Monday, 9 March 2015

Embroidery Machine basic Tutorial

The embroidery machine can take an image and convert it into lines which it can follow with a stitch, or it can fill inbetween if the area is enclosed.

This tutorial will show you how to get an image into the application and convert it into stitch lines and fills.

Finding an Image

To make your life easier, it is best to start with images that have only a few colours, and which are flat. i.e. no gradients or noise.

For demonstration purposes I have not made my life easier, I have picked this image:
Although this image has gradients, we can fix it in Photoshop to make it a flatter image

Fine-tuning the image before using PE Design

I will open the image in Photoshop. To make the image have less colours (I count the gradient as many colours) we can do a few things:
  1.  If it is just one shaded colour, you can use threshold
    1. Click on the threshold button in the Adjustments panel on the leftIt's in the bottom row of icons in the middle
    2. It will add an adjustment layer in photoshop and take you to editing it. This panel should now look like this
    3. And your image should now be black and white:
    4.  Underneath the graph there is a slider, if you slide it around you should be able to get a good black and white image:
    5. Heres where I moved the slider to:
    6. If you are happy with it, you can save as a JPEG image and move onto the next Chapter "Converting Pixel Image into Vector Image"
  2. If these last few steps didn't bode well, then we will try a different 'filter'
    1. We will use the 'Cutout' filter, accessed in the menu 'Filters > Artistic > Cutout...
    2.  You will see these sliders:
    3. Move them about until you have however many colours you need. Your image should look flat (no gradients) like this:
    4. Save your file as a JPEG image and close Photoshop.

Converting images into stitch and fills

Now we are ready to put the image into PE Design
  1. The software needs a license to run, which is on the 'disk drive' for the embroidery machine. Make sure it is plugged in.
  2. Load up PE Design Center
    1. Start menu > PE Design > PE Design Center
  3. click on the Image button to say you have an image to work from
  4. Find your image and click OK
  5. With the colour picker, choose the colours of your image that you want it to work from
  6. Click OK
  7. Now in the top right corner you will see four icons next to each other. These are the four steps to take to convert our image. The workflow is to work from left to right. We have done the first two steps of importing the image and converting it to PE Design format.
  8. Click the next image which looks like some dots with lines joining them. Here it will convert our image into lines
  9. The standard settings work well, but if it does not produce the right image, click this icon again to go back and repeat the steps, changing the settings.
  10. Your image should be converted into lines. You can edit these lines if there are not quite right using the tools on the left
  11. The final step is the last button on the right. When you click this it will covert your lines to a running stitch.
    1. To change the stitch colour click on the line tool and change the colour.
      1. Whereever you now click it will change that line to that colour
    2. To make it have no running stitch, click the button to the left of the colour to turn it off
      1. wherever you now click it will not do a running stitch
    3. To change whether it fills an area in with a fill stitch click the fill tool
      1. Where-ever you now click it will fill in areas with a fill stitch
    4. To unfill an area, click the button to the left of the 'colour' button
      1. Where-ever you now click it will NOT fill in areas.
  12. When you are happy with your image you will need to put it on the disk
    1. Don't close the PE-Design center but open PE Layout and Editing from the Start menu
      1. Start > Programs > PE Design > Layout and Editing
    2.  To import your file click File > Import > From Design Center
      1. It will ask you what size to import it as
    3. Now to save to disk
      1. Click File > Write to Disk

The Embroidery Machine

Now you are ready to put your image on the Embroidery machine.
  1. Switch the machine on at the back
  2. Click the on-screen OK button
  3. When it is booted, insert the disk
  4. Click on the icon which represents the disk
  5. Click on the file on the disk
    1. It will put your artwork on the 'canvas'
  6. You can rotate, resize your artwork here.
  7. When you are ready click the End Edit button (bottom right)
  8. Load your Embroidery frame in
  9. Click the To Sew button (bottom right)
  10. Thread the machine
  11. Click the Sew button (bottom right)
  12. Click the safety button and then the green button to begin.

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