Some Knowledge About Digitizing
Technically, digitizing refers to the process of converting analog information into digital information. For example, scanning a photo into the computer is a form of digitizing. As it relates to embroidery, it is the process of preparing artwork and applying stitches to create a digital embroidery file suitable for use on a computerized embroidery machine.
A fill stitch is used to cover a large area in an embroidery digitizing design. Fill stitches can be aligned to create patterns or they can change direction to provide different effects from within the design.
A design program format that has individual stitches in a design specifically digitized at a certain size. Designs punched in this format cannot generally be enlarged or reduced more than 10 to 20 percent without distortion because stitch count remains constant. See “condensed format”.
Embroidery hoop is an embroidery digitizing device which is made from wood, plastic or steel with which fabric is gripped tightly between an inner ring and an outer ring and attached to the machine’s pantograph. Machine hoops are designed to push the fabric to the bottom of the inner ring and hold it against the machine bed for embroidering.
To embroider an item with a design the customer needs an embroidery digitizing file sometimes referred to a tape. This is because the old embroidery machines used punched paper tapes and a tape reader to operate. With the advancements of new technology and the use of computerized embroidery, 3.5″ floppy diskettes are now more common in the industry. An Embroidery Disk and a Digitizing Tape are similar references. A digitizing tape/disk contains all instructions which tell the embroidery machine what to stitch on the garment.
Applique is a common digitizing way. Applique means trimming cut from one piece of fabric and stitched to another to add dimension and texture. If applique occupies a significant amount of the design, the stitch count is lower.
Woven or non-woven material used underneath the item or fabric being embroidered to provide support and stability for the needle penetration during digitizing. Best used when hooped with the garment, but also can be placed between the item to be embroidered and the needle plate on flat bed machines.
If a customer send a picture of artwork or a logo to digitize, the embroidery digitizing company will assume this customer either own the copyright to it or have received written permission from the copyright owner to have it digitized for machine embroidery. If it is a nationally recognized logo, I will probably ask the owner for the written permission. This is to protect the customer from possible copyright infringement.
Not all embroidery digitizing is created equal. It takes years of experience to do quality digitizing. Anybody can redraw a design, but will it look good, or stitch well on the item you want embroidered?