Guide for Harley Davidson Motorcycle Seat Stitching and Embroidery
Are you thinking about adding some color to the seats and backrest on your Harley Davidson motorcycle? Well there’s more to it than meets the eye, and we mean that literally. There are lots of things to consider as you’re getting started – color palette, design, location, fitment of your bike, existing custom seats and potentially customizing your seats entirely. This guide can help you avoid costly mistakes and get you on the road with custom seat embroidery that matches your style and your bike.
Can I do it myself?
In a word, NO. Unless you’re a true craftsman/expert, let a pro do it at a custom shop. They will have the equipment and skilled craftspeople to do the job right. Depending on your location, you should be able to find a reputable shop in your area. Hit up our Facebook page and ask the community. They’ll be glad to help you out.
Choosing the right color
Harley Davidson motorcycle colors are well-known to be vast and varied to give their customers the widest choices possible. Custom embroidery shops stock a huge variety of colors in both threads and fabric to ensure they’ll have the colors you need.
As far as matching thread color to your bike, you have lots of options. You can choose different shades of the same color as your bike, choose an entirely new color that goes with the color of your bike or just wing it and say “that looks good” and get it done.
Certain colors also go better together than others. Color schemes can actually get pretty scientific with various types that include monochromatic, analogous, complementary, triadic and more. The bottom line is that the colors you choose should make you feel good about your bike. Spend a little time online and you can find all kinds of color options to help you find what’s going to look best on your bike seats.
Choosing a design
Custom seat embroidery on Harley Davidson motorcycles has gotten much more common over the years thanks to technology and computerized stitching/embroidery equipment. Remember there’s a difference between stitching and embroidery. Custom stitching is usually a pattern that covers the entire bike seat (or most of it), and the variety of what you can get is enormous, from wall double diamond or stripe & side double diamond tuck to classic flame or spider webs. Embroidery is more about an image, logo, or specific design that is embroidered onto your seat or backrest.
If it’s custom stitching you’re after, you may be better off just buying the entire seat (and backrest). Custom Harley Davidson seats and backrests are relatively inexpensive, easy to install and look great. Advanblack carries a variety of seats and backrests for Harley King Tour Packs. Our backrests typically come with custom color stitching and piping and design patterns like honeycomb and diamond. Backrests add a nice flair to your bike and the integrated side wings give your passenger’s arms support. One of our most popular backrests is the King wraparound Tour-Pak backrest. We also have the small backrest) that fits the Razor or the Chopped Tour Pak.
Advanblack also has two of the coolest seats you can find. Our Raptor seat comes with double diamond stitching and ostrich leather which adds a luxurious touch to your bike. And our Cobra seat with honeycomb stitching gives your bike a dressed-up look that’ll put a smile on your face whenever you climb on your bike. Both of these seats fit most newer Road King, Street Glide, Electra Glide, or Road Glide models.
What makes these seats unique is our “Gel-Lab” seat core, which is so comfortable you won’t want to get off of your bike! It helps dissipate body heat and distributes weight evenly across the seat surface. It also reduces the vibration from the road, which can take the punch out of a long ride.
As for the color of the stitching and piping, we use 4 to 6 different colors depending on the seat or backrest, such as blue, black, red, orange, beige, white, and we just added green. These stitch colors are designed to go with as many Harley Davidson color combinations as possible.
We’ll be coming out with more designs and styles, so keep an eye on our website for new releases. Check out this video to get a better idea of what our seats and backrests are all about.
What about custom embroidery?
Custom embroidery is more about a specific design or image, such as symbols (military, hazardous materials, etc), logos, names/letters, wings, numbers, custom images, and more. Some custom shops now have online design tools that allow you to create or upload a design and then show you what the design will look like on your particular seat. Very cool.
The point is that you have options. Lots of options. You can go slow and start with a simple seat stitching, like diamonds or flames, and then add on additional images that show your personality. And the custom shops will also be able to assist you with colors. It’s what they do.
What’s it going to cost?
The cost of custom stitching and embroidery varies by design complexity, location on the bike seat or backrest, size, type of fabric and more. You can expect to spend $300-$500 on the low end and upwards of $1,000 for a more intricate job. This does not include custom fabric if you want to customize your seats entirely.
Advanblack backrests and seats run between $159 for smaller backrests to $329 for wraparound backrests and $429 for our custom seats.
Custom Bikes Need Custom Attention
Modifications on bikes are becoming more and more common that might affect your seating and embroidery options. Mods like custom tanks and rear fenders might require a seat to be custom-made.
Find a shop that knows Harley Davidson motorcycles. The difference in fitment and how it applies to custom embroidery is huge, and you need someone who understands the unique idiosyncrasies of Harley bikes. Most expert shops will help you if you’re unsure or what custom work might have been done before you owned the bike, if you bought it used.
If you want a little more subtle stitching, consider getting an entirely new seat or backrest that has the stitch pattern you like. Again, check out our selection - just pick something you like, select the color of thread and piping, and you’re good to go. They’re super easy to install, and you can always call our tech support if you have questions or run into any difficulties.
Finally, once you get the work done, everyone wants to see how it turned out. Upload some photos to our social media and show it off!