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  • Choosing fabric for machine embroidery. Woven fabrics

    Original text by Marina Belova 
    We all use fabric or some other material as a base for our machine embroidery. Machine embroidery is possible on a huge variety woven and non-woven fabrics and also knitwear. The machine embroidery design construction in many ways depends on the properties of the fabric that is going to be used as a base. 
    Today I decided to delve into the properties of the woven materials. I'd singled out 3 groups of properties that have the great influence over the embroidery: 
    Main properties of the woven materials concerning with structure: 
    Density which is determined by the number of the warp and weft yarns in 10 cm of the fabric. There are tightly woven, loosely woven and open fabrics. 
    The interweaving of the yarns has an impact on the durability of the fabric, its texture, elasticity, thickness, coarseness, proneness to fraying and shrinkage. 
    Main (simple) types of weave 
    Plain weave. Front and back side look identical. The fabric is highly durable.  Twill. Diagonal lines are distinctly visible on the fabric, running out from below left to upper right or upper left to below right. The first one is more common. Though such fabrics have a smoother surface, they are less durable than plain weave fabrics. They are distinctive for their softness and elasticity, their ability to arrange in folds and their stretchiness, especially diagonally.  Satin — has a smoother and evener surface than twill, is shinier, softer and more elastic and also ravel-prone.  Huck-a-back  Ribbed — has longitudinal or crosscutting ribs on the fabric.  Basket weave — has square-shaped ribs of the fabric.  Three-dimensional weave — a picture where warp or weft threads is raised.  Complex weave — made by 3 and more threads.  Jacquard is made by 3 and more threads.  Geometrical properties 
    Thickness — distance between the protruding parts of yarns on the right and wrong sides. Depends on the thread thickness, their curvature, type of weave, density and finishing. Plain weave fabrics are the thickest, twill and huck-a-back a bit thicker and complex weave cloths are the thickest. The choice and expenditure of threads, also the choice of needles and stabilizers depends on the fabric thickness.  Surface density is weight per 1 m2 of the fabric.  Mechanical properties show how the fabric reacts to the forces imposed upon it. 
    Tensile deformation  Flexural deformation  Technical properties, which characterize various stages of embroidery production. 
    Proneness to slip — depends on the surface: on the yarns and weave.  Cutting resistance.  Fraying ability — the ability of threads to slip and drop out of raw edges. Depends on the types of threads, their weave, density, and finishing.  Shrinkage — ability of the cloth to decrease in size under the influence of heating and water.  The ability of extrusion while washing and pressing — the ability of the fabrics to take a shape and retain it in wear. Depends on the fiber composition and fabric structure.  Yarn slippage — shifting of the yarns against each other under the influence of outer forces, which damage the structure and look of the fabric. Low-density fabrics are marked by it. These are silk cloth, organza and so on.  Proneness to needle cutting is what causes the damage to the fibers by a needle. It depends on fabric structure and type of finish, density, the right choice of needles and threads. Plain weave is easier for the needle to cut through, therefore, these fabrics are damaged more often than the ones with twill or satin weave.  Compressibility — the ability of the fabric to become thinner when being compressed. It characterizes thread expenditure and seam structure. Thick loosely spun fabrics like drape cloth and baize are compressible, the seams lie deep and are not visible. Coarse fabrics are almost non-compressible, the seams protrude from the surface, are visible to the eye, and these fabrics require more threads. 
    All these particularities of woven cloth make their mark on the digitizing process — every one of them has its own underlay properties, push and pull compensation, density values and so on. Therefore, there are no settings that are good for all types of fabric simultaneously, and you need to make alterations every time. Besides, the properties of the fabric influence the embroidery process: the (im)possibility of hooping, the hooping method, the choice of stabilizers, etc. 


    Choosing fabric for machine embroidery

    Original text by Marina Belova 
    The most interesting aspect of machine embroidery is that one design can look different after being embroidered on different fabrics. And the reason for this are different fabric properties, which have a great influence over the end result. Digitizing and the embroidery process are essential, too. 
    All fabric for machine embroidery may be divided into 3 groups; I'll cover their properties in separate articles: 
    Woven fabrics  Knitted fabrics (various kinds of knitwear)  Non-woven materials (leather, felt, paper, wood, etc.)  Each of these groups can be split into subgroups and types. It is generally accepted that woven fabrics are much easier to embroider than knits. In my opinion, it is nothing more than an embroidery myth. Benchmark parameters for all kinds of fabrics have existed for a long time, as well as for the needles and stabilizers and other stuff. When working with this or that kind of fabric they should be used as a starting point. And if you have some experience and power of observation, you can conquer them all. 
    You don't even need to go far to obtain this information — nearly any machine embroidery editor has templates with preset values of density, compensation, types of underlay and so on. For example, this is the template for embroidery on terry cloth in Stitch Era: 

    Sometimes the embroidery software will even offer you recommendations on the choice of stabilizer like I was in Drawings. 
    But I'll repeat just once more: take no instructions for granted but go and try for yourself instead. 

    Minimizing thread breakage

    Original text by Marina Belova 
    I've been drawn to the idea of saving lately. Nothing can help you to save money better than the absence of the thread breakage. Just try to estimate how much money you waste on dealing with a broken thread, then come back and retrace the embroidery. One should also remember that the place where the thread had broken stands out to the naked eye. 
    In theory (and in practice), every design should not just be beautiful, but, with the good performance, able to be embroidered, too. I've read on Frank Gawronski's website recently that a machine embroidery design is considered good when the thread breaks less than once every 10—15 thousand stitches on the multi-head embroidery machine. And less than once every 60—100 thousand stitches on the single-head embroidery machine. 
    Unfortunately, the facts that I've picked up in the course of my embroidery career, say the opposite. Often the consumables — needles and threads — were to blame. I remember that once when I was using a Chinese brand, the thread broke every 100—150 stitches, and when a German brand was used instead, the trouble vanished as it by magic. The embroidery looked fluffy without using any acrylic threads. Sometimes, an embroidery machine had its needle in the pie. And also the designs often are third-rate. 
    The reasons for the thread breakage depend on all kinds of factors: 
    The design  The embroidery sequence  Embroidery machine settings  Consumable materials (threads, needles, stabilizers and so on.)  Embroidery machine operating skills  I will not enlarge upon the embroidery process itself and also upon the consumable materials — those are the topics for two separate articles. I'd better bring your attention to the things you should check out in order to minimize the thread breakage. 
    The design 
    The embroidery sequence begins with the good design. Before digitizing it, you'll need to make the assessment in order to find possible problems. Such problems as too many details that result in multi-layered embroidery, which can lead to the thread breakage because of its thickness. Too small details: thin outlines, curved in too many places, etc. It is possible that some of them can be spared or simplified. 
    Digitizing 
    There are 3 main reasons why poor digitizing leads to the thread breakage: 
    Wrong stitch length Automatic trimming in wrong places  Excess stitches squeezed into a too small embroidery area  Dealing with these reasons prevents about 75% of the thread breakage. 
    Wrong stitch length 
    As you know, almost any embroidery machine is capable of making stitches from 0.1 to 12.7 mm long. But in reality, it becomes clear that stitches under 1 mm and over 7 mm are the reason for additional thread breakage because of the curves and because the needle deviates from its axis. 
    Therefore, you should check out the stitch lengths in a design before digitizing. Modern embroidery software offers all kinds of handy tools, such as removing stitches shorter that the stated value. Also, there is splitting long stitches into shorter ones. 
    Carefully digitize automatic trims 
    I won't reinvent the wheel if I mention that a trim requires a tie-off before and after the trimming. Though I've often heard that you can dispose of the one after — the understitching is there, anyway, and it should not be secured with lock stitches, for they are underneath. Moreover, I tried this once. Technically the absence of lock stitch on the object that follows is a common reason for the thread coming out of the needle. And this can count as breakage. 
    Tie-offs protect the design from breaking loose. When the machine resumes the embroidery, in only has a short thread end to make the loop.
    Therefore, you should place a lock stitch and resume the embroidery on a low speed in order to avoid thread coming out of needle at this moment. 
    Nowadays the digitizer won't have any trouble inserting a tie-off. For virtually every editor has a logical value that automatically does that after color change and trims. This makes the job much easier. 
    Lower the density 
    The excessive stitch count in a small embroidery area will lead to the thread breakage because of the high density. It is necessary to lower the design's stitch count, simplify the details, decrease the number of layers and use motif stitches and patterns. I.e. reduce the number of stitches as much as possible. I've expanded on the subject here. 
    Proper digitizing depends not so much on the software, but on the knowledge and skills of the design creator. For any embroidery editor is only the instrument for making the task quicker and easier. It cannot estimate whether the design is made right or wrong. Machine embroidery software does not know, what can be done and what is not recommended. It does not have an algorithm for such things. 
    It has been said that everybody who can draw in a computer program can learn to digitize machine embroidery in no time. But based on the above, one can conclude that a digitizer should know the embroidery process inside out and also have a profound knowledge of the theory of machine embroidery. This is necessary for understanding what embroidery software options work well enough, and what would be better done manually. 
     

    Your little needle replacement helper

    Original text by Marina Belova 
    I consider it to be a common knowledge that one should turn a replacement needle 0–5° to the right.  That’s what every embroidery machine manual says. 

    A long time ago Vera Osinina asked me about a device that helps to position new needles. I was quite a bit surprised then, so I only shrugged and said that such a contrivance was unknown to me, and that I didn’t know where to find one. 
    But the cat always comes out of the bag, sooner or later. The answer came from a wonderful Melco Bravo website. They offer a cylindrical-shaped orientation magnet – you can buy it here. You need to attach its butt perpendicular to the long groove, to see at what angle and in what direction the needle is positioned.  
    You've set the right angle if the magnet is turned approximately 1 minute on a clock face, or 6 degrees. Genius lies in simplicity, as they say. 
    Of course, there is no need here to order a magnet from the U.S., at an astronomical price.  I guess a simple magnet instead of a brand one, will do for me
    There was a long argument about the diameter: I insisted upon buying a thin cylinder, as my American colleagues use, and my husband stood for a thicker one as more visible. 5 mm cylinders were purchased eventually. We tried the magnets and saw that they worked: the positioning of the groove was no longer the problem. One only needs to get used to it so that it doesn't hamper the replacement. I checked all my needles only to find out that all of them were set higgledy-piggledy – one of them was even turned let; that was immediately fixed. Small wonder that my threads kept breaking. 


    The magnet turned out to be a real helper to those whose eyesight and eye estimation leave something to be desired. 
     
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      hello, i have machine Brother pro 1050X. i have problem Embroidery pattern does not sew out correctly. look photo. how fix this problem? thanks
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      Im looking to buy a needle embroidery machine and found one for sale on Sold Tiger as well as other embroidery equipment. I thought many of you here will be interested in some embroidery equipment.
    • By Travis in Machine embroidery, digitizing, news, ideas help
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      The present focused market calls for imaginative ways to deal with advancement of custom embroidery services. From imaginative introductions to simple to-explore online web stores to stunning IT administration frameworks, we give our clients the ability to broaden their corporate marking activities and surpass their showcasing objectives. Also, our far reaching request preparing and satisfaction administrations enable them to stay concentrated on their center business while our turnkey operation deals with the difficulties of the advancements and satisfaction business.
      Considering your alternatives for custom attire, embroidered clothing conveys a fundamental feeling of value that addresses the intuitive of customers and clients, giving a sentiment trust and fulfillment.
      Advantages of custom embroidery:
      It gives you a professional appearance. It can be put on a wide assortment of materials. It lasts longer (doesn't wear off like silkscreen paint does). It can be washed easily. Large amount of shades are accessible in it. Some typical examples of custom embroidery embroider clothing are:
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