Embroidery is the art of decorating fabric or other materials with designs using thread or yarn along with a needle. Embroidery may also use other materials such as metal strips, pearls, beads, quills, and sequins.
Machine embroidery is performed by special machines which automatically create a design from a pre-made pattern that is fed into the machine. Most embroidery machines are operated through computers that read digitized embroidery files created by special software.
In Machine embroidery, the designs are "digitized" with Embroidery Software. Almost all basic types of embroidery can be created with Machine Embroidery. These include: Applique, Free Standing Lace, Cutwork, Cross-stitch, Photo Stitch, and Basic Embroidery. Most often this type of embroidery is associated with business shirts, gifts, team apparel and commercial use.
Some embroidery machines are specifically built for industrial purposes. These are tough and can do several stitches in short span of time. Those who are into the embroidery business, should make themselves aware of the newest technologies and designs available as the fast changing fashion makes designs old very fast. The newest technology does not always demand a new machine. Instead new software design can be installed according to the requirements. Many of the softwares designed for embroidery lets a person change an image in digital form to a pattern for embroidery that can be uploaded on the machine.
Embroidery digitizationDigitizing is the process that changes an image file into a workable embroidery file. Today embroidery is done by stitching machines that must have a proper embroidery format to complete the task. Many types of formats are available. These can be classified into two groups: Bitmap art & Vector art types.
Bitmap Artwork is very common through out the Internet. The definition of bitmap is: "The method of storing information that maps an image pixel, bit by bit". Bitmap image are simply pixels or dots used to create an image. Bitmaps are very good for websites. However, they are not very useful in print work as they cannot be resized with efficiency. Jpeg is a common format for bitmap artwork.
Vector Artwork is a much more recent technology. The definition of vector artwork is: "Artwork that uses a mathematical language to describe color, shape, and placement information of the individual components of an image". Vector uses math to create its images. Therefore it can resize an image and can make it smaller or longer without losing its quality. This makes vector the perfect medium for print work as a single original design of artwork can be used for business cards as well as for billboards. EPS is a common format for vector artwork.
Vector artwork is preferred in the embroidery image as it can be imported into the digitizers software very easily. All images - bitmap or vector -must be manually converted into a stitch file. A stitch file actually contains the stitch patterns and thread colors for the sewing. This process is called digitizing.