There are a variety of vector graphics software programs available, some of which are specifically designed for embroidery digitizing. This article will focus on some of the most popular tools and techniques to help you create and digitize vector graphics.
Generally, vector files are much easier to digitize than bitmap (raster) images. This is because vector graphics are clean mathematical descriptions of shapes whereas bitmaps are just collections of pixels.
How to Create & Digitize Vector Graphics for Embroidery
Embroidery digitizing software can convert vector graphics into embroidery designs. In particular, CorelDRAW Graphics Suite offers advanced drawing tools that allow you to create a wide range of vector graphics for embroidery and other purposes.
To start designing your embroidery for more info visit our popular punch site, select your vector graphics and open the embroidery TAB in Studio. Then, select Art to Stitch (Intelligent) and tick Process Major Overlaps or Process All Overlaps.
In both cases, stitches will be created over the overlapping vectors. This will reshape the larger vectors, but also leave holes in the smaller ones.
It is recommended to begin with clean imported graphics files, ideally from programs such as Illustrator or Corel Draw, if you have one. If you do not own these programs, there are other ways to produce a simple logo or clipart for embroidery.
Types of Vector Graphics for Embroidery
There are many types of vector graphics that can be used for embroidery. These include logos, banners, patterns and more.
There is one important thing to remember, however, when selecting a vector graphic for embroidery. It is imperative that the design be in a format that can be easily digitized.
In most cases, graphics that are created in a bitmap (raster) image cannot be digitized without significant changes. The raster graphics format will inevitably degrade as it is resized, resulting in blurry and grainy images.
Vector graphics are a better choice for embroidery because they can be scaled up or down with no loss of quality. This is a big advantage for frequent resizing of designs as it allows for simple image manipulation without the need to change the file size.
Formats of Vector Graphics for Embroidery
Graphics are the primary visual communication tools used in design and can be found everywhere--from signages and motion pictures to the garment industry and packaging. They also appear in digital mediums, such as websites and software interfaces.
In embroidery, vector graphics are used for the creation of X and Y-axis paths that define surfaces (areas) and lines (paths). These are stitch sections that help an embroidery machine place stitches and make a stitched design on a given fabric.
Embroidery digitizers translate graphic designs into stitch sections and convert them to patterns that can be read by an embroidery machine. This requires a special skill set since stitch sections are not just pixel images like raster graphics.
Some raster graphics can be converted into embroidery designs with little or no trouble. However, some vector graphics can be quite difficult to convert into good quality embroidery designs.
Digitizing Vector Graphics
Digitizing is the process of converting artwork into data that contains commands that tell your embroidery machine how to sew your design onto a garment. The quality of the digitizing can make or break a design and is an essential part of a successful embroidery project.
During the digitizing process, details must be combined and simplified, often by figuring out which colors belong together. Shapes made up of pixels must also be analyzed until areas of stitching and colors can be defined.
In addition to interpreting and simplifying graphics, the software needs to be able to recognize and process the different types of threads that are available for use in an embroidery design. These include metallic, polyester and cotton threads.
The software can automatically convert prepared bitmap artwork - PNG, JPG and older GIF files - into embroidered objects using its 'batch processed' auto-digitizing tools. These tools can recognize shapes in artwork - bitmap and vector - and choose suitable stitch types to use and determine a stitching sequence based on closest joins.