One color embroidery designs are traditionally called Red Work. These designs were done in the past stitching pictures by hand using red threads. Today, we often refer to machine embroidery one color designs as Red Work and then change them to different colors at the machine (blue work, green work, black work). The trick when designing a single color design for the embroidery machine is to have the elements all connect to each other and draw them so they sew at the machine as a continuous stitch design. Try not to have jumps, starts and stops, and elements that are not connected. You can add interest to the designs by changing from running stitches, bean stitches, zigzag stitches, and a small amount of fill stitch areas. Open your EQStitch program. Name a new project called One Color Designs. Set the preferences back to the default settings. Click on the ‘work
Headed to a 3 day retreat for machine embroidery this weekend! This is a great time to work on items for Christmas and also for test sewing all those machine embroidery designs I have been working on with my EQStitch program. Designs that work up quickly are linear and usually one color designs. But, you could always opt to use variegated thread and just let it stitch out the lines and the various colors are automatically added. I love to use a bean stitch (also called triple stitch) for a linear design or a small zigzag line when using variegated threads. The thread choice always effects the design you create. Too thick of a thread will cause problems with heavily filled areas and too thin of a thread will cause issues with it not being prominent enough for the overall design. Digitizing is just the first step to creating lovely
Text fonts come in all shapes and sizes but not all fonts will stitch well. Fonts can be letters or small icon shapes. All fonts you have in your computers’ Font Folder on your hard drive will be available in the drop down menu in EQStitch. Below are some tips for dealing with fonts in the EQStitch program. 1. Just because the font is available in the fonts folder and can be accessed by EQStitch does not mean it will stitch well. 2. The smaller the font size the harder it is to read when created with threads. 3. Applique fonts need to be fairly large in order to incorporate the zigzag edge stitches without closing down the font shape. 4. The approximate size on the properties bar when creating text is indeed approximate. If you need an exact size of letter, you need to select it and then type
Critical thinking is the intellectually disciplined process of actively and skillfully conceptualizing, applying, analyzing, synthesizing and/or evaluating information gathered from, or generated by, observation, experience, reflection, reasoning or communication, as a guide to belief and action. Simply put it means to plan ahead. When digitizing we do this all the time. Think of what type of design you want to create, the steps it will take to create the artwork, work from background to foreground, apply stitch properties and thread colors, and then sort the information before exporting it to become a stitch file for your embroidery machine. Did you know you do all that when designing with your EQStitch? Sometimes it is just easier to let the auto digitizing functions of the program take over and think through all the steps for you. But, when you rely on auto digitizing, you lose the control to be creative yourself.
I love the ability to use the Custom Set Quilt Layout in EQ7 to help with my designing. What does that have to do with EQStitch? It works really well for me to be able to ‘see’ my quilt layout and where my machine embroidery designs would best be placed to enhance the entire quilt project. I was a quilter first and a machine embroiderer second so now almost all of my embroidery ends up in a quilt. From the quilt worktable, click on QUILT>New Quilt>Custom Set. On layer 1 of the quilt layout, click on the ‘set block’ icon on the toolbar and ‘while holding down the shift key’ on the keyboard, click/hold/drag/release the blocks you have designed for your quilt layout. Scatter the blocks around the quilt layout area giving lots of space between the blocks. (Your blocks may be pieced, appliqued, or an image printed on fabric.)
Closed shapes in EQStitch make it easy for us to create designs quickly without having the artistic ability ourselves. Using the shape tools and editing them, cloning them, changing them from a curve to a line and back again, all make it a simple way to design. Try creating a design using one shape only. I chose to use the oval tool (heart) and simply edited that one shape to create an entire drawing. Start by opening your program and setting your drawing board options. I chose to have fill stitches with no edge stitch for my shapes. Using the shape tool, I created my tree trunk by changing one side of the heart into a line. Then I added several edit points on the remaining heart curve the dragged the points to multiple positions to make the arms of the branches and the roots of the trees. I used
I often change my mind about what I want to digitize as I am working. The thought I start out with is usually not the design I end up with. I love having editing tools to toggle on and off to help me change my mind as I go along. Our shape tool in EQStitch gives us a properties bar with lots of editing options. Launch the EQStitch program by double clicking on the icon on the desktop. Name your project ‘Changing My Mind’. Set the properties of the program back to the defaults as you start this new project. Click on FILE>Preferences. Restore the defaults by clicking on the words ‘restore’ and then place a check mark next to ‘include original fabrics…’ and click on the ‘restore default settings’. Relaunch the program and open the project you named ‘Changing My Mind’. Close the sketchbook. Click on the stitch worktable