-Zip (1360712). Made with 100% polyester this loose-fitting outer layer offers complete comfort and features a dropped hem for enhanced coverage. Nylon overlays increase water and wind resistance for added durability and protection, while the polyester wicks sweat and is quick-drying, making this pullover ideal for the course. Available in Black/White, Midnight Navy/White, Mod Grey/White combinations and proudly displaying the Under Armour logo, this quarter-zip offers both style and comfort.

3. A good hat is a must have for those sunny days on the course, so as a gift, the Puma Golf P Snapback Golf Cap (22537) is really a no-brainer. Choose between Bright White, High Rise, Navy Blazer, or Quiet Shade, all featuring a 3-D embroidered “P” logo and a 2-D embroidered back cat logo, a reflective woven PUMA label, and PUMA branded seam tape. The 110 snapback is made of 95% polyester and 5% elastane, sports a slightly curved visor, and a must have moisture-wicking performance sweatband.

Who’ll love these gifts:

    • Tech companies
    • Energy companies
    • Insurance agencies
    • Consulting firms
    • Corporate offices
    • Golf courses and events 
    • Fundraising



For Trendsetters

You know who we’re talking about: People who follow fashion trends and love to wear them. If you work with up-to-the-minute brands, show them the latest styles they can put their logo on and gift to employees and clients. They’ll love the thoughtful gift that will have them taking that fashion-forward step into the new year.

Hot gift ideas:

1. Joggers are here to stay, and whether you’re a hardcore fan or new to the jogger trend you’ll love the Champion Unisex PowerBlend Fleece Jogger (P930) . Nothing has been overlooked on these super-soft, modern-cut sweatpants. Made of 50% cotton and 50% air-jet polyester, these bottoms feature ribbed cuffs, side pockets and a covered elastic waistband with dyed-to-match twill drawcord. A unisex fit makes them a great gift for anyone on your list, and they’re available in Black, Light Steel, and Navy with the “C” champion logo proudly displayed on the left hip. 

2. There’s nothing quite like pulling on your favorite hoodie. The best of both worlds, you get style and maximum comfort all in one and the Bella + Canvas Ladies’ Cropped Fleece Hoodie (B7502) is a super cute, modern take on a woman’s hoodie. Raw hems and a drop shoulder complete the ultra-popular cropped-top look. This hoodie is made of 52% Airlume combed and ring-spun cotton and 48% poly fleece, some of the softest materials available, and it comes in nine adorable colors.

3. For a more classic hoodie look, check out the Bella + Canvas Unisex Sponge Fleece DTM Full-Zip Hooded Sweatshirt (3759), available in six colors and featuring a full zipper, dyed to match the color of your chose as well as relaxed, set-in sleeves, and pouch pockets. 

4. Tie-dye is back and brighter than ever! These funky and diverse patterns are showing up all over the runways and retail racks. Don’t have any in your closet? The Tie-Dye Adult 5.4 oz., 100% Cotton T-Shirt (CD100) is a great place to start. Available in more than 60 color combinations and tie-dye designs there is something to fit everyone’s taste. No two are exactly alike, so they’re one of the best ways to express your individuality!

5. Hats are a great choice, since everyone can use one and you don’t need to worry about sizing. The Big Accessories Metal Eyelet Bucket Cap (BA534) is a trendy item for any fashion-forward person on your list. Available in two classic colors, black and white, these bucket hats are versatile and will add extra flair to any outfit. They’re made of 100% cotton and feature two metal eyelets on each side. 

Who’ll love these gifts:

    • Health and wellness
    • Gyms and yoga studios 
    • Corporate stores
    • Team wear
    • Collegiate and sororities
    • Festivals and events
    • Fundraising


 For Athletes 

Gifts that encourage employees or clients to work out or enjoy sports show you care about their health and wellness. Of course, new athletic apparel are great gift items for gyms or fitness-focused businesses. Schools and teams can also benefit from giving or stocking new athletic items for student athletes in their online stores for gift buyers.

Hot gift ideas:

1. Real talk: There are fewer things more fundamentally important to a good workout than the right sports bra. The TriDri Ladies’ Medium Impact Sports Bra (9TD920) is the perfect medium impact sports bra, made of 90% recycled polyester and 10% Elastane; it provides comfort and support you need to feel confident in any routine. This sleek black bra features an elasticated under bust, removable padded cups and a mesh and elastic back detailing.

2. As the weather gets colder layers become essential. The North End Unisex JAQ Stretch Performance Hoodie (NE105) offers added warmth without sacrificing performance. Soft to the touch, this hoodie is made of moisture-wicking and antimicrobial materials, including the fiber lyocell from Lenzing, a sustainably sourced, renewable and biodegradable botanic fiber. The style also has integrated thumbholes! Available in Black, Carbon, Classic Navy and Platinum, this is the perfect gift for any athlete in your life.

3. A comfortable and dependable pair of shorts is a must for any athlete. The Team 365 Men’s Zone Performance Short (TT11SH) and the ladies’ (TT11SHW) and youth companion (TT11SHY) are a perfect staple piece for the whole family. Made of 100% polyester, they’re moisture-wicking and have UV 40+ protection. Featuring side pockets and elasticated waistbands with a flat internal drawcord. Available in seven shades, they’re also a great choice for team uniforms!

4. Once you grab an A4 Cooling Performance Long Sleeve T-Shirt, available in men’s (N3165) , ladies’ (NW3002) and youth (NB3165) sizes, you won’t know how you trained without it. Made of 100% polyester interlock, these tees offer superior moisture-wicking for peak performance, and are easy to care for with stain-release and odor-resistant properties. Enhanced durability is achieved through Reinforced shoulder seams enhance the garment’s durability, and they’re fade and snag-resistant. Available in 32 colors, so there’s something for everyone. 

Who’ll love these gifts:

    • Education 
    • Healthcare 
    • Gyms 
    • Teams
    • Corporate Wellness Programs


For Winter Weather Aficionados

Spending time outdoors in the winter lifts your mood, boosts your immune system, helps you sleep better and promotes overall wellness. That’s why cold weather accessories like hats, scarves and gloves, which are often one-size-fits-most, are thoughtful gifts your recipients will love and use. It’s always a treat to start the new winter season with fresh winter accessories. Pair winter accessories with a cozy blanket to curl up in when you come inside, and you’ve got the perfect gift bundle.

Hot gift ideas:
1. Looking for the ultimate cold weather gift? The Leeman 3-Piece Rib Knit Fur Pom Winter Set has you covered. The set includes a Leeman Knit Beanie with Fur Pom Pom, Leeman Acrylic Rib Knit Scarf and Leeman Rib Knit Gloves, all in one great bundle! Each piece of this chic and super-soft set features a faux leather patch, and the beanie sports an adorable faux fur pom pom at the top. This Prime Line exclusive pairs beautifully with any winter coat, coming in Black, Blue-Navy, Cream and Gray options.

2. If pom-pom beanies aren’t for your client, try the Acrylic Knit With Patch Combo! This set includes a matching knit beanie and scarf packed in a clear frosted zip-locking storage pouch. Made of 100% acrylic, both beanie and scarf also feature cotton patch for a one-color imprint displayed on the front cuff of the beanie and on one end of the scarf. These sets come in Black, Blue-Navy, Gray or Green-Hunter.

3. Another cozy Prime Line exclusive, Leeman Heathered Knit Gloves in a classy heathered gray would make a great addition to anyone’s winter gear. Each glove is decorated with a faux leather patch on the cuff, measuring approximately 1.96″ wide  x 1.18″ high. Made  of 100% acrylic, these gloves will keep your recipients warm and stylish throughout the cold months.

4. Want to be the most popular gift giver this season? This Micro Mink Sherpa Blanket will win you the title! The deluxe double layer blanket has a luxuriously soft, faux mink fur on one side, and a warm and cozy lambswool sherpa on the other. Your family and friends will tussle over who gets the next turn! Each piece comes folded in a clear zippered storage bag with a top carry handle. Available in nine color options, the only thing that could make this blanket any better is that it’s also machine washable. 

Who’ll love these gifts:

    • Health and wellness
    • Gyms and yoga studios 
    • Corporate stores
    • Team wear
    • Collegiate and sororities



What to Do Today

As we get into holiday gifting season and Q4, you should already be showing your clients all the options they have to surprise and delight their recipients. In addition to the gift suggestions here, check out some valuable tools you can use on the alphabroder website:

  • Catalogs: See our latest e-apparel catalogslike our 2022 Gift Guide and Promotional Apparel & Products 2023at a glance so you can see what’s trending. You can share our generic versions with your clients.
  • SalesBuilder: Want the power of an entire graphic design department in the hands of your marketing team and sales reps? Whether you’re making a one-page custom flier, apparel lookbooks or an entire holiday or Q4 gifting presentation, you can use our premade templates to create professional templates that showcase the season’s hottest styles and colors.
  • High Stock Inventory Filter: When you use this feature, you can quickly find in-stock gift products in various styles and colors to present to your clients.