Part 4 of the Dream Machine 2 + Scan n Cut DX225 series – the grand stitching finale!

This was a fun project to work on!  It’s so creative, and the sky’s the limit!!

In the first video, we created an applique design from an existing design on the Dream Machine – we did some outlines and some satin stitches offset so we don’t cover up the beautiful embroidery AND we put it all together in the correct order.  Once we finished this part, we set up the applique to send to the Scan N Cut DX225 cutter!  We added a bit of extra space around the design – which turned out to be too much space, LOL) and cut the fabric.  We used the special thin fabric blade and cut it perfectly!  I also did an experiment with the new GudyStic temporary adhesive that I love so much – and I got decent results – but I will be working with it more to come up with some better ideas.

In Part 4, the video below, we take all of our applique design components – the placement stitch, the tack down stitch and the satin stitch for the applique as well as the original design plus the pre-cut applique pieces and put it all together at McDreamy (my Dream Machine 2).  Watch the video and see what you can accomplish with a little bit of imagination and embroidery technology!!

Learn. Stitch. Smile

Be confident in every stitch!!

Sue

YOU FLOAT A BOAT, NOT STABILIZER – Hooping skills 101

Many years ago, when I was just starting with embroidery I read some information about embroidery and running a successful business, and the thing I remember most was this:
“YOU ARE ONLY AS GOOD AS YOUR HOOPING SKILLS”
That made a lot of sense to me at the time, but I didn’t realize the vast importance of this statement. For example, you can have a beautiful design that looks amazing on the computer, and when you stitch it out, it looks terrible. Why? It all comes down to your hooping skills! Hooping skills do not mean just hooping things straight or hooping difficult items, hooping skills also means knowing the proper stabilization for your items that you are embroidering. Hooping skills makes the difference between OK embroidery and WOW embroidery. Which brings us to the topic of today’s blog: FLOATING STABILIZER.
The message I would like to get across is “floating is for boats, not for stabilizer”. This is what I hear often in many, many groups “ I hooped 1 layer of cutaway and floated tearaway, and it still looks awful”. Yes, yes it will because that piece of tearaway is doing zero good. ZERO. Other than making your embroidery thicker, and possibly pulling down the stitches on the top to compensate for the thickness, floating is not doing any good.
Let’s look at this logically. What is stabilizer? Why do we even use stabilizer? Stablizer is a type of material that makes the pretty material more stable for you to embroider on. That is the key there, STABLE – meaning strong and sturdy. If you are floating something and not hooping it, how is it helping to make your fabric more stable? That floated piece is not holding your fabric still – it’s floating around under your hoop…floating free, like the wind, not providing stability to anything! If you hoop two layers of tearaway or hoop 1 layer of tearaway and float a second, which one do you think will be better? Guaranteed it is the 2 hooped layers because they are helping to make the embroidery more stable and strong, which translates into clear and perfectly placed embroidery.

Some designs that you may have will have a small black outline to them. And most of the time when you stitch this out, that small black outline will be out of registration. Why? Because the material wasn’t stable enough for the embroidery, that’s why! When things go out of registration it is because the fabric has MOVED because it isn’t stable enough. Having the material move 2mm to the left is going to be an issue for that small black line! And, if that line is out of registration, it will make your whole embroidery design look awful. The solution is not to blame the digitizer as most do, the solution is to provide more stability to your fabric in the hoop!
One of the things I spend my “free” time doing is teaching  people the proper way of embroidery so that especially on your own designs, you get amazing results. People float all of the time, and some digitizers are putting floating in their instructions…and you are setting your customers up for a fail, and they will complain, and you are not doing your digitizing any justice by instructing people to float stabilizer to try and make your work look better. For best results, HOOP IT.

You can take your cues from things that are right in front of you. For example, Hatch and other embroidery software  has this cool feature where you can pick a fabric type (cotton, leather, polyester) and Hatch will actually tell you what that fabric requires for stabilizers!! It is all right in front of you!! And please take note, not one of the stabilizer recommendations say to float anything – not a single one.

Ahhhh, the answer is right there!!

So what does that tell you? That tells you that the professional embroiderers that have been the top of the embroidery business for 30 years are not recommending floating any stabilizer!!! Why would you not follow their recommendations? (I mean that jokingly, of course, don’t take me too seriously here, but it is a good question!!) Wilcom knows their stuff, they have been doing it, and doing it well for 30 years, and they are the top of the “embroidery food chain” for a reason. So listen to them, and stop floating anything. You can float a boat, or a duck can float, but please don’t float your stabilizer!!

Hooping skills include being able to hoop properly, with the right tension, having the hoop tight enough, placement of the hoop so that the embroidery is straight AND USING THE RIGHT STABILIZER. And all of these things make a big difference to your embroidery.
Let’s say it one more time together “YOU ARE ONLY AS GOOD AS YOUR HOOPING SKILLS “…. And say that to yourself each and every time you embroider a design – are my hooping skills correct? Do I need to do some research on what kind of stabilizer is correct? And when you have a design that has stitched and doesn’t look quite right, it may be the digitizer, but more often than not, it’s user error for lack of the correct stabilizer.
Let’s do this right – do not float stabilizer and let’s have some awesome embroidery stitching out!

Hooping skills: your embroidery will thank you!
Happy Digitizing!

Sue

aka The Economical Embroiderer

Want to learn more?  check out my YouTube channel OMLEmbroidery.  Everything I do is free. Yep, FREE.  100 + videos and counting. Learn and have fun.

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A Little Hatch Embroidery Inspiration

I do spend quite a bit of time working on videos, blogs and answering tons and tons of questions.   I am absolutely not complaining, I do all of these things because I want to, not because I have to or that its my job.  I already have a full time + job making patches.  Embroidery has always been a passion of mine, and I am always happy to share my experiences as much as possible.

I really do appreciate all of the likes and subscribers on Youtube – that keeps me going!  Not to mention all of the likes, shares and thank you notes on Facebook – that also keeps me going too and I love it all!!  I would like to have 10 zillion subscribers and 10 zillion likes, LOL.  OK, well 10 zillion is a big number – but I plan on doing something grand if we ever reach 10,000 likes or subscribers.  I like to think BIG.

Every once in a while someone will share their story.  As you all know by now, here at OML Embroidery we are all about embroidery and the different software that we use.  I do like them all, but the newest one Hatch has my attention for a few reasons – its a very powerful program, its easy to use and its not missing any big things in it – everything you need is right there – to name a few reasons.  Most of all, I think Hatch will open the doors for embroiderers – all embroiderers from beginner to advanced – because of its brilliant user interface and its powerful program. And I like new doors being opened – opened doors lead to opportunities!

So here is the inspiration for the weekend.  This person has been reading my blog and following along with all of the writing, videos and information on Hatch.  Although they have 2 other embroidery programs that they have struggled with for years, Hatch was the program that “opened the embroidery door” for them:

“Thanks for your insightful comments. I’ve been struggling with Embird for years and with Brother PES software for many years prior to that. I’ve been a home, hobby embroiderer since the first home machines came out but just couldn’t make the digitizing software do what I wanted. That changed when you posted your new Wilcom Hatch tutorials. I downloaded the 30 day trial as you suggested and have successfully created, converted, and sewn out several simple, but original designs. I’m thrilled and can’t thank you enough! I wouldn’t have taken this step without your tutorials and encouragement. After playing with Hatch for several days I knew I’d found what I’ve been searching for all these years and bought the digitizer package last night. Hatch makes sense to me in ways Embird and PES never have. And the tools and functions are so darn much fun I can’t wait to get back in and play some more! I’m in love and so grateful that you introduced this to your readers. Please keep the hatch videos coming. Wilcom has some nice tutorials but I like yours much better. Your explanations are clear and concise and your enthusiasm is contagious! Thanks again. OML and Hatch ROCK!”

What a wonderful success story!

Here is what you can take from this story:  Never give up.  Do not be afraid to try something new, take a different approach or learn something new – you never know what is going to happen!

I have said this in a few videos and blogs – if you are not happy with your current software, are struggling or are not able to get the results you want – then why are you using it?  TRY SOMETHING NEW.  You never know what will happen!  You have nothing to lose – Hatch is free for 30 days – and you have lots to gain:  confidence, happiness, a sense of accomplishment and a nice path on your way to better digitizing to name a few! 

Don’t forget to join our Facebook group:  Wilcom Hatch Tips and Tricks  so you can share your accomplishments and your progress with Hatch.  We love to see your work!!

And for everyone out there that is  using  Wilcom Hatch and loves it as much as we all do – then SHARE – get the word out everywhere and anywhere – like things, subscribe, share posts, share videos SHARE – and maybe you will help someone else!  Make your voice heard -shout it out – be passionate and enthusiastic about Hatch – you never know who is listening!!

Happy Digitizing everyone, and have a great weekend. I am going to finish work and spend some of my weekend “off time” digitizing.

More Hatch videos on Monday 🙂

 

 

 

Beginner Embroidery

Hey everyone and Happy Friday!  Today’s blog goes out to all the brand new digitizers out there.

Good for you!  Welcome to the embroidery world!  Welcome to learning all about embroidery!  Embroidery is an exciting and creative venue, and I love figuring out new techniques and styles and generally playing with embroidery.

For the new digitizers out there, there are a few things that you must do once you decide that embroidery is what you want to learn about and eventually create.

If you have been embroidering for a while, and know your stitches and understand hooping etc.  this next section will not apply to you.

First:  you need to have an embroidery machine.    Really, you need to have one.   You don’t have to have a $10,000 6 needle machine,  a single needle lower end one will do – you need to be able to stitch out designs and see the stitches, see the mistakes and understand a few things, and I feel strongly that you can only learn all of these things by using an embroidery machine and watching it work.

Second:  RESEARCH AND LEARN.  Yes.  You must learn about embroidery…everything you can about embroidery…how to use your machine, hooping, stabilizers,  bobbins, different threads, different needles, different fabrics,  jump stitches, connections, color changes…the list goes on and on.  You have to learn embroidery – its a skill.  If you think you can pick up digitizing software and instantly you are a digitizer, you are wrong.  It takes so much more than that.  It takes WORK.  It takes LEARNING.  It takes TIME.  It takes RESEARCH….it takes a lot.  The more you put into digitizing, the more you will get out of it with beautiful stitch outs and beautiful designs.

No matter what embroidery software you are using, you must learn about embroidery.  You must understand that you can’t make a satin stitch 3 inches wide…you need to understand stabilizers and good hooping, you must understand all about embroidery before you can learn to digitize.  If you don’t understand embroidery, then you will be frustrated as a digitizer.  SUGGESTION:  watch different designs stitch out…pay attention to what is happening on your machine.  learn about connections…learn to see the difference between a good stitch out and a bad one and most importantly WHY.  Watch designs stitching from different sources – some are better than others.  Hoop…and re-hoop and practice hooping using the correct stabilizers.  You can have the best embroidery design ever, and if you hoop a stretchy material with tear away stabilizer, the design will look terrible.  Remember “you are only as good as your hooping skills” .  You also need to understand what Push/Pull compensation is, and watch it in action on your machine with different stabilizers.  Use your embroidery machine…embroider everything you can and learn to hoop even the most difficult fabrics or items.  How can you create a simple design for a shirt collar and make it fit properly, if you have never embroidered on a shirt collar?

And here are the big ones that I can’t stress enough time and time again:

UNDERSTAND THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A STITCH OR MACHINE FILE AND A FILE THAT YOU CREATED:  .EMB, .EOF, .PXF FILES ARE DIFFERENT FROM STITCH FILES.  THERE IS A BIG DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A STITCH FILE AND A WORKING FILE…BIG…

UNDERSTAND THAT IF YOU TAKE A STITCH FILE AND RENAME IT A .EMB FILE, IT IS STILL NOT A NATIVE .EMB FILE AND YOU STILL DON’T HAVE BIG EDITING CAPABILITIES.

UNDERSTAND THAT YOU CAN’T TAKE A STITCH FILE, BRING IT INTO YOUR DIGITIZING PROGRAM AND EDIT IT VERY MUCH…YOU CAN’T TAKE A STITCH DESIGN THAT IS 2 INCHES AND MAKE IT 7 INCHES.  YOU DON’T HAVE THAT LEVEL OF EDITING.

Understand that these rules apply to ALL DIGITIZING SOFTWARE.   A stitch file that your machine can understand is something completely different from a working file…if you get frustrated and change softwares, those rules still apply.  People ask me this all the time…”I AM SO FRUSTRATED..I HAVE A .PES FILE THAT I BRING INTO STUDIO AND I WANT TO MAKE IT BIGGER AND IT WON’T WORK….I AM SO FRUSTRATED…WILL HATCH/EMBRILLIANCE/WILCOM etc.  DO THIS?  No.  No it won’t.  A STITCH FILE IS MADE FOR STITCHING, A WORKING FILE IS MADE FOR WORKING.  Understand this part, and you will save yourself hours of frustration and wasted materials.   WHAT DOES A WORKING FILE LOOK LIKE? my first answer is “it will look like YOU CREATED IT”   OK, in the software it looks the same as any other file, except that it is completely editable…and the name of it will be different.  Machine files are named depending on the type of machine that you use:  .PES for brother, JEF for Janome, XXX for singer, etc.  The working files will be named differently:  EOF for Embird .EMB for Wilcom, PXF for DG15, etc.  You can’t send a working file to your machine:  your machine will not acknowledge it as anything and it will not stitch.  So again:

STITCH FILES (.PES, JEF, DST etc) are for stitching on your machine, not for working on and editing.

WORKING FILES (EOF, EMB, PXF) are for working on and will not work in any machine.

Once you have mastered embroidery on its own, it may be time to move on to digitizing.  If you understand embroidery, you will better understand digitizing – it will make more sense.   Sure, you can get an embroidery machine and the software that it comes with and dive right in and do everything at the same time, but if you do one step at time you will learn properly and save yourself tons of frustration.   You can’t expect someone in grade 1 to understand something in college, right?  grade 1 is building the foundations for everything you learn in college.  Ok, I am not saying that mastering embroidery is going to take you 12 years, but it is going to take time.  Take the time.  Learn.  Have fun.  Learn some more.  Be happy.

If you have any brand new embroiders/digitizers that you know in your group, etc.  pass this information along to them.  It will be very helpful!!

Embroidery: Think outside the box, design what you see…

EMBROIDERY INSPIRATION FOR THE WEEKEND:

In our classes and in any video that I produce, I am forever saying THINK OUTSIDE THE EMBROIDERY BOX.  What does that mean?  It means you don’t have to stick to all of the rules or traditions with embroidery, you can think or “see” embroidery differently and come up with designs that are completely original and one of a kind.

Don and I work together ever day, but we see embroidery completely differently! When we both look at a jpeg or a vector design, we see different results in embroidery.  We both think outside the box, just maybe on other sides of the box.  We both do amazing embroidery, but we create completely differently.  Don has an amazing eye for details, and I see thinks in a more artistic fashion, if that makes any sense.  I see bright colors and flowing stitches and everything fancy.   We did an experiment once – a patch customer didn’t exactly know what he wanted from his design.  Don took the picture and worked on it and so did I – the exact same picture – and we came up with completely different custom patch results!!  We had a good laugh over that one – and of course we let the customer decide which one he liked best.    The customer said it was very difficult to decide – they were both good, and both different.

So yes, think outside the embroidery box.  If you have a picture that you really like, what can you do with it?  You can use it as a backdrop for something interesting, you can take elements out of the picture, you can take the “feeling” of the picture and make a whispy – artsy design – or you can add all those elements together and come up with something interesting and different.

Don loves working with redwork and blackwork designs- it seems to be his thing.  And when he looks at a design, he can “pull out” the important parts of the design to make into redwork – not all of the elements of course, but just the ones that will look good.    He took a picture of our friend and his motorcycle and turned it into an embroidery design – and all of the details are in the right place.  We sent a picture of the design to a few of our friends just to test – and they were able to recognize the person in the design – I would say that is the right amount of detail in a design.

So yes, think outside the embroidery box.  When we are outside relaxing, or walking around – we can see embroidery design elements everywhere we go – a flower, some grass, our gardens, the cute weenie dogs we have – anything!  Try it – you might be surprised at what you can come up with.   Snap a picture with your phone – then you have that picture to bring into your embroidery.  It doesn’t matter what embroidery program you are using, the results will be the same:  a one of a kind embroidery design.

burtch redwork.png

WILCOM HATCH: RADIAL STITCHES

Another awesome stitch effect that is available on Wilcom Hatch:  RADIAL STITCHES.  If you don’t know what radial stitches are, keep reading!  Its a great effect that adds dimension, interest and complexity to any embroidery design.

Radial stitches are similar to contour stitches, in that they move around in a radius from a point.  One of the big differences is where that centre point is located.  In Wilcom Hatch, you can actually move that centre point anywhere you want in the design, even off the design!  This means that you can have the stitches radiating out from any point that you want – and you can change the entire look of the design.

Screen Shot 2016-05-05 at 11.10.01 AM

In the picture above, I used a tatami stitch with a pattern and set the centre point outside of the first oval, and then used the circle copy feature to make this flower.  As you can see, the ovals merged and the radial stitch still kept its pattern!  I added a plain tatami circle in the middle, and just like that I have a flower – an interesting flower that has a pattern, style dimension and interest!  For a 1 minute flower, i think it looks pretty good!!!

In the picture below, i have set up the oval:  under digitize tools, draw a circle and then apply the radial stitches to it, then use the reshape tool to move the centre point to just below the bottom end of the oval.

Screen Shot 2016-05-05 at 11.11.11 AM

After the oval shape element has been set up, then I went to the layout panel and picked the Circle Copy tool and played around with it until i got the shape that I wanted – a pretty little flower.  I merged all of the ovals into one piece to create my cute little flower embroidery.

Check out this quick tip video and see the Radial Stitch in action!

New Sfumato Stitch Embroidery Tutorial

After two weeks of hard work working, I have finally finished the Learn to Digitize video on Embird’s Sfumato stitch! Whew!  Not that the program itself is that difficult to do (because it isn’t once you get the hang of it) but it was hard to put it all together, from start to finish on how to do things properly and easily.  Once you do things the Sfumato Stitch way, it all comes together!   And I got it all together, and this tutorial takes you from start to finish on how to create your own picture stitch embroidery designs.

This is the picture that I started with:  a simple close up picture from my iPhone of my best buddy, Gallifrey the Weenie Dog, (aka Gally or Frey).  This picture in its original form is high resolution to be able to get in all the details we need  in creating this embroidery design using Sfumato Stitch.

IMG_7722

The video tutorial is a beginner Sfumato Stitch video so we will be going over the basics: how to pick a picture, which pictures will work and which pictures will not and why, picture resolutions and some Sfumato rules that you have to do. And, if you stick to the Sfumato Rules, you can have the same results with your pictures! There is nothing that adds more WOW to your design than making a beautiful stitch out that looks exactly like your model!  Its picture embroidery!

sfumato stitch embroidery, picture stitch embroidery, create your own embroidery

Gallifrey looks so good!

Gallifrey looks so good!

Step outside the regular embroidery box and learn a whole new technique with a new set of embroidery rules and finally learn Sfumato stitch!

So grab the tutorial and get started on making your own picture embroidery!
[shopify product=http://omldigitizing.com/products/class-10-embird-sfumato-stitch]

Wilcom Hatch: Lettering Glyphs

›ATTENTION EVERYONE:  THIS WILCOM HATCH FEATURE IS GOING TO CHANGE EMBROIDERY LETTERING AS YOU KNOW IT.

While I do understand that I am super enthusiastic about typography as well as being an embroidery nerd, this is seriously going to change how I work from now on.  Really, its that big.

Let me explain what I am raving about in one word.  Glyphs.

Quite a few people don’t know that along with the basic lettering in TTF (true type fonts) there are usually a whole different set of glyphs – there are symbols, special lettering, letters with accents, different styled numbers, ligatures, swashes and fancy swirls just to name a few.  The problem is, most programs make it super hard to find them, and we tend to forget that they are there.  Even if you do find them, unless you are using a program like Adobe Illustrator, they are difficult to get into whatever you are working on.  Wilcom has seen this issue and has come up with a perfect and brilliant solution that will change boring lettering into something more!!  And to make things even better, you do not have to leave Hatch to use these special letters!  Its all right there in the program – quick and easy access and easy to use!   Another problem with using glyphs is that some TT Fonts have quite a few glyphs – so many that they are hard to see in the programs that come with Windows and Mac, and even third party programs.  You have to guess at what you want, and quite often get it wrong and have to start over again, painstakingly “building” your lettering.  Wilcom Hatch embroidery software has taken the guesswork out of glyphs – the icons for them are BIG and CLEAR and you can view them as outlines and with stitches.  You really can’t ask for anything more!  its perfect!  and it will change how i use any of my fonts:  its like a whole new world has opened up for me and I am certain that my typography designs will be spectacular.

Here is an example of what I am talking about:

Plain lettering:

Screen Shot 2016-04-21 at 7.55.12 PM

Lettering using glyphs:

Screen Shot 2016-04-21 at 8.01.55 PM

See the difference?

 

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Wilcom Hatch Embroidery Software

At OML Embroidery, we are all digitizers and we absolutely love digitizing.  We are also open to new programs, and we are happy to check out different ways of creating awesome embroidery, and are happy to keep growing out software stash.  As of this month, we use Tajima DG15, Embrilliance, Embird and now Wilcom Hatch.  We use all of these programs for daily digitizing and also for creating learning videos.

Keeping an open mind and always doing research, I stumbled upon the (much loved) Wilcom embroidery site – I often check with Wilcom to see if they have anything new – and was super happy to find out that they do have something new, its called HATCH.  I checked out their website and learned everything I could about the software, and then decided to try the demo.  And I have to say, I am impressed.

If you are looking for embroidery digitizing software that is user friendly, tablet friendly and has a great layout AND powerful tools, this is the software for you.  Hatch has all the power of Wilcom with a fantastic interface that makes your digitizing experience easier.  Powerful tools, a great help system and a super easy user interface makes Wilcom Hatch one of the best embroidery programs so far.  I absolutely love it.  The program is fast, easy to use and has all of the bells and whistles that you need.  It is far from a “basic” embroidery digitizing program, but not as complicated as the Wilcom E3 program, I would say that it is somewhere in between – not a simple home embroidery program, but not a high priced commercial program either.  I guess I would have to call it semi-commercial?

I can barely contain my excitement in this video – i even say “groovy” more than once (ha ha)!  This video is an introduction to the software so you can see the brilliant workspace and see how quickly and easily you can find everything that you need.

 

Take a few minutes and check out this video – I am sure you will be as excited as I am about this new embroidery program!

 

#wilcom #wilcomhatch #hatch #wilcomembroidery #wilcomlessons #hatchlessons #embroiderylessons #learnwilcom #wilcomhelp #embroidery #learnhatch #customembroidery #omlembroidery #OML