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Beautiful design, Morning owl look amazing.

This embroidery work up perfectly and stitch out nicely. 
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Excellent stitches and original style

Stitched out beautifully! Looked amazing and no issues!
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Loving birds.. Wonderful designs, stitched out beautifully

Really cute, You love this when you stitched it. Would love more of same designs.
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Our designs looks great

Stitched out beautifully! Wonderful decoration!
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Adorable design. Stitches out beautifully.

"Thanks so much for this design It's lovely and stitched out beautifully on leather."
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  • diver361

    Embroidering on Carpet

    By diver361

    In some areas of leisure you will find niche markets, I have found one being able to make custom carpets for custom cars and sport fishing boats. So if you live near the water this is something you may want to offer, or if you have any car clubs in your areas. First you need to make a sample and bring it to car shows etc, or display it at your local dealers. Hi have done mats like the like the item Below, this was actually done for a young kids room.. As it was not going to be exposed to elements I was able to use some applique in the embroidery design. I have made over 20 specialized customer carpet sets for sport boats , custom cars and some other client that like items on carpets. I am also trying to break into the yacht market and embroider on carpets and seat covers. This is a niche market and I don't normally have standard pricing as you have to run your embroidery machine a lot slower it will take you twice as long to sew the designs, you will also go through more needles as once your done the job the needle are basically garbage, I would also recommend cleaning your embroidery machine between jobs the carpets give a fine dust that will get into the bobbin area when sewing. I have a small compressor right by the machine for blowing of the parts and lubricating. Most of my sets of carpets for a car go $250 to $400 and only quote on carpets for the trunk, I did one custom van and I had 5 carpets to do and I charge the customer $1200 for the job. When embroidering on carpets, you should be aware that conventional hoops will not be able hoop a carpet & that your embroidery machines arms will not support the weight on its own. I would recommend if you have a table raise it up to support the carpet. I use large clamps metal clamps to clamp it to the bottom sides of the embroidery machine arms, I found if you clamp it to the top it will stress the needle too much. I also recommend the following tips for sewing on carpets. Use a 80/12 Titanium needle with a sharp point as regular needles will get dull from punching through the carpet backing. All designs must be digitized for carpets as there are special requirements for the embroidery designs . Slow your machine down to a minimum of 400 rpm If its a Plush carpet please use topping this will prevent the presser foot from catching the nap of the carpet and or pulling out a strand or fiber of the carpet. Shave the outer edge of the carpet to prevent the nap from folding over the designs makes it look cleaner I use a Peggy stitch eraser If you want to sew you will either need to have the embroidery design made for carpets, keep in mind that you may run into problems if the embroidery design is not made properly. I purchased a used Merro embroidery machine to make custom carpets to fit the application and allows you to purchase bulk carpet for the application, If you have to purchase carpets that are customer made for the vehicle you will have to get in contact with the vendor. Another options is to sew through the rubber backing however doing this requires a great deal of patients and often frustrate you more than not however it can be done, If you consider attempting this you will need to use 110 needle and 40 weight polyester thread and slow your machine down. In addition between carpets check for needle damage and clean the needles blow of the dust from the embroidery machine. You also will need a industrial sewing machine for this option. Remember anything is possible however there is a learning curve when venturing into new areas.
    • 2 comments
    • 5,090 views
  • Irina

    How to Evaluate The Thread Tension by Sight And What To Do About It

    By Irina

    Original text by: Marina Belova One would think that evaluating of tension of the thread is such an old chestnut. But no, last week it came as a revelation to me. It is strange that such an essential information is practically non-existent on the internet, whereas manuals only contain the instructions on how to do the most basic things. And it is such a shame, really.  So, everybody knows (including me) that after the embroidery has been completed, the backside of a perfect satin-stitch column should look like this: 1/3+1/3+1/3 (upper + under + upper). If the column is divided differently, it means that you need to adjust your upper thread tension or the under-thread tension on your bobbin case.  I shall be honest with you, I don't see this ideal picture often, certainly not all the time. Velles 15 is notorious for getting the thread tension wrong, of which I've written many times, and was supported by the others. But there is a problem with the dial itself, which is pretty crude and, consequently, lacks the possibilities the Velles 19 dial has. But no matter how the dial was made, you have to adjust it all the time. The question is, how do you do it? Sometimes it's quite difficult a task to adjust it properly.  As it happens, you have to act wisely. First of all, I'll show you the most typical occasion which happens all the time when I use my Velles 15, and which has always puzzled me. These are my real works, not the test pieces:  As it turns out, this irregular outcome of the bobbin thread is a mark that something is wrong with a bobbin case. Is it either bent or damaged.  To check this just lay the bobbin case with the bobbin inside onto the table or any other flat surface with bobbin facing down. Then pull at the thread, holding the case slightly and allowing the bobbin to uncoil freely. It the thread is not uncoiled smoothly, but jerkily, it is the sign that the bobbin case has been damaged, so that it is not round anymore. Most likely, it was dropped on the floor in the past. I have dropped it, of course, even more that once, but I never thought about the consequences.  To cut the long story short, you must have a spare bobbin case. Sometimes the jerking like that cannot be corrected in any other way. And now I'll tell you about two of the most typical examples.  a. The under-thread is just barely visible on the underside or not visible at all: In this case you will have to find time to run your machine through all those tension tests at least once  to find out what happens with every one of your needles. Here you can also see the perfectly emblematic old photo of the old I-test from the times when I already had huge problems with a bobbin case.  It turned out, to my surprise, that there are two ways of adjustment in this situation (this nuance of evaluation of the test results is hardly mentioned at all):  •    If such is the situation with all or nearly all of your needles, loosen the under-thread tension. 
    •    But if this happens only with 2 or 3 needles, tighten the upper thread on them.  b. The under-thread on the underside is more than 1/3 column wide):  Again, run your machine through all the tests using every needle and see. And again you can get two different results:  •    If such is the result produced by all the needles, tighten the under-thread tension. 
    •    If you get it only with 2 or 3, loosen the upper thread.  That is basically all. I didn't know that it was so easy and used to regard thread tension tests with disdain. One should love their embroidery machine and care about it, so that it could reciprocate and minimize the number of unpleasant moment in the course of embroidery.  We have so much yet to learn.  P.S. A thought just popped in my head: what about single-thread embroidery machines that don't have a lot of needles, which can help you to compare their performance and understand what tension needs to be adjusted? How do you adjust the tension there? 
    Some of my readers suggest buying a special device that helps to adjust upper and under-thread tension. And what do you think?
    • 0 comments
    • 1,782 views
  • Irina

    Embroidery Stabilizers: Do You Really Need Them All?

    By Irina

    Original text by: Marina Belova I have once written a guide to all sorts of embroidery stabilizers (fusible interfacing materials) for manual embroidery. As we all know, the market is full of such auxiliary materials, which can be helpful to an embroiderer. Nevertheless, in these days I often think that not all of them are useful for me in my day-to-day work.  In the past I used to buy a lot of stabilizers of various brands, to see if they could be really helpful. I liked some of them and disliked the others; there were also certain products that I didn't know how and where to use even after having read the manual. In the course of time, after I gained some experience, it turned out that 3 or 4 types of stabilizer were sufficient for me to make a good embroidery. They really are enough for everything I embroider lately.  I'll show you what stabilizers I use for all routine projects and all types of fabric. I must specify though that the projects I do are rather simple: standard promotional designs on knitwear, terry cloth, occasionally caps, also ordinary materials like diagonal, coarse calico, two-thread cloth, sometimes the materials used in interior design, fore example silks and velvets of varying quality.  So, here's my basic embroidery stabilizer kit: 1.   Heavy-weight cutaway stabilizer (I wouldn't call it tearaway, like most of the sellers, because it doesn't tear that good), made in China. Density circa 60 g/m2. This stabilizer has a strongly pronounced fiber orientation, which isn't always good. Works fine for knitwear. Here it is: 2.   Medium weight cutaway stabilizer (some consider it tearaway) made in China or Turkey, density 35-40 g/m2. In my kit there is a cutaway stabilizer of 2 different brands, with and without fiber orientation (the last is my personal favorite). I use them for medium-level projects and ordinary textiles. Photo: an example of a stabilizer with single fiber orientation: And this is the one without any orientation: 3. A tearaway paper-like stabilizer, density circa 60 g/m2. It resembles recycled paper because it looks just as specked and non-uniform. I also have a punched-out variation of this paper, which also tears away easily. As it turned out, it comes in very handy when embroidering a design on terry cloth. But this paper-like stabilizer (and not only this one), as experience has shown, may be replaced by ordinary printing paper, which I sometimes do when it fits the size of design.  I rarely use other types of stabilizers, and usually as supplementary ones. 4. Thin water soluble film — a stabilizer topping for pile textiles, prevents the problem with pile piercing through the stitches. Nevertheless, I rarely use this film, too, but instead replace it with a stretch wrap or a plastic bag. I tested all the these materials in order to find a substitution for the expensive water soluble stabilizers, as I have already written. Water soluble stabilizers are used for lace and cutwork. There are also other types of auxiliary materials I use from time to time: Temporary spray adhesive Paper adhesive tape Double-sided adhesive tape And that's all there is to it. I don't keep a large variety of stabilizers. No spunbond, no heat away backing, no sticky backing paper-like filmoplast or other sticky embroidery stabilizers — I don't buy or use any of those. And even if I did buy some of them in the past, it was only for the purpose of examining them, because all these stabilizers can be replaced by their less expensive analogs. You can' have them all. Besides, if you embroidered on velvet using filmoplast as a stabilizer, it would turn out a real disaster, because filmoplast has a habit of taking the pile out, and it peels off easily, too. You have to be extremely careful with the projects that require a great number of stitches. Double-sided adhesive tape also tends to peel off the fabric.  Sometimes I think that everything new that pops up on the market is made with one goal in sight, and that is to induce customers to buy more and more materials. This happens because stabilizers become more and more differentiated, and not because they work better. It seems to me that the resulting embroidery is not always in connection with the price of a stabilizer and the innovations used in its making. What it depends upon is the quality of the design and the accuracy of hooping. Generally speaking, the resulting embroidery will be in strong connection with your experience in design making as well as handling different types of fabric and the embroidery machine.  Remember the general rule: the thinner the fabric, the thicker the stabilizer, however strange it might seem. You will get very soft lace using thermogaze, but it leaves residue which does not come off easily.  What stabilizers do you use in your work?
    • 4 comments
    • 7,566 views
 

Understanding Stablizers


Embroidery stabilizer is often very confusing, in this blog we hope to enlighten you and help you understand why we use backing and why one doesn't one type work for all garments. Please note backing comes in all shapes and size, from rolls, to cut sheets and may be available in Black for dark fabrics too..When it comes to selecting the type of backing to use for a application its good to know a little about why you should use a certain type of backing. We will try and cover this. There are several factors that you will need to consider when making a choice on which backing to use, the garment fabric, stitch density, color of the garment, color of the design, special consideration like for a jacket back or heavy design or whether it has small text and how much will the design be laundered. These are all factors, that should impact your decision on what type of backing to use. Below is a chart I like that explains the Elasticity of types of fabrics, The higher the stretch often means you should be using a very stable fabric, and or underlay type, usually the backing works hand in hand with the underlay of the design and the compensation. Here is a visual that just changing the backing type will impact how a design will take when being sewn on a loose knitted fabric. ( Tearaway Backing ) The embroidery design would be greatly improved if underlay was used in addition to 2 pcs of tearaway, and a bit more density. No Show Backing - Another factor that is rarely talked about is how translucent the fabric is, If you fabric is a light colored garment you may want to opt for a No show type cutaway backing as some backing you will see through the shirt. I always keep some no show on hand for when embroidering on a beige knitted shirt, as cutaway will otter show through and no show cutaway works the same with out showing through. Fusible Backing Another type of backing which is not used often enough is fusible backing this is great for applications where its hard to hoop and item, like belt, napkin corner , patches and is also known as sticky backing. I use this on fabric where I am hooping half of a garment like tuque. Once its down being embroidered it can be torn away just like Tearaway. Cut-away Backing I tend to use this on material that either stretch a lot , or are laundered a lot as it helps the embroidery design hold it shape. I will also use cutaway when sewing a heavy design or in an application where the backing will not been seen, like inside an embroidery pocket on a jacket, or for a large jacket back. Here are some other material I will use Cutaway. Loose knit fabrics Fine knit fabrics Golf jerseys Knit golf shirts Lightweight woven silks Wool / acrylic sweaters Bathing suits / Lycra / Spandex   Tear-away Backing I often use Tearaway its my personal favorite, however you will need to look at the application before deciding if it can be used. I often will double up on the number of sheet. Remember that tearaway removes cleanly from the embroidery design... Towels Hats Cotton / polyester Corduroy Sheets Nylon satin jackets Leather or vinyl Wash away Backing This I only started using when I started working with a boring tool for my machine, it allows me to do cut work, But I have started experimenting with free standing lace , great for ornaments and decorative embroidery designs. Free standing ace Cut work designs Reverse applique Wash away Topping This I use when ever the garment or application calls for it, if the pile is high on a garment where the pressure foot might catch a strand of the thread from the garment I will use it , also provide the top stitch more stabilization. There are many more types out there , Pucker Resistant Backing This is fairly new but its like a fibre backing, it a man made backing where the horizontal and vertical support is the same. This backing also comes in black, its expensive but it helps reduce puckering. Also use the smallest needle when stitching on fabrics that pucker. Stabilizer Review In embroidery there are always going to be variables, try different backing types from different vendors or manufactures, you will find that the support various , and their several thickness and colors as well. Backing will always be dependent on the design, needle, the size of the hoop, the fabric. There is no right way or wrong way, only the way that works for you.. Author: Frank Prokator

diver361

diver361

 

Knowing your needles

  NEEDLE GUIDE Knowing your Needles The needle: It’s a small innocuous component of every embroidery machine that tends to get overlooked, even ignored – until it breaks. Even then, the typical response is to change it out and keep going. Small, inexpensive, rather boring, but extremely critical to the embroidery process. Without a needle, stitches could not be formed. Knowing your needles are critical. Needles have various components, including tips for applications, Needle Application While most shops are guilty of this or just don't know they use the same needle for all their designs and jobs. There are many types of needles available and we will cover some types of needles, applications for needles, types of needles and troubleshooting needles. Needle Sizes and Applications Below you will find a needle recommendation chart, which has the garment type, needle size and type of needle, While you can use the same needle for various applications sometimes the quality will be affected due to the wrong needle choices that you make or ignore. The System Number The system number is an additional descriptive term for needles. It is actually a combination of numbers and/or letters referring to the total length of the needle and variations in the needle eye. Each machine is setup to use a specific needle system number. Changing to a needle with a different system number may require changing the timing of the embroidery machine. Here are some examples of commonly used needles for commercial embroidery machines. Your manufacturer will tell you which is appropriate for your model. DBxK5 – This is considered the standard needle for many of the popular brands of commercial embroidery machines. It works well with most threads. DBx7ST – This needle is similar to the DBxK5, except that it has a larger eye that is elongated and rectangular in shape. It’s designed to be used with metallic threads. DBx9ST – This needle is designed for use with heavy embroidery threads and has an eye size twice as large as a basic needle such as the DBxK5. (In most cases, the above-listed needles are interchangeable.) Needle Tips The are a wide range of tips the most common is the sharp , but there are times when a wedge point or ball point can come in handy,   Needle Eye The are times yo will need to order a needle with a specific eye size, especially for working with Metallic embroidery threads.   COATED NEEDLES Needles may be available with a special non-stick coating that will reduce heat buildup and allow the needle eye to remain clear of embroidery thread or garment fibers. These needles are referred to as Teflon®-coated or Cool Sew, depending upon the manufacturer. Their ability to reduce friction makes them ideal for synthetics like cordura and nylon. The most common problems caused by needles are thread breaks, thread shreds and broken needles. In order to troubleshoot these problems you have to visualize the movements and path of the needle. THREAD BREAKS Needles only break when they encounter a solid obstruction. The only parts of a machine that the needle can run into are the hoop, the trimmer knife, the bobbin hook and the needle plate. Hitting the hoop is a pretty obvious problem that can be attributed to operator error. If a hoop crash does occur, either the embroidery design is larger than the hoop or the hoop was not centered properly before sewing. The trimmer knife is sometimes the culprit behind a needle break. Though not a common occurrence, there are occasions where the trimmer knife (located below the needle plate) doesn't fully retract, placing it directly in the path of the descending needle. This is usually caused by a build-up of dirt in the retract area where the knife normally resides. You should periodically remove the needle plate and clean out any dust, dirt or lint buildup to prevent this from happening. If the bobbin hook timing gets out of synch, the needle may run into the bobbin hook as it descends. Machine timing is something that should not need frequent adjustment. However, in the case of a hoop crash, the timing might be affected, such that an adjustment becomes necessary. You can make a quick check by turning off the embroidery machine and manually rotating the main shaft while watching the needle go through a stitch cycle (remove the needle plate while doing this). It will be obvious if the needle is coming into contact with the hook. Most machines can be reset manually check with your embroidery machine manual. NEEDLES BREAKING By far, the most common source of needle-related problems is the needle coming in contact with the needle plate. As it sews, the point of the needle may be deflected slightly as it pierces the fabric being sewn. (Obviously a smaller needle such as the 65/9 will see more deflection than a larger one). If a mild deflection occurs, the needle will pass very close to the inside edge of the needle plate hole, possibly grazing it. This in turn may allow the upper thread (being carried by the needle) to rub along the edge of the needle plate hole as well, resulting in thread shreds or breaks. If a more drastic needle deflection occurs, the needle itself may catch the edge of the needle plate hole, resulting in a broken needle. A prime example is a six-panel cap with a heavy center seam. As the needle encounters the edge of the seam, it may start deflecting slightly, which in turn leads to thread shreds, thread breaks and even needle breaks. Thread shreds and thread breaks can also be caused by at least three other needle problems as follows: - Using a needle with an eye that is too small in relationship to the thickness of the embroidery thread. - A burr in the needle eye or along the front of the blade. - High temperature caused by friction during the sewing process. If you start having sewing problems that can be attributed to the needle, don’t hesitate to change it out, since the cost of a needle is only a few cents. Periodically replace your needles as they do get dull over time. Is there a recommended frequency for replacement? Ask your needle supplier. In reality, some fabrics will dull a needle faster than others, plus it’s nearly impossible to track the usage of each needle on a multi-needle machine. So, it’s difficult to determine needle life. When you see the quality of your stitching starting to decrease, then it might be time to change the needles. Though small in size, needles can have a big impact on sewing. Don’t take them for granted. Before starting each job, take a minute to analyze the needle requirements, then choose the correct needle for the job. This small sliver of silver can help you bring in the gold on every job. Sometimes during the sewing process, you can end up with small cuts or holes around the edges of the embroidery (not to be confused with large holes left behind after a bird’s nest develops). These small defects usually are less visible after the garment is unhooped, but they are still there, and can lead to quality problems in the long-term. In the case of a knit garment, small holes and/or cuts can lead to “runs” in the fabric after one or two washing. Here are the likely causes: TROUBLESHOOTING NEEDLES Replace the needle. Dull needles have difficult time getting through the garment, causing some fabrics to tear. Wrong Needle Point Type , Sharp-point needles can cut some delicate knits. Try a ball-point needle. Needle is too Large- Large needles can stretch fibers excessively, causing them to burst or become distorted. needle size that is still acceptable for the thread size you are using. RULES FOR NEEDLES Rule #1 – Sharp point needle for woven. Ball point needle for knits. Rule #2 – Larger diameter needle for stiff, thick and/or heavyweight fabrics. Rule #3 – Smaller diameter needle for lightweight and delicate fabrics. Rule #4 – Smaller diameter needle for intricate designs and/or small details. Rule #5 -- Small text under .30 inch use a 65/9 needle with 60 weight thread REVIEW In taking a look at the different types of needles they also work hand in hand with your thread choices, not all jobs can be achieved by one type of needle will it work yes, will it look its best know.. In my shop I keep several types of needles a box of titanium coated 80/12 needles for carpets, 65/9 needles with 60 wt thread for doing small letters, and a box of ball point needles when sharp needles won't work. A box of Wedge point needle for leather work. While a sharp needles are used primary in the industrial shops its a good idea to use special needles for some applications so you get better results.   Author: Frank Prokator

diver361

diver361

 

Introduction to Threads


There is a wide range of thread choices available to today’s embroiderer. However, unless time is taken to experiment with different choices, they may never get a chance to offer them to their customer. Most new embroiderers purchase a start up kit with their equipment that contains one type of thread. They start with and continue to use this same thread as if it is the only style available, without ever considering if there is a better alternative. As it turns out, there are several types and styles of thread and the professional embroiderer needs to be aware of their characteristics and applications.   Commercial embroidery threads are most commonly grouped by fiber content as follows: rayon, polyester, metallic and cotton. Within each fiber group, threads are available in different thicknesses or weights.   Weight is an important consideration, as it can affect the visual quality of a design. A 40 weight is considered the standard for the industry. A higher number is thinner, while a lower number is thicker. Most designs are digitized with a 40 weight thread in mind. For example, a large area designed to be filled with stitches created using 40 weight thread would appear nice and solid upon completion. If the embroiderer switched to 60 weight thread, which is not as thick, then the “filled” area would have many gaps. One trick for reducing thread counts is to use a heavier thread such as 35 weight. Because it is thicker, fewer stitches are needed to cover the same area than if a 40 weight thread were being used.   RAYON Rayon embroidery thread has been the mainstay of the commercial embroidery industry for many years. It is soft, brilliant and durable. Rayon is available in a wider range of colors, than any other thread. It can withstand dry cleaning and multiple washings. However, some colors do not resist bleach very well. A 40 weight is considered the standard for rayon. Several manufacturers offer it in other weights such as 60, 35, 30 and 12. A 60 weight rayon is ideal for creating smaller detail work. To be successful, it should only be used with a smaller needle such as a 60 or 65. When using a heavier weight thread such as 30 or 35, a larger needle will be required.   POLYESTER Polyester embroidery thread has gained popularity in the last few years and is fast overtaking rayon as the thread of choice among st commercial embroiderers. Though not available in as many colors as rayon, there is still a wide range of choices, with more being added every year by the manufacturers. Polyester thread is considered more durable than rayon and can withstand the harsh effects of bleaching. This makes it the ideal choice for garments that will undergo frequent washing, such as service uniforms that are worn in “dirty” environments. Like rayon, the standard weight for polyester is 40. Some manufacturers offer it in 30 weight as well. Because polyester is slightly stiffer than rayon, fine design details may need to be digitized differently when using it. Another characteristic of polyester thread is that it is more elastic than rayon. Thus, some stretching followed by rebounding can occur while sewing. The result is tiny loops forming on top of the embroidery design. Therefore, the thread tensions should be increased (on the machine) to control this problem.   METALLIC Metallic embroidery thread is a specialty thread that is used to create unique textures and special effects. Their construction is very unique and they come in three different variations: core-wrapped, twisted and flat-foil. All of them have some sort of foil used in their construction. These foils are generally metalized polyester. Core-wrapped is the most common and gives the smoothest, most even shine. It is created by wrapping the foil around a core yarn of rayon, polyester or nylon, resulting in a round thread with a metallic covering.   Metallic threads can be difficult to use. They are less flexible than rayon or polyester and do not flow easily. In fact, there is a tendency for them to “kink” while sewing which leads to thread breaks and “bird nests.” Thus, when sewing with metallic thread, slower machine speeds are required along with the undivided attention of the machine operator.   Once again, 40 weight is the most common size. However, even though it is approximately the same thickness as a 40 weight rayon, the density of an area sewn with metallic should be programmed five to ten percent less than if rayon were being used.   I recommend a large eye needle when using metallic threads.   COTTON Rayon and polyester threads are known for their high luster finishes. Cotton on the other-hand has a low luster, almost dull finish. This can be quite useful for creating different looks. It is available in many weights, with 40 being the standard, but a limited number of colors. It withstands repeated washings very well, but not bleaching. Cotton is an excellent choice for sewing designs with high detail. It is also very useful for creating designs where the desire is for a low key, understated appearance.   There are many thread choices available to the embroiderer. Chances are you will use 40 weight rayon or polyester for the majority of your work. But take some time to experiment and see what you can create using different weights and styles. THREAD STORAGE   Thread should be stored in a cool, dark location. Manufacturers suggest a humidity level of 40% to 60% and a temperature ranging between 50 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Direct sunlight is also not good for embroidery thread, as it can cause discoloration over time. Threads should also be kept covered to prevent dust and lint buildup, which will cause the thread to soften. This leads to thread breaks.   Thread is one of those things that we depend heavily on, but typically ignore until it causes a crisis, such as excessive embroidery thread breaks and/or shreds. Such problems may be the result of a defective cone, but it is far more likely that the quality issues are the result of improper handling and storage.   The most important aspect of thread care is proper storage. Most embroiderers use the same system for managing their thread inventory – all over the place. Walk in to almost any shop and you will see various cones piled up in every available location – counter tops, shelves, desks, the back of a machine, etc. This is the worst possible way to handle your valuable thread as it can lead to the following situations: Thread Dents – (What the heck is that?) When a cone falls onto the floor, the point of impact can “dent” the thread, resulting in a weak spot (or spots) that can ultimately lead to problems as the thread travels towards the needle. If you are one of those people who sees the machine as the idle storage location for unused cones, then you are at high risk for causing embroidery thread dents, as those cones will “walk” across the machine table due to the vibration of sewing and ultimately end up on the floor. Discoloring & Fading – Threads, especially rayon, will fade when exposed to sunlight for extended periods of time. If your threads are stored on a window sill or anywhere that sunlight can strike them full force, you risk fading and discoloring. Lint Build-up – If your thread is sitting out, exposed to the elements of your shop’s environment, chances are that dust and lint are building up on it at a rapid clip. Over time, such buildup can sink down into the threads. When the thread travels through the upper thread path, it takes the crud with it, dispensing it along the way onto critical surfaces (such as tensioners) that need to remain clean and smooth. The result will be inconsistent upper thread tension and possible thread breaks. Brittleness – In addition to discoloring and fading, excessive exposure to sunlight can dry out the thread and lead to brittleness in the fibers. Obviously, this will weaken the thread and lead to excessive thread breaks. So now that you know the results of improper thread storage, it is time to focus on how to prevent such problems. The key is to store your threads the right way each and every day. The best storage system is one that keeps the threads in a secure location, out of sunlight and free from dust and lint. In addition, it should be a cool environment. If you are a small shop with only a hundred cones of thread or so, then a large plastic container with a snap-on lid will probably work just fine. Avoid the clear-plastic models. For larger shops, running multi-head embroidery machines, thread storage becomes a bit more complex. Consider a large cabinet with shelves and pull-out bins, either plastic or cardboard. Such bins should not be mechanically connected to the shelves, such that they can be fully removed from the cabinet for easy access. Usually such bins are available in a wide range of sizes. If you have a six head machine, then you want to find bins that can hold at least six cones of thread each. This way, you can store all of one color in one bin and label it on the outside for easy reference. Such a storage system not only protects your threads, it also increases your efficiency, as all threads are stored together and labeled for quick identification. Of course, if you don’t put the embroidery threads away promptly after using, then any thread storage system you invest in probably won’t help very much. You can also invest in plastic sleevs for your embroidery threads   Author: Frank Prokator

diver361

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Converting stitches to Outline

Outline Editing   Converting stitches to Outlines When all you have is a stitch file like a DST or a design from a catalog its very important to know how to convert a stitch file to an Outline file their are two ways depending on your needs. Sometimes when you convert a whole file you may get artifacts or portions of the machine embroidery design that do not look proper, if your just adding text leave the file as a stitch file, if you need to re-size it then you will need to convert it to an outline, below are the two methods. 1) You want to edit a portion of a embroidery design but not the remaining, use this option , in the sequence view high light the segment that you want to edit and right click or press CTRL E and a menu should appear.. Go to process... and choose stitch to outline. This will convert the high lighted section.   Above you should see the stitches as they would appear after converting the selection , take note of the stitch types, somethings were originally a fill but now that they're converted they are a satin stitch , it was originally 1 piece now its broken in to several pieces and if you need to adjust it it make cause some issues. where gaps will be formed , at these times you may want to repunch that section. But now you can add underlay or remove components, however unlike a true outline you can only add you cannot change the underlay as it there and you can see it but the software doesn't so you manually have to delete the segment and add to it. Alternate Method The second method of converting the file is to convert the whole file, you can do it by selecting the whole file and right clicking or pressing CTRL E like previously noted or you can use the second method. Opening a stitch file as an outline file. In the file open window, when you have a DST selected you can open the file as a stitch segment see below   STITCH FILES When working with stitch files you should be aware of certain attributes and rules that apply to this format. When resizing it doesn't adjust the density, or the stitch count of the design. Which will make for a poor sew out if resized more than 10%. Files that are considered stitch files include, DST, EMB, PCH, PES, PSF, and SEW, HUS and many others. When working with any stitch file you can convert the stitch file to an outline and resize it, this can affect the embroidery design and sometimes it will distort it and editing will be needed to adjust it. Stitch files are geared for the embroidery machine to sew out the design and do not contain data for outline editing. OUTLINE FILES When working with outline files you can edit and resize the design and it will make changes and compensate for resizing. Outline files are extremely flexible however not all outline files are created equally. Some files like POF, PED, KWK and CND also contain outline information but their not a PXF file. These files only contain portions of the outline data, and can be edited but have limitations. NOTE PXF files in Tajima DGML by Pulse are a Unified file format , they include the stitch information and the outline information. Some customers will have PXF files that they cannot edit as they have saved a DST file as a PXF file, and its not the same thing, Just because you can paint an apple orange doesn't make it an orange its still an apple painted orange. A DST files saved as a PXF will steel be a DST file.   Author: Frank Prokator

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Text Embroidery Effects

Text Effects Drop Shadows and Simple Borders Adding A Drop Shadow 1. Start with a NEW page in your Tajima Pulse version 14 Go to " New File " Choose " Blank Design" Click " Ok " 2. Click on your line angle text tool . 3. Enter in the name " John " it should be about 1 inch tall and about 3 inches long or proportional. 4. Now we can add the Drop Shadow, Select the text on your screen
Go to the properties tab on the right
Scroll down to where it say
" Auto Shadow " Check the box beside " Drop Shadow "
You will need to set the offset
Change the X offset to 0.05
Change the Y offset to 0.05
Change the thread color to 2 or desired
Adding A Border to Text (Simple) This technique is designed for Tajima DGML by Pulse Version 14 Maestro users, while you can if you know how to digitize you can accomplish adding a border to a font generally its quite a bit of work. The difference between this option and the simple is this make a steil border and the simple add a satin stitch underneath, this option only works with a limited number of fonts. 1. Start with a NEW page in your version 14 Go to " New File " Choose " Blank Design" Click " Ok " 2. Click on your line angle text tool . 3. Enter in the name " John " it should be about 1 inch tall and about 3 inches long or proportional. 4. Now we can add the border , Select the text on your screen Go to the properties tab on the right Scroll down to where it say " Fill Border" Check Add Border Settings Change the Border offset to 0.03"
Change the Border Color to Red
Change the Border thickness to 0.03
Now you know how to add special effects to standard fonts, depending on the font the results may vary and depending on your level the option may or may not be available. This tool can be an asset to anyone that needs to add a border to text , while its not a Steil border it gives the illusion that of a border. It can save you an hour of embroidery digitizing by a few simple clicks. Charge Extra for adding a border to text. Samples with Borders Look at these popular fonts, Heather , Marker Brantford. Author Frank Prokator

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Embroidery experience: Digitizing Corners

Digitizing Corners Traditionally for most of us we are self taught when it comes to techniques and how to punch, there are general course available that teach us how to use the embroidery digitizing software and some specialty course but very few delve into the advanced options. This topic is one of those advance options as we will take a look at the type of corners available, embroidery software settings for cornering and how to manually adjust corners and the effects of cornering. Types of corners There are several types of corners used in the embroidery field; Auto-Turn Cornering Mitered Cornering Hand Sewn Cornering Capped Cornering   Auto Turned Corners Generally in most designs you will often see the auto turned style of corner, where the corner is used at right or obtuse angles, they allow for the angle lines to be placed in a manner that they can curve in a natural fashion. Below is an auto turned corner.   Mitered Style Corners Generally mitered corners are used when the corner is really acute or tight angles or when your working with small lettering. The example below is primitive , normally a mitered corner would over lap a bit so they do not pull apart or leave gaps.   Hand Sewn Corners You would thing that this is not ideal but there are a lot of fonts out their that use this cornering method. Here is an exampled of the letter "V" with the hand sewn corner.   Capped Corners Capped corners is a way of hiding the dividing lines when sewing a corner, and sometimes they use a high bread corner like on this font It caps the top but then mitered part of it too.   Terminology There are several terms that you will need to understand when working with corners. Angle Lines Are lines with beads on either side the give the direction to how the stitches are to be sewn.   Angle Line Tool The angle line tools allows you to select and manipulate or draw angle lines on the embroidery designs. Works with Beads. See the tool below.   Beads The beads are line nodes or black dots on when end of the angle lines, they can me moved by clicking on them with the Angle Line Tool.   Beads Tools This tool turns on the beads so that you can view them and be able to edit them.   Tips for Cornering When you use angle lines to go around the corner give the stitch time to travel around the corner try not to force it into a small area as it will cause the stitches to bunch up and it will have a greater tendency to cause puckering on some fabrics. Usually you will see puckering when a corner has too many stitches and no short stitches . This is very common with digitizers that are newer and that is why a lot of design opt for using a miter corner or a capped corner or a combination of them both. If you your using a corner like a mitered make sure you over lap part of the design or gaps will appear and it will look shabby. Do not get angle line happy, some digitizer will tend to put too many angle lines and its not necessary. Typically you need one angle line near the start on the column one about 1/4 inch from a corner on either side with a slight angle to it and one near the end, on circles four or five is all that's necessary. Settings When using steil stitches you will need to watch how it tries to do a corner and there is some simple fixes that can help you. Here is a example of steil of the letter M where the circles are. You can edit the steil to correct the wrap around the corners , this is often needed on applique style fonts that have a steil border or outline fonts and other embroidery designs where steil is used. Splitting Anchors Typically what you can do this by using the vertex select tool drawing a small box around the area this will highlight the anchors, right click on the anchor you want to separate, choose separate anchor.   Here is what the results will look like. Very much improved. This will help on any steil border. On satin stitches you cane either edit your angle embroidery stitches or slice it or cap it to get the same look. When doing satin stitches you want your right angle corners to auto short stitch this is seen below, this will not pucker. However if you do not take this into consideration when cornering with the satin tool you will end up with stitches like this. In this examples all the needle penetrations are very tight too many stitches in one area will cause puckering on nylon, satin and delicate fabrics. Note: For digitizers you need to master how to corner the design properly, watch how you put your angle lines down, try not to put them so close together the software will try to space the corners out, when your using a satin style stitch, as long as you do not force to many angle lines on an area. Tip .. Go to your local fabric store pick up some satin and use this to practice making corners, this is one of the fabric that will pucker if you do not do your corner, if you master it on this fabric all other fabrics will sew out correctly.   Author: Frank Prokator

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Embroidery experience: Digitizing Patterns

  Digitizing Technique When you start to digitize or whether you have been embroidery digitizing for a while we seem to all develop bad habits. One problem I see with designs is they all look the same, There are quite a few different techniques that we can apply to designs, to give the design a bit of lift or texture. In the past we have covered Blending, Advanced Blending , Blending Applications. However there are lots of ways to add depth to a design. Often design will have basic stitch types like satin stitches, or fill stitches and while there is a place for these I would recommend you experiment with newer techniques.. Lets take a look a leaves or peddles there are quite a few different techniques that can be used. Please note not all levels will have all these tools check with your distributor.   The above stitch types can be add dimension to your embroidery designs in addition you can add a bit of flare by introducing another layer to the design, this is another way to add depth to a design, this also can be labelled blending, is very simple to do by just putting another layer over top of the other. I recommend playing around with the density to find the look your looking for. Also by changing the fill pattern , density and or stitch length or in some cases spacing of the fill or satin like in the fractal fill or cascade fill to will adjust the density. ( See Below ) When working with any type of stitches you can further change the effect by changing how the edge looks on a fill or satin stitch, do take a look at the settings here are the four types of connections for the edge of each embroidery pattern. This controls how ruff the out side edge is going to be stitched, and can have an impact on how it looks.   The ends will also have an impact on how the pattern sew up.. or how smooth the edge of the embroidery design is. Another great tool that most of you have if you have a embroidery digitizing program is the run stitch, this is a very versatile tool , although often its over looked, It can be used to make a wide range of patterns, from the basic run, bean, half been and programmed run. this embroidery stitch type can also be used to reduce trims by connecting items with a manual line from a section to another section, it can also be used for manual underlay, and it can be used for decorative stitches on top of a fill or satin to add detail to the design. This tools is very simple to use, for a sharper points or more detail reduce the stitch length, for large areas increase it. If you have a run tool you can make any of the other stitch types. There are hundreds of possible combinations, settings and textures you can make as long as you explore your software, try new things sew them up you will be amazed as some textures you can make.   Author: Frank Prokator

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Embroidery experience: Making Custom Fonts


In last week article we are going to take you through the steps of making your own College font, with TAJIMA DGML by Pulse 14 , however the process is similar in Tajima DGML by Pulse 13, and DG15. 1. Start a New Blank document in your embroidery digitizing program. 2. Goto tools , Manage and click on Fonts , and click on New at the bottom left of the pop up window..   When you click the NEW option underlined in red above , you will need to put in your name or company name, choose what settings you want , I always have it contain outlines, use bottom for baseline and leave the other options untouched.   I recommend for your first couple of fonts using the option of TTF (True Type Font) there are other options if you want to create your own individual letters you can make them and turn them into fonts too. But for this tutorial we will use TTF Fonts.   Next you will need to select your fonts , I am using HIGH SCHOOL USA SERIF its a free font TTF font from Font Space. Then you can click next and high light all the upper case, lower case and special characters you want your font to have. Click Next.   On the next page I recommend that you select all the options.   Now click Finished at it will start to add the charaters to the font, and when its finished they will show up in your window like the example below.   Sometimes you will get lucky and not have to edit any or only a few letters, now we can turn the 3d view on and take a closer look at some of the letters. To view individual letters double click them and it will open up into a new window. Never delete the extent boxes or the artwork..   In this screen I always check the angle lines and make sure each letter is correct, you edit them just like any other embroidery designs. Close and save the work and repeat this process until all letter have been proofed.   ADD CHARACTERS As long as you own the rights to the font you can add more characters to the font. Pulse fonts are secured and you cannot edit them. PACK THE FONT This refers to the final step of the font making it active in your software, any changes made you will need to pack the font to update them. FONT PROPERTIES This is where you can change the internal setting spacing of the fonts and other parameters. KERNING THE LETTERS This option is non commonly used, its for advanced users that understand the extent boxes, and it require knowing the hexdecimal code and being able to load the font file to the kerning then you can go in and set the spacing between two letter. Most fonts do not need this.. with the exception of Fancy fonts , Chenille fonts or Monogram fonts. Reference letter, In every font you should pick the widest letter or number and make it the reference letter this is for kerning and spacing of all the letter, Normally the W or M are the widest letters in the Font so right click on the W and choose set as reference letter.   Now we are ready to save the pack the font, save the font and exit the embroidery digitizing software. Open the software up, goto a new document add some text and choose the font you made. And now your ready to add some pull comp underlay and you can start testing the font. Congratulations !   Author: Frank Prokator

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Hooping Tips n Tricks


In the embroidery industry there are a many types of embroidery hoops and often we do not invest in specialty hoops due to the cost. Today we are going to take a look at some hoops types, pros and cons and then we are going to look at hoop marks and how to remove them. Most shop have 2 sets of plastic hoops that come with their machines, and usually several different sizes. The plastic hoops work great general embroidery, if you find that you are hooping bags or hard to hoop items you may want to look at some of the alternative hoops. Plastic Hoops Standard hoops with most machines, general purpose hoops.   Wooden Hoops Great for thicker materials come in same sizes as the plastic hoops, general purpose   Hoop Master Great assistant tool for placement and keeping the hoops straight when hooping, Works with plastic hoops, wooden hoops and magnetic hoops. See Below   Hoop Tech Frame Great for hooping thicker materials like bags, straps and general purpose items spring loaded and leaves no marks on the fabric. impossible to get hoop marks or hoop burn. See above Magnetic Hoops These are becoming more common, I have replaced my hoop tech frame with magnetic hoops as I can hoop a wider selection of products easier than both the hoop tech frames and conventional hoops. Great tool in addition to standard hoops. Rules for hooping garments Never move the garment when hooping. Never adjust the screw while the garment is hooped. Never force the hoop onto a fabric Choose the closets size hoop for the design. Allow space for the presser foot. Use the smallest hoop that fits the design   Backing When hooping items you should make sure the backing covered by all sides of the hoop, especially on hard to hoop items. I know many shops that use (2) pieces of small for doing names and small logos or using (1) large piece and (1) scrap piece for extra support, Their is no set rule but if your having problems use a large piece of backing. Hoop Marks Hoop marks are very common in the embroidery industry and their are several ways on removing them, it depends on your personal preference, (1) I have worked in shops that use a soft brush and a spray bottle that you can use to encourage the fabric to its relaxed or natural shape, how this works is spray some water on the area where you have hoop marks, and then brush it in one direction this will often remove the hoop marks from the fabric. (2) The second method I see shops using is steam, but requires a clothing stand and steam machine, hang up the shirts and brush the steam wand over the affected area, This will often relax the fabric and remove the hoop marks from the garment area that's been affected. (3) The third way I do not use is a spray that goes onto the fabric, it can leave the fabric a bit sticky.   Hoop Burn This occurs when the fibers get crushed and or damaged in the hooping process, some causes are pulling on the garment while hooped sliding the fibers try the hoop will cause hoop burn , much like sliding your feet on the carpet friction burn, Another method is to tighten the screw while the garment is hooped, this will crush the fibers, and the last is forcing the hoop on a garment. Hoop burn on some fabrics is impossible to get out, if the fibres have been damaged then brushing them or steaming them will not fix the item. Hoop burn often appears shinny.. Tip ( Hooping hard to hoop items) Magnetic hoops and clamps will not cause hoop marks or burn as they are not tight on the garment the magnets hold the fabrin in place. I recommend using magnectic hoops on bags, sports jerseys, straps, and other hard to hoop items. Placement This is one subject that I get a lot of request on, placement is dependent on the garment or bag, it should look natural and first of all straight , aids like the hoop master make it easy to hoop items straight and also speeds up the process when hooping similar size garments. General rule is the placement of a left chest should be equal to the middle of the arm, On garments with pockets make the logo center with the pokey and half inch above the pocket.   Software hooping Guide In your Tajima Pulse embroidery digitizing software you also have an aid that will show you whether your design will fit in the hoop, this only works with standard size tajima hoops. Here are the steps Go to View Then click on Hoop Click Load Then choose the hoop     TIP If you suffer from arthritis and find that hooping your garments is causing you to have sore hands, wrist or arms than you may want to replace your hoops with magnetic hoops and it will save wear n tear on your hands and arms. Specialty Hoops In our industry especially with Tajima embroidery machines you have options of using a wider range of hoops for special occasions , I have some examples below. Tajima Auto Hoop For single head machines you can get a frame that bolts to the embroidery machine that works on a foot pedal. this hoop is great for large items like jersey ideal for applique and similar projects like blankets, curtains etc.   Sash Frames For some single head embroidery machines you can get a sash frame that allows you to sew large areas, special equipment is needed and ideal for working on curtains and larger area designs.   No Hoops For some strange reason back a few years ago I decided to attempt to embroider logo onto carpets for vehicles, general hoops wont work and clamps are not big enough and on single head machines you can embroider a fair size embroidery design onto carpets. You need a table for your machine some single head machines come with one, they you need some large flat bottom clamps to hook the carpet onto the arms that normally hold the frame.   Author: Frank Prokator

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Embroidery experience: Custom font making Part 1


Making Custom Fonts Preparing to make fonts Please note not all levels will have the option or making fonts, you will need the True Type Converter option on version like 12, 13 and the New Font option in version 14. If you do not have this option, then contact your distributor for clarification. This project is geared to the experienced digitizer that has a good understanding of the tools listed below, - Vector edit tools, including breaking apart shapes, vertex select tool, - Satin stitches tool being able to edit and convert artwork to stitches - Basic tools being able to copy and paste selections - Steil tool understanding the border option. - Font Propertes understanding of the font properties - Kerning tools understanding of tools for kerning, spacing - True Type Font This option only works with TTF fonts not OTF   Prior to actually making the fonts we are going to cover how to see if you have the option and or tools required to make the fonts, then we will look at some terminology and things you will need to fill in.   In Version 12 or 13 the options is called True Type Converter   In TAJIMA DGML by Pulse Version 14 and TAJIMA DG15 the option is under a new name and area.   If you have the options it will allow you to make a font , if the option is greed out or not available usually means you do not have the option on your level. Terminology for Setting Up Fonts Font Name A name that you would like to appear in your drop down list Version The revision of the font, Author The company or person whom made the font. Font Type The style of the font , Normal Regular fonts ( Default ) Design Where the design may have various colors or segments Two color Traditional two color fonts Monogram Additional rules apply Chenille For chenille users Chenille Outline Chenille outline designs only Color Blend For blended fonts Exposed settings For for options in Version 14 Default Space The Default Letter Space is 1/20 the width of your reference letter. Space bar size The Space bar unit is 1/20 the width of your reference letter. Use segments as extents The boundaries of the segments Contains Outlines Used to be able to add border to the text version 14 users. Unite Outlines Designed for Chenille users , must have the option.. Right to Left For making fonts sew from center our properly. In general these options are basically how the font will behave, one you make the font you will need to test, sew it out at both the minimum size and the max size that you want the font to be geared for. ( Chenille Users) making fonts is very difficult and additional rules apply to making fonts for that type of application, Rules for making fonts with the TTF converter 1. Font conversion mainly work with TTF ( True Type Fonts) 2. All fonts should be made relative to the size limitation of the satin stitches, 3. Never delete the extent boxes as that's how the digitizng software spaces the letters 4. The font should be kept within the extent boxes or very close to that size as the spacing is set by the extent boxes 5. Never delete the original font artwork as it may be needed to fix the artwork or for special function of the embroidery digitizing software. 6, Draw the stitches to the size they are to be drawn at, remember the stitch limitations 7. When setting the reference letter recommend using the M or W to set the width as they are typically the widest letters. 8. Choose a distinctive name that describes the font. 9. After all edits close the edit window it should save the font 10. You can pick the sew sequence of the font, color sequence and other options depending on the font. 11. The True Type Converter can also be used to edit your embroidery fonts on future edits. 12. Its easier to add all the letters at the beginning and delete them later if not wanted. 13. Making monongram fonts require a different process to account for the sequence of the letters. The raps on Part 1 of making your own fonts, We will continue in part to in setting up the embroidery digitizing software and guide you into making your own fonts, on average the initial process takes a few minutes to setup, editing each font takes a few hours, and the troubleshooting or sewing up samples takes the longest. This is great tool if you need a TTF font comparison for a customer that you do a lot of work for. I make fonts that are differnet than what I have in the software but which I commonly use, This font was made for one of my customers yet I have found the need for sports teams that want an embroidered logo, I also made one that uses applique so I can use it on sport jerseys. This font only had capital letters. We will go through making a 1 color college font in part 2 of this tutorial . Author: Frank Prokator

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Learning series How to make Patches in Tajima DGML by Pulse


Patches Do you tremble when a customer comes in and asks you to do embroidery patches, patches is not as difficult as it may seem, but even if you do not want to digitize and make the patches your self you can out source the patches to companies that specialize in that sort of thing. Today we will take a look at digitizing tips for patches, supplies you will need and general information about patches. Equipment and supplies needed   12 x 12 hoop or 20 x 28 hoop tearaway backing (optional) Color of twill for the fabric Sheet of Heat n Press Glue Frabic fray check glue heat press or industrial iron Digitiizng the embroidery design   In the example below I have made a karate style patch with a black fill , white fill for the karate man, a run stitch for his outline and satin stitch for the lettering , and using the Pulse Font Judo Kick for the text. The border is a steil stitch with a density of 85 spi and has perpendicular and zig zag underlay.   In Tajima DGML by Pulse Version 14 or Tajima DG15 the embroidery digitizing software comes with a utility to make embroidered patches, and its fairly easy to do and works with a wide range of embroidery design types,   1. Digitize the file, save it to your PC 2. Goto File New , 3. CLICK on the PATCHES icon and a wizard will come up. 3. Once the file has been generated then we can goto through the process for hooping your fabric. I would recommend that you hoop the twill by itself but if you want backing to stabilize the twill use tearaway. 4. Load the embroidery design on your machine , center the embroidery designs and trace to make sure it fits. 5. Embroider the patches. 6. Remove from hoop , press to flatten the patches, ( recommend at heat press @ 320 degrees for 5 seconds 7. With some Fray check or clear glue , coat the edge of the threads around the patch. 8. Tear away the backing 9. Cut them into smaller pieces, and heat press Heat n Bond or similar glue material using a heat press for 10 seconds. @ 320 degrees 10. Trim around the steil stitch as close as possible, 11 . With the Fray Glue go around the edge to seal up any loose ends, repeat for all the patches..   Thats how easy it is to make a patch.

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Embroidery experience: Digitzing Borders

This week we are going to look at digitizing borders for your embroidery designs, there are some methods and tools you can use to make the borders with, compensation and underlay types you should be using. METHODS There are two types of borders that you will need to make , the uniform border, that is the same thickness around the machine embroidery design and the variable border which changed thickness. Uniform Border.. This type of border tends to be doing around embroidery patches or similar embroidery designs, this border can be made with a steil stitch or a satin stitch . Variable Border This type you will need to use the satin stitch to make the border. There are (2) main methods for making either of the embroidery stitches.. (1) being the freehand mode drawing the shape manually. and the (2) is converting it from artwork. For shapes like circles and very uniform objects i use the vector tools to make the shape and then convert it to stitches, but it will depend on the shape. BACKGROUND To better understand the different thickness , I recommend you sew out a sample of the different embroidery stitches on the fabric your digitizing for to get an understanding of how thick the end result will be. When sewing your samples out make sure you have some compensation and underlay for the stitches as it will affect the size and clarity of the stitch. UNDERLAY & COMPENSATION When sewing out border stitches or any column stitch its recommended that you use an underlay that's opposite to the direction of the stitches. This will have make the column push out evenly, if you use a zig zag stitch the column will often become tighter and shrink when embroidering. Its also important to add enough compensation for the shrinkage of the stitch. UNDERLAY TYPES Below is an example of the different underlays that you will have available in your software. BORDER LAYERS Depending on the design you may want to put your border onto or on the bottom of the embroidery design, i often use it to smooth out uneven stitches like in the example below..Fills often leave an unfinished edge and a satin or a steil can clean that up to look smooth. When using the border underneath the thickness can be wider and have 3/4 of the border under the design and only 1/4 sticking out to blend with the design. When using it on top of the design you will need to make sure its hides the design when embroidered often it will gap between the border and a fill as the push and pull effect especially in corners. Make sure your artwork is clear enough that you can see the borders on the design as it will often dictate whether you put it on top or underneath the logo, some borders are decorative and others are functional. You often will need to sew out the design to page the thickness of the border. TRICK I often will add a manual underlay to the fill and the border, this helps prevent the fill from detaching from the border on some sew outs. See Below. This can be made with the run toll or a complex fill with very low density, I would make this underlay opposite the fill stitches. This causes the underlays to over lap building a better foundation for the top stitches. This raps up this blog on adding borders, sew out the different steil stitches and keep it on hand when your embroidery digitizing for your logos it will be a great guide. Author: Frank Prokator

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Tip and Tricks Treading on Disaster


TREADING on DISASTER I wen to a customers shop over the Holidays and he expressed concern that he was having quite a few thread breaks and other issues of late in his shop, and I wanted to see why, they embroidery designs he has run worked for previously on his equipment and he mention he having a lot of issue now. I got their and he said they added the screen printing business several month ago to their shop and the printing press is very close to the embroidery area. I said this is a problem.. If its not causing you issue now it will down the road. When you screen print you often use a lot of are sol and chemicals which also put a film on items in the environment. I took a look at the machine and the threads on the wall and they all had a film on it. I told him he was treading on disaster, the environment is and will impact his embroidery machine. ENVIRONMENT The environment for any embroidery machine should be clean as possible as the needles and embroidery threads are very delicate. You should be cleaning the machines, tables and threads areas often as dust will build up in the area and impact your materials, and possibly your garments. I suggest that you keep the embroidery thread in boxes, or clear containers this will help minimize the dust on the threads. Did you know dust on the threads can cause tension issues , gumming up the top threading mechanism, dust can cause thread breaks and even broken needles if the particle is too large for the eye of the needle. You embroidery machine area should also be cleaned on a regular basis, this means wiping it down, oiling the machine and making sure its a clean environment. This will go a long way to helping your machine run smooth. THREADS Depending on the type of embroidery thread, and size of thread you use this could also effect your embroidering experience, Most shops use a polyester thread and its more durable and generally easier to use. Its a bit stronger than cotton threads, and sometimes cheaper. The average thread types for most shops is 40 wt this is the most common size, If you do a lot of small detail or letters you may have 50 wt or 60 wt thread on hand, if so you will need to be able to change the tension on your machine to accommodate the change, same goes if you use 20 wt or 30 wt thread you will need to be able to change your tension. TENSION Everyone needs to know how to adjust their machines but their is a simple test to check the machine , make a column stitch with no underlay or compensation for each needle of your machine, the columns should be a quarter inch thick and each column should be a different color, then sew each column out , flip it over and look at the image below and gauge the tension of each needle. Now its good leave it alone, if its too tight, loosen it with a quarter turn, if its too loose tighten it with a quarter turn. LEFT LOOSY, RIGHTY TIGHTY is the easiest way to remember your tension guides. Check your machine manual for adjusting the thread on the machine as each machine may be a bit different. METALLIC THREADS When working with Metallic threads you will also need to loosen your tension as they need a little more give as they often have a fleck embedded in the twine and it doesn't have the same give as a polyester thread. Use the above guide to set your tension for specialty embroidery threads. NEEDLES When on customer sites I often ask them when the last time they change their needles, I often get when they break,, A needle can drastically effect the clarity of your work, as well the sharpness of the machine embroidery design, a dull needle will often tear through the fabric instead of spreading the fibers, this can affect quality, thread breaks, and more, There are also different tips of the needles, different sizes and different size holes, which all can impact using embroidery threads. Important Points to Remember Needles DO NOT last forever, they should be replaced approximately every 8 hours The eye of the needle should be 40% larger than the diameter of the thread When going to a larger size of thread, a larger needle should be used Use the appropriate needle for the type of fabric being sewn When using metalic thread use a larger eyed needle   TROUBLE SHOOTING NEEDLE ISSUES UPPER THREAD BREAKS, Check the upper thread path, tension is incorrect or replace needle BOBBIN THREAD BREAKS, Replace bobbin, check bobbin tension, check upper thread path SKIPPED STITCHES Check upper thread path, change needle , do tension test, check size of needle FRAYED STITCHES Eye of the need clogged or too small, upper thread caught check path, remove a meter of thread, THREADS LOOSE ON BOBBIN SIDE This is often caused by poor tension or improperly squenced upper thread path. BOBBIN THREAD SHOWING ON TOP This can occur if the bobbin tension is too tight compared to the upper tension, check bobbin tension and upper tension using the tension test. FABRIC PUCKERING A design that puckers the fabric can be caused by being poorly digitized, the fabric as nylon tends to pucker, and or can be caused by wrong tension usually too tight of a upper thread tension. Check bobbin tension and make sure your using the right backing for the material. NEEDLE SIZES Here is a chart of what size of needles work with the different embroidery threads.. OVERVIEW A clean shop and work area will help you and your embroidery machine, testing the tension on a regular basis will also help tabs on it to avoid disasters on jobs. If you have not changed your needles and you do a lot of embroidery starting up the New Year you may want to replace them all.   Author: Frank Prokator

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Embroidery experience: Blends Ideas for the Real World


In this article we will look at how to use the blends for the real world and how you can use previous techniques from earlier blogs. We will look at a couple different examples, and the trick is to put the underlay on the first layer only as all the other layers will generally sit on top.   Simple Fly Fish Hook with Blends Step 1 . Lay the underlay down using a lattice to hold the shape while layering the other stitches. In the above image you can see we created the underlay to be similar to full lattice for the shape, as their is no fill to put the underlay against. You can use a run stitch to make the stitches in columns.   Step 2. Now we add the 2nd layer stitches , usually a base stitch at 30-40 spi to give it some coverage. Step 3. Now we add the second color, we try to make the stitches in the opposite direction so the penetrate the design in a different way then the base layer. this will cover a portion of the design. Density should be between 20-40 spi   Step 4 . The second color layer will introduce another color to the design over lapping the first color and the base. the density should be between 30-45 spi   Step 5 The detail layer, this is not so much a blend layer but to add distinctive detail to the machine embroidery designs and elements that need to be added to give the embroidery design structure or completion. This final layer on the hook should have a higher density than the other portions. 45-55 spi   Bring it all together and you get a very nice and simple design. This design used the following style of stitches run stitches, satin stitches, complex fill stitches, the embroidery effects were created with simple stitches and this embroidery design can be made with any the creator, illustrator extreme or maestro level.   Here is another example that can be applied to leaves, wings, and more..   Step 1 Put down an underlay stitch, manual or automatic on the first layer, manual was done with a RUN stitch as seen below. its quite easy load your artwork, contour trace with the run tool and place various stitches across the grain of your fill. you always want the underlay going opposite the top stitches for this style of embroidery design.   Step 2 , Layer your fill slightly bigger than the underlay level, if your using the automatic fill tool and underlay choose your underlay to be .02 inch inset put a contour and lattice underlay on the embroidery designs and stitches at 45-90 degree angle. The density of this should be between 55-70 spi as only one color going down.   Step 3 Blends for detail , the density of the blend should be 15 -20 spi your only adding detail no underlay on this layer as it will show up and you do not want that. This was made with a simple satin tool with a random pattern.   Step 4 , Detail Layer, this is usually done with runs, satins or steal stitches to define the shape, add detail and hide the loose endes of a fill. Density on this stitch would be 55-70 spi and will have underlay using a perpendicular again it goes across the grain of the stitches.   Final Design... This style of blend can be used for a wide range of embroidery designs, its simple fast and easy to replicate.   Author: Frank Prokator

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Introducting Tajima DG15 by Pulse


The new Tajima DG15 uses the same platform as Tajima DGML by Pulse Version 14 so the look and feel of the layout should seem quite familiar for those migrating over from version 14. If your migrating over from version 11, 12, or 13 you may want to read the document on setting your embroidery digitizing software up as many tool bars, and settings are optional. While this version looks quite similar to Version 14 they have stepped up the usability of the platform to include some key components that make this version stand out. NEW FEATURE The first thing I noticed apron installing the digitizing software is I can view all the PXF files on my computer using Windows Explorer and or My Computer, the trick with this is the files need to have the a picture embedded in the file. This will go a long ways to helping me sort out the files..   Pulse Cloud The second new feature will apply to shop that are expanding or network their machines they included a few different tools to allow you to move files around. The biggest advantage would be Pulse Cloud which is included with Tajima DG15 By Pulse, this allows you to some key mobility options for network machines including; Key Features of Pulse Cloud Browse Designs from any Device • Constant access to all your designs from any mobile device Create New Designs • Use templates to create beautiful personalized embroidery designs Monitor Machine Status • Keep an eye on your production floor from anywhere Send to Machine • Send a design straight to your embroidery machine from the Pulse Cloud This new add on allows you to store, manage, and browse 100,000 of your embroidery designs on multiple devices through the Pulse Cloud service, included with Tajima DG15. It also allows you to edit embroidery design, create new embroidery designs, monitor your machines, send machine embroidery designs from your mobile device. Contact your distributor on how this can work for you.. I am not sure of the restrictions or how to set it up, I do know there is an app for mobile devices for Pulse Cloud. This feature also allows you to share free embroidery designs on popular social media feeds.   Drop Box This is another new option great for customer that have their embroidery machine at one location and their digitizing software at another location. You can store your designs and move them to the drop box and open them up and edit them and save back to the drop box.   New Monogram Wizard This is the first time they have made the wizard for monogramming very simple to use, its great for someone who doesn't digitize or wants a simple but powerful tool to use to make monograms, this tool works with both the monogram fonts or regular fonts and offers a wide selection of borders, decorations and placement options., you can also edit the font per digit in this utility On the left side you can select your placement or style of text , on the right side you can select the font and or size, you can also change the border and the design all through this wizard and standard on this product. I found it very easy to use and their over 15 text placement styles, Access to all your fonts in your embroidery digitizing software, color of the font and size. You can have each letter a separate font and color too which makes it nice. To change a frame you select the frame and you can scroll through over 25 frames and over 25 decorations for inside the frame. You can also choose no frame or no decoration, and you can edit the decorations independently. Touch Screen Support This new feature also allows those of you to have touch screen monitors to use them with the software, I do not have a touch screen so I am not sure how it works. But it could for some applications be easy to use. Vector Tool Improvements They have made some improvements to the vector tools which can make it easier to slice and edit curves much like in Corel Draw. Embroidery Machine Instruction This new version will also allow you to implement warning or special instruction to the embroidery machine including, speed limitation and or notes. Vertical Text Tool This allows you to put text up or down great for arms and pant legs,   Wave Fill Options They also now allow you to use complex fill and carved tiles with the wave tool allowing for better creation of flags in my view then programmed runs but it great tool for other applications too. Improvement to Quotation Tool They made some changed to how the quotation tool works, I do not use this as I have my own template for quoting jobs for customers, but for a beginner its a great way to price jobs for yourself. Supports Corel Draw Version 7 This latest version also supports the latest version of Corel. In review , I installed the software on Windows 7 64 Bit Premium Edition with no issues, it made all the necessary updates as it installed the program, it doesn't over right any existing version which I like as I make videos and documentation for all versions. Pulse Cloud is available on all the current levels and the levels have not changed they still include Composer, Creator, Illustrator Extreme, Artist Pulse and Maestro.

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Embroidery experience: Blending Part 3 Blending Applications

Blending Application In this section we will take a closer look at how to make and use blends, the shape depends on the method your using as not all methods will work for all the shapes. There are several tools that you can use to create blend with including the Satin Tool, Complex fill tool, Radial Fill Tool, Auto Blend Tool, and for Tajima Pulse version 14 users the density bead tool. We will look at the above tools and walk you through making blends and the settings for each tool.   Satin Tools Split Blend The satin tool split technique is useful when you want the embroidery pattern or fill to fit a shape or radiate out from a point, you can make the split as narrow as you can place the angle points or as wide as you want. For Tajima Pulse users this option is available to users from Creator to Maestro levels Version 11 or newer. The steps are below. Below I used contrasting colors.   Step 1 Draw your shape ( pressing enter or right clicking) Step 2 Add your angle lines ( be care full to grab the right side) Step 3 Generate the stitches ( pressing enter or right clicking) Step 4 Go upto the top and change the satin pattern to random fill Step 5 Go upto the top and change the density to 20 spi Step 6 Draw another fill shape 35 spi density in behind the stitches Satin Tools Basic The satin tool technique that generally for a one dementional shape. It works great for leaves and other similar type projects and its available for Tajima Pulse users this option is available to users from Creator to Maestro levels Version 11 or newer. The steps are below. I used a dark green blend with a light green fill .. Step 1 Draw your shape ( pressing enter or right clicking) Step 2 Add your angle lines and generate the stitches Step 3 Go upto the top and change the satin pattern to random fill Step 4 Go upto the top and change the density to 20 spi Step 5 Draw another fill shape 35 spi density in behind the stitches   Fill Tool Basic The fill tool technique is only to create basic blends or colors, that generally for a one dementional shape. It not as flexible when using this tool, and the only people who should use this is the Creator level , high levels should use some of the more advanced options.   Step 1 Draw your shape ( pressing enter or right clicking) Step 2 Add your angle lines and generate the stitches Step 3 Go up to the top and change the density to 15 spi Step 4 Draw another fill shape 35 spi density in behind the stitches Step 5 Re sequence the blend over top of the other fill.   Satin Tools with the Contour Option The satin tool with the contour option is useful when you want the pattern or fill to fit a shape and or follow the contour. This option is available on Tajima Illustrator Extreme Version 13 or higher , it allows you to add a bit more depth to a embroidery design.   Step 1 Draw your shape ( pressing enter or right clicking) Step 2 Add your angle lines and generate the stitches Step 3 Go upto the properties.. and goto the Satin Path/Column Effects page and check Contour Stitch Step 4 Change the density to 20 spi Step 5 Add a fill in behind the contour pattern and you have a very nice contour blend.   Radial Tool Blend Technique This tools is called a Radial fill but its basically a Satin stitch with a floating center point. It adds some demention to a design with the ability to move the point around to radiant outward. This option is only available in Tajima Illustrator Extreme with the Artistic Pack or the Maestro level . Its very useful when making eyes, flower and many other designs.   Step 1 Draw your shape ( pressing enter or right clicking) Step 2 Change the satin pattern to random, Step 3 Change the density to 20 spi Step 4 See the Bead in the center step 4 you can move this around see the difference step 3 vs 4 Step 5 Add a black background and change the fore ground color to red and you have a nice eye..   Auto Blend Tool   This tools is called a Radial fill but its basically a Satin stitch with a floating center point. It adds some demention to a embroidery design with the ability to move the point around to radiant outward. This option is only available available in Tajima Illustrator Extreme with the Artistic Pack or the Tajima Pulse Maestro level. This tools is great for sunsets or water fading into two colors together.   Step 1 Draw your filled shape ( pressing enter or right clicking to finalized) Step 2 Right click and choose Auto color blend a window will pop up Step 3 For the example we choose Linear increasing,black and linear decreasing Red and click ok Step 4 Then You right click and choose break up for the patterns to emerge. There are several different combinations for using this tool. Concave, Convex, Linear increasing and decreasing, Concave Starts gradually decreasing the density in a selected segment from the Maximum density value to the Normal density value. Then, begins gradually increasing the density from the Normal density value to the Maximum density value at the center of the selected segment. Convex Starts gradually increasing the density in a selected segment from the Normal density value to the Maximum density value. Then, begins gradually decreasing the density from the Maximum density value to the Normal density value at the center of the selected segment. Linear increasing Gradually increasing the density in a selected segment from the Normal density value to the Maximum density value. Linear decreasing Gradually decreasing the density in a selected segment from the Normal density value to the Maximum density value. Version 14 Density Beads for Fills   This tools is still new to me and it can be quite tricky to figure out the density, but it can give you an added demention to the above techniques. You will need the Maestro level to use this feature.   Step 1 Draw your shape ( pressing enter or right clicking) Step 2 Click on the Density Bead Tool and add a density bead to the line Step 3 Click on the pink density beads and click set density. Step 4 Use a negative value only -35 spi Results You have control over the density at each bead.   General Tips when working with Blends   Rule 1 Random or manual stitches will offer the most realism for blending layers. Rule 2 Play around with the density of both the top and lower segments for various results. Rule 3 Blends look best with 2 or more layers close to the color, like orange reds & yellows Rule 4 Add decorative stitches to the top of the embroidery design for more dimension to the design Rule 5 Remember to experiment with the different patterns   Author: Frank Prokator

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Embroidery experience: Blending Part 2 Advanced Blending Techniques

In this Blog we walk you try how to get various results in blending, you will need the Tajima Pulse Maestro option to be able to do this easily. You will need to sew the different patterns out to appropriate the different techniques offered below. Two Color Blend Technique I recommend that you make a solid background color, best works with similar colors like reds and orange or orange and yellow, but I have it down with blue and red so its easy to see. You will first need to make a shape , a box works for this test, make the background (blue) density between 30-55 spi and make the top stitching (red) as indicated below. You can either use a standard fill or a radial fill to get very different looks. When your working on flower embroidery designs or sunsets sometimes two color logos do not give you enough depth, adding a third color to the design will often give you more depth you also need to experiment with the different densities and angle lines for your embroidery project. Layer 1 is always the background layer. , then layer 2 add texture, and layer 3 is considered your top stitch. Below you will see the different fills densities, and angles, and compare the results. The technique is very simple ... 1. Make a shape as a fill. 2. Right click and goto properties 3. Go to complex fill , expand the selections 4. Go to density profile 5. Set the density to you choice 6. Its best if the different layers have different settings and different densities. Three Color Blend Technique When your working on flower embroidery designs or sunsets sometimes two color embroidery logos do not give you enough depth, adding a third color to the design will often give you more depth , you also need to experiment with the different densities and angle lines for your project. Steps 1. Make a fill of the area 2. Duplicate it 3 times. Layer 1 is always the background layer. , then layer 2 add texture, and layer 3 is considered your top stitch. Below you will see the different fills densities, and angles, and compare the results. The results are below , changing the angle stitches can drastically effect the embroidery design, it takes some getting used to and you really need to sew the samples out to appreciate the depth of the blending techniques. Remember when using blends , your total density of the 2 or 3 layers should be no more than 70 spi , each layer should have a density of 15 -35 spi. Author : Frank Prokator

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Embroidery experience: Blending Part 1 Introduction


Introduction to Blending Colors. In this blog we will introduce you to some terminology the you will need to understand to make blends possible. We will also explain the different methods for creating blends in your embroidery software. Terminology Density The density is a value of how close the stitches are to one another, there are few ways to measure it depending on the units you use. The three units are Stitches Per Inch (spi) Points (pts) Millimeters (mm) the standard is listed below. Standard density is 63.5 spi = 4 pts = .4 mm Absolute Density Is similar to WYSIWYG the value is a true value. With this option checked your density would be 63.5 spi , if you lower it , 55 spi it will show that. If you do not have this option checked your starting point will be 0 and if you want to go to 55 spi you would have to put in -8.5.. Traveling lines this is the line that connects part of a fill, often fills will divide at some point and re join you can manipulate this using your start and stop points. These lines often go through the center of the design, their is an option to force the to the outside I recommend using this option when blending fills. Blend Tool Depending on your version you may have an option to blend colors this is called the blend tool. This is standard in the TAJIMA Maestro Level Density Line Tool In version Tajima DGML by Pulse Version 14 and DG15 depending on the level you may have a icon called density line tool. This allows you to control the embroidery density at different increments of the blend. As you may know blending is a technique of layering two or more colors to get an effect of a blend, the digital world has been using blending for years however its not as common in embroidery. There are several different methods of blending that I am aware of. Blending with embroidery threads, or by layering one or more fills over each other. Another way to create an effect of a blend is to use the multimedia approach and add a image or vinyl behind the embroidery., which we covered in past blogs called multimedia designs. Blending with Embroidery Threads This technique is not new, it has been used in the home embroidery field for hundreds of years, and it allows you to create depth to a design. One option is to blend a heavy thread as a fill and covered by a top layer with a smaller thread. Another way to blend thread types is to have the blue fill going horizontal at 35 spit and the red fill going vertical at 25 spi when you sew them out like this it will blend the two colors creating an illusion of a third color, The Irish embroidery design use layers to blend the two colors together to get the effect of a pattern with the leaves, there is a light green background and a dark green layered on top. This technique can be applied to a wide range of designs and works best with similar colors. Samples of Blending Here are some samples, of types of blending that is available .. you can see the layers when zoomed in but remember the machine embroidery design is only a quarter of that size below. Blend Tool ( Maestro Level only ) For some of us we have a tool that allows us to create blends. This is a great tool for making the sunset fade into the water.. However it can be done manually its rather simple with this tool. Below is the Automatic tool for making blends. 1. Start a NEW document 2. With the eclipse tool draw a circle 5 inches You could also add greater depth by using two different weights of thread by doing this it will cause the top stitch to sit on top of the bottom stitch. 3. Convert the circle to a complex fill , right click or CTRL E to bring up the menu to convert too option appears. 4. Right Click on the fill and choose Auto.. and then select color blend and you will see the following . 5. Change the above setting to match the image and then click OK to save the settings 6. Then right click and choose Break up   Note I change the colors so its visible to blue and orange, as red and orange will be hard to see on the screen. There are a couple things I would recommend is - High light each segment and goto properties, - Goto complex fill effects and change the travelling route to the edge, this will get rid of the lines going through the middle of the embroidery design. Tips When working with blends they work best on contrasting colors that are closely related to each other, like light blue and dark blue, oranges and reds, orange and yellows, I recommend everyone make a blend and try different densities, angles and colors to experiment with the tools and develop and understanding how it cane be used.   Author: Frank Prokator

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Digitizing Single Color Embroidery Designs


When learning to digitize half the battle is knowing how to use the tools and what tools to use to get a desired look. Whether you have a basic digitizing level or the highest level possible if you do not know how to use the different tools you are no further ahead. In this blog we look at using the basic tools, including the RUN tool, satin tool and fill tool. I consider these the most simple of design as your only using one tool. When you get a grasp for this tool then you can start adding additional types of strokes .. If you have a some punching tools usually you will have the most basic of stitch tools in Tajima Pulse they call it a RUN Stitch however its a basic stitch , you place the points and set the stitch length, If you can learn to punch embroidery designs with this you will be able to add more detail with fewer stitches, and if you get good at it you can make a whole embroidery design with no trims. Here is a simple outline of a cat and dog dancing in the rain. You should be able to digitize this embroidery design with just the run tool. I would set the stitch length between .07 and .10 sometimes shorted on smaller detailed areas. The run tool should produce a stitch similar to the one below , basically its gets tacked down by the bobbin embroidery thread at specified by the stitch length,.   In the Tajima Pulse branded embroidery software you have another option on some levels it called a manual stitch this allows you to control the stitch length as it makes a stitch when you place each point, this is also known as stitch by stitch digitizing and is considered old school as you have control of each stitch. When looking at the image shown above you need to start at a place and try to finish at another place, If your new to embroidery digitizing I recommend you get in the rabbit of punching from the bottom up, and out from the center, its usually not a problem for left chest design but caps require it to reduce the push of the embroidery design. If you do it on most of your embroidery design it won't seem like a problem when you punch designs for caps and jacket backs. You will see a graph on the image 1 this is how I mark my designs to give me reference lines. Some people can eye ball it with out the lines.   Above in image 3 you will see where I have placed my points there is no set way you have to draw it the only thing you have to try to do is to keep the stitch length above .02 inch going smaller sometime will automatically get truncated by the software, Here is what the embroidery stitches look like zoomed in and out images 4 and 5.   The smaller the stitch length the sharper the corners and the more detail however it also increase the number of stitches in the design, so generally its a balancing act, Some times you may need to retrace your steps , in order to minimize trims. Take your time, map it out if you can ,and omit any detail that is too small to reproduce, you may also need to place more gaps in between the stitches than what you would need if you were printing this. I recommend at least 1 to 1 1/2 stitch widths. Halfway point of the design Image 6   When your down punching the design Image 7 Now you should be able to compare image 1 and image 7 before and after to see if you like the amount of detail that you have added. Now you can take this design and if you want add some satin or fills to it. Image 8   Or you can go 1 step further and make it a full color designs or leave it at a one color design. If you sew out the outline version no fills, you only need to add underlay to the satin style of stitches, if you add the fills in you will need to add a contour stitch to the fills and a lattice to and add some compensation to the fills and satin stitches, the run style stitches or programmed runs do not need any underlay or compensation.   Author: Frank Prokator

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Embroidery experience: Top Ten Digitizing Mistakes


Common Digitizing Mistakes In the embroidery industry their are thousands of machine embroidery digitizers trying to make a living , and digitizing in house, in this blog we are going to take a look at some of the common mistakes digitizers make when making embroidery designs. Issues from a poorly digitized design could be unnecessary trims, unnecessary jumps, too many color changes and not enough compensation, to dense, and the list goes on. 1. Lack of Planning, or Lack of Pathing This is usually seen on new embroidery digitizers as they may be able to draw the embroidery design and on screen it looks okay, but when they so it out your machine your embroidery machine jumps unnecessary and their are too many trims.. Making the sew out slower than it needs be. You will also likely to have simulated embroidery thread breaks caused by lack of lock stitches and or trimming on small letters. 2. No Underlay or wrong style for application This is one of the hardest things to learn is which underlay works best for the stitch types, the wrong underlay or no underlay can distort the design and cause a night mare while embroidering it, specially on different fabric types.   3. Improper compensation In embroidery this is one thing everyone should have an understanding, you need to know how much is enough vs too much or too little, a poorly digitzed embroidery design will either have underlay sticking out as the compensation was not right for the design, other issues is there is too much underlay and the embroidery designs is distorting. Below is a chart to gauge one aspect of the compensation factor, Elastisity. The other factors include, type of backing, type of underlay and design characteristics.   4. Improper Density This is another give away of a new digitizer, the design is bullet proof, means that the density is too, high often when using layers of embroidery thread you can reduce the density by 1/3 to compensate for the different layers, too little density and the underlay or garment will show through. The other factor is the fabric , towels need underlay to hold the nap down and bit more density than the standard to prevent the gaps where strands can poke through. 5. Stitch Direction This is one issue that is up to the designer, but I do not like flat embroidery designs where the fill type is the same through out the embroidery design, stitch angle gives the embroidery design character, and often will make the embroidery design look more attractive than all the stitches going the same way. In the design below the stitches in the wings are going horizontal and the body is going vertical. 6. No Lock Stitches Generally putting lock stitches can be optional on some materials however some will require it to make sure it doesn't unravel, I like it on jackets, knits and jersey material and especially on sports apparel or spandex. Having lock stitches will help prevent the stitches from unraveling. 7. Fill Types A problem with many digitizers they do not know how the fill types affect the embroidery design, years ago Tajima Pulse used to provide a book with a pattern of the different types of fills, this would give you a visual que on what the end result would look like, too many digitizers use the same old patterns for all their embroidery designs. I recommend choosing the fill type suited to the design. In the above design you can see a programmed fill used to add distinctive tire tracks, this is used in combination with fill to give it some depth and make it look realistic. 8 Stitch Lengths This can impact underlay when it sticks out from the sides of letters, or can be a cause to higher densities, and or coverage. Small letters you see this a lot, if a letter is 4 mm high and the stitch length is defaulted to .12" (3 mm) than the default settings is not going to work. .05" will drop the stitch length to 1.2 mm this will allow the underlay to conform to the smaller text sizes, not compensating for this the underlay will not cover the design, stick out or cause other distortion issues. 9. Wrong stitch type for width This is something you should as a embroidery digitizer have an idea, you will see issue like a satin stitch being too large causing loopy stitches, unnecessary trims, gaps in the design, or too dense for the area. We did cover some of these terms in the blog for Stitch types, but general Fills .04" to Infinite, Satin 03" to 40" Steils 03" to .20" runs stitches do not have a limitation except its one stitch after another except on program fills and they should be used like a fill. But you can adjust them to reduce the size. 10 Wrong application for design This is one that people often get wrong, ie a left chest design doesn't always work for caps as it pushes the design or distorts the machine embroidery design on the hat, hats generally require a embroidery design to sew out from the center to the left and center to the right to push in equal directions, other comparisons you would not want a embroidery design designed for knit to be used on nylon as you often see the design pucker.   Author: Frank Prokator

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Embroidery experience: Understanding Layers


When embroidery digitizing its very important that you have some artistic knowledge, even though you may not have any artwork back ground you should be able to look at most embroidery designs and determine what should be in the background and what should be in the fore ground. This is important as you it will give you an idea of which embroidery thread sequence to lay down first so it looks proportional. The first thing you need to do when looking at a embroidery design is determine back ground and fore ground sometimes this is very easy and other times it can be more challenging. On the design below you can see that there is no back ground but instead their are just two separate thread sequence, one being orange and one being black on this design it really doesn't matter the sequence it generally will sew well either way. The embroidery design below has a few different layers , it should be pretty easy to determine what the layers are ? Generally, I ask my self if their pieces that I will need to hide traveling stitches, so I do not have to trim and will it impact the sew ability of the design. I would normally sew the design from the center out I would start with the maroon color first.. Notice the travelling stitch this will be covered up by the second layer. It avoids me adding a trim to the design. The black layer will go down next .. Now you should not see that traveling line as the black fill has covered the evidence, when ever possible you will need to hide your stitches in the design by layers in front. The borders can be made on the same level as the text but I have separated them here to show you the different parts. Make sure the satin border is large enough to cover the stitches I recommend perpendicular underlay on borders and absolute compensations at .01 inch. Final embroidery design is below. Layers in a complex embroidery design this design has six layers and a lot more detail I first do the items that appear farther into the back ground, Take a look at this tractor below. Layer 1   Layer 2   Layer 3   Layer 4   Layer 5   Layer 6 Once the design is done then you can add compensation and underlay to the design.   Author: Frank Prokator

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Embroidery: Outside the box


In embroidery shops we all fall into a similar pattern, we stock a variety of standard towel gift sets for baby showers, some promotional products for companies , some screen printed t-shirts, a large embroidered jacket back and possibly some embroidered hats with various logos on them. I was guilty of this myself. Since opening up my new retail shop this past May I started thinking outside of the box on what I could decorate to make my work stand out. I went down to a local thrift store and picked up some garments that looked great on a mannequin and started to showcase different works.   Here are samples of traditional promotional items , including aprons, golf shirts, jackets, bags and hats are among the common promotional apparel items in most shops. The more you can do to show off your skills as an embroider the better, most of us know that our spouses love their purses and bags, I have found that this is a huge specialty item that I carry and or decorate for clients. Specialty items like purses do have challenges but the profits on embroidering these items as its custom or specialty. Another marketing item you will see at this time of year is embroidered towels, stockings, and custom blanket sets. Towels often are quiet affordable I sell them in a basket for baby showers, and themed products like that but can be for the sports fan, family towels or personalized towels, napkins and more. Presentation is key.. Embroidery designs by Urban Threads Alice in Wonderland Another way to think outside of the box is to showcase items that can be embroidered, I sell a similar sweater like this one for $100 , the sweater cost $12, and I embroider 10 location on the sweater, I did this on my personal embroidery machine. These machine embroidery designs only have 1500 stitches mainly run stitches very light but detailed and run great and look very nice on towels, napkins, sweaters. But it show cases where you can place embroidery, and looks great on the display rack.   Any of the items that you can embroider will make you stand out from the rest. It takes time yes but the rewards will pay off when customer come in to order custom items, I charge 50% more for logos on purses and specialty items, In addition for multiple logos on a single garment may be time consuming but the rewards pay off.   Author: Frank Prokator

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Embroidery Office Version 15.00 list of news


News in Embroidery Office Version 15.00 - New in this version File Menu redesigned. Application Button was replaced by a wider menu. The user interface of all the functions was improved. Start Page window redesigned, providing direct access to frequently used functions when opening the application. New function: Post embroidery design samples through Twitter. Several improvements in the organization of the ribbon bar. Improved thread/colors toolbar (embroidery). Thread/Colors palette window redesigned. Mark favorite embroidery thread codes. Improved hotfix beads toolbar (rhinestone, sequin, etc). Stones/Sequins palette redefined for faster selection. Mark the most used beads as favorites. New tool: Mathematics Shapes for creating new shapes (lines or areas) specifying just numerical values. New capture mode: Freehand to create embroidery objects. New capture mode: Freehand to create stones / sequins objects. Patterns Library redesigned. Programmable Stitches Library redesigned. Textures Library redesigned. Fonts Library redesigned. Stitch Styles Library redesigned. Hoops Library redesigned. Smart Design Improved, Fast mode switching: embroidery/hotfix editing, embroidery/hotfix creating, auto-digitizing vectors. Improved dialog boxes Open / Save Documents: Direct access to cloud-drives, access to the list of recently used folders. Export to file format TBF (embroidery). Export module for Hotfix redesigned: More functionality and equipment compatibility. Improved Information Card (Infocard), also presenting Hotfix features (stones and sequins). Estimated Costs / Prices for Hotfix (stones and sequins). New effects in the optional HF Effects (globe, grid, etc). New feature (optional) Team Names for Hotfix (stones and sequins). Solve Overlaps tool Improved (hotfix). Conversion from Embroidery objects to Hotfix objects and vice versa. Hotfix Ring In Fill improved: Preset Styles, density per layer, repetition control. New Hotfix style: Hotfix Ring Out (included in the optional Advanced HF Fill Pack).  

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