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Shading and Open Fills

Add depth and dimension to your embroidery with powerful shadows, shades and open fills.

  • Complex shadings and open fills add dimension, color and perspective to embroidered designs.
  • Complex shadings and open fills add dimension, color and perspective to embroidered designs. Simple menu selections let you create a range of effects using complex combinations of stitch patterns, spacing, angles and more.
  • Accordion Spacing
    Varies stitch spacing between dense and open fill, producing the graduated shading effect that’s time-consuming to achieve manually. Select from one of eight different preset effects and then adjust the densities at both ends for the exact gradient you want. Combine it with other stitch effects to open up even more creative possibilities.

Color Blending

Is Accordion spacing times two. Instead of creating the graduated effect with one color, Color Blending does it with two (for instance, green graduating to blue). Use it to create perspective, shading and other dramatic color effects. Tell EmbroideryStudio which stitch effect, spacing and colors you want to use, and it blends the two colors with a perfect stitching pattern.


Creates textured fills using run stitching that meanders randomly within a border. Control every aspect of the run: stitch length, spacing and angle, loop spacing, and more. Size or reshape your Stippling run any way you want. EmbroideryStudio automatically adjusts the Stippling effect even when you change the type of run stitch.

Compatible Software:  E4 Designing

Photo Flash

Convert black and white, grayscale and color images into multi-color artistic stitching

  • Converts any photographic file into a color digitized file
  • Automatically handles spacing
  • Specify row and stitch angles
    Photo Flash converts any photographic file into a color digitized file, adjusting the background to match the fabric color you’ll be stitching on.  Photo Flash automatically handles spacing (even with columns of different widths), and breaks long Satin stitches into shorter ones to avoid the “line down the middle” effect. Specify row and stitch angles, optimize stitch spacing, specify skew angle, determine the distribution of needle penetrations, and mor

 Compatible Software:  E4 Decorating and E4 Designing

Custom Splits

Add carving, embossing and other dimensional effects to your embroidery. Creates texture and details without increasing stitch count.

Split Lines: Lets you add dimension and detail by creating a line that splits the object—a fill pattern for instance is repeated on both sides of the split. Specify the length, size and shape of your split line. You can use multiple split lines to add even more dimension to the design. Split Lines are part of the object’s properties, and is preserved when you regenerate the object, change stitches or close and reopen the file.

Carving Stamp:  Adds the rich appearance and dimension of woodcut or embossing. Take any image or design and quickly convert it into a Carving Stamp. Simply drag that stamp over any closed object and it will appear “carved” into the object. EmbroideryStudio Carving Stamp creates the needle penetration pattern that gives the design a “woodcut” effect. Once the stamp is applied, the object can be reshaped and edited like any other.

Program Split:  Choose from a variety of patterns to add texture to your designs, or create your own.  Try using the customer’s logo as shown here, and add interest to the background

Compatible Software: E4 Designing

Auto Arrangements

Create and duplicate objects and place them perfectly!  Set up your patches instantly!

Create mirror images of any object and then position it anywhere you like.

Use Mirror-Merge to flip an object horizontally and vertically or mirror objects on an axis that you draw. Mirror-Merge puts the new object on the same angle as, and distance from, that axis. Reflection tools automatically create reflecting borders and wrap reflections around a center point to create wreath or kaleidoscope effects.

Mirror-Merge is also a great tool for creating multiple copies of a repeating design like a badge. Just specify the number or rows and columns, and EmbroideryStudio e4 creates them instantly.

Compatible Software: E4 Designing

Team Names Advanced

Take Your List right from the email, copy it to your Team name list, and you are ready to Go!

Personalize team and corporate logos quickly and efficiently

EmbroideryStudio Team Names Advanced lets you take a single design, and then personalize it with names from a list: basically the same way word processing programs handle form letters. One file contains the logo. Another file contains the list of names. Team Names Advanced puts them together ready for stitching.

Save any layout you create as a Team Layout: reusing a layout with different logos and lettering making design simpler and faster. You will cut hours off production time and costs too especially for badges and emblems. Team Names Matrix will lay out all your names as a matrix, eliminating multiple color changes and manual frame movements on the embroidery machine.

Compatible Software E4 Decorating, E4 Designing, Lettering, Editing




Offsets Advanced

The Easy Way to Outline the most complicated Objects

  • Creates automatic outlines and offset borders
  • Borders can be any combination of 10 object types
  • Multiple offsets each with its own independent object type, color, size and more
  • Offsets Advanced gives you more power and creative options for highlighting and adding outlines and offset borders to your customer’s designs. This tool wraps borders precisely around the shape of any closed object, group of objects, or the entire design. In one action, you can create an outline, and multiple offset borders, each with their own offset, stitch effect, size and thread color. Edit each of them individually.Choose border object types from Run, Triple Run, Input C (satin), Backstitch, Motif Run, Stem Stitch, Vector, Fusion Fill, Complex Fill (satin), and Complex Fill (tatami). Choose between several different methods of handling overlapping shapes for special cases.

Compatible Software:  E4 Decorating and E4 Designing

How to make a Bad Design Good

All of us have that one design that is a pain to run, but the customer is a good one, so you endure the thread breaks, and the card board look.. We are going to take a couple of your worst nightmares apart and make them a dream to run.

You will see the design as stitched, and as it appears on the screen. Then you will see what to do to make it stitch as well as it looks!

Read more

Easy Embroidery Alignment

You can add interest by making the background fill an embossed version of the logo. Here, Wilcom’s Program Split was used with the logo to add texture to a plain background.

Let’s say you just finished an embroidery job — a left-chest logo stitched on shirts and hats — and now the customer wants jackets. What’s more, he wants the same logo on a jacket back.

As it stands, the logo measures 3.5 inches wide, but now must be 17 inches wide. To top it all off, the customer wants the finished jacket “yesterday.”

If you anticipated such an upsell, you will be fine. If not, you may have to redigitize the logo because it can’t be enlarged without distortion, overly long stitches and loss of quality. You must change stitch types — column stitches must become fills, run stitches must become columns and fills will need additional underlays and pull compensation.

Changing Stitch Types & Lengths
The easiest thing to do is initially digitize your designs so that they can instantly be adjusted to meet any need or size requirement. If you have not digitized expecting an upsell, running stitches — used as an outline — must be changed to column stitches. Most embroidery software includes automatic features that will allow you to click on a group of stitches and change them to suit a larger design. Then, you can widen or shrink that column to fit. Make sure any underlying fill has an edge-run underlay, and remember that the column stitches must be offset enough to catch the underlay so that the new outline does not pull away.

In resizing a design to be embroidered on a jacket back, the existing column stitches in the smaller version must be longer in the larger version. But if they are too long, such stitches easily can be changed to fills and can glisten just like a traditional column stitch; the secret is stitch length. Long stitches that would pull in a larger column-stitch letter can be used in the fill and be stable.

The arbitrary needle penetrations allow you to use longer stitches to create the sheen you need without the stitches pulling out, and that sheen will follow the contour of the letters. So for the larger columns created by scaling up the design, think fill rather than split satin stitches.

Adjusting Underlay
Background fills, when programmed the traditional way, will be distorted when you increase the design’s size unless you add underlay and address the additional pull compensation. The longer stitch in the resized fill will pull more than the shorter one in the original fill or tatami stitch.

Additional underlay must be used, usually a double tatami that is set 90 degrees unto itself, to form a lattice that holds the fill in place and prevents it from pulling away from any outline or other object in the design. The fill still must be enlarged to compensate for the pull that occurs because of its traditional settings.

If, on the other hand, you program a layered fill from the beginning, there will be no need for the additional underlay — or any compensation — because there will be no pull. This will lower your stitch count by about 30%, and save you the frustration of thread breaks and a cardboard-like appearance.

To do a layered fill, simply reduce the stitches to 1⁄3 of the density, or the amount used in the first underlay. To reach that exact density setting, determine the number of stitches that a full density fill or tatami object contains. For example, if it contains 15,000 stitches, the layered fill should contain 5,000 stitches. Upon reducing the stitch count, remember the density setting for future use.

Digitize the background fill using the new density setting. Make sure the stitch angle is zero, or horizontal. The object should start at the top and end at the bottom. Then, duplicate that object twice. Alternate the start and stop positions in the second layer by starting at the bottom and stopping at the top, then add an edge-run underlay to that layer. The final layer will start where the second layer ended — at the top — and end at the bottom.

If there is an outline on this fill, add an edge-run underlay to the second layer and offset the column stitch outline so that it overlaps the fill’s underlay. This will prevent the outline from pulling away from the fill.

This layered fill will run beautifully with no thread breaks, and can be increased or decreased in size as needed. It also will result in a fill that moves with the jacket, easily accepts detail and doesn’t cause any push or pull. Furthermore, because there is no need for compensation, there also will be no distortion.

Texture Adds Interest
When working with a larger design, certain elements can be added to spark interest. The background fill does not have to be plain; rather, it can be an embossed version of your client’s logo. If you do this, add texture only to the last of the three layers. These extras can add appeal to your designs that brings your customers back.

The last layer of the fill is what your eye will see, so that’s where you can add either a longer stitch for gloss, a shorter stitch for a matte finish, a patterned fill with your customer’s embossed logo or any other appropriate texture.

Easily adjusting a design’s size will enable you to upsell jobs more effectively. Taking advantage of the jackets now available on the market will increase your shop’s bottom line. Starting with a layered fill will make it easier to move from size to size and garment to garment.

Knowing that the layered fill is an option means you can use the original fill from the smaller designs, reduce its density, duplicate it three times, change the starting and stopping positions on the second layer, and instantly avoid the problems related to additional underlay and pull compensation.

These easy steps will ensure you can take advantage of the smaller designs you may have previously stitched, while adding to your shop’s bottom line with a jacket to match. Digitized correctly, such designs will be a pleasure to embroider and even can be your main marketing tool for attracting more customers.

Lee Caroselli-Barnes, owner of Balboa Threadworks Embroidery Design, is known for her innovation and excellence in embroidery digitizing. She has more than 30 years of experience in the embroidery industry. For more information or to comment on this article, email Lee at balboainfo@aol.com.

As published in Impressions Magazine

String Stitch

String (Paghadi) Stitch

Visually stunning new stitch type for added creativity

Create outline or filled shapes with overlapping ‘string art’ stitching for decorative effects. This stitch is also used to attach mirror pieces commonly known as ‘Paghadi’ in India.

  • Create impressive new artistic and practical stitch effects
  • Attach mirrors typically used in Indian fashion designs (Paghadi)
  • Outline stitch type for open or closed outlines
  • Fill stitch type for filling closed shapes with or without holes
  • Use elongated stitches to fill leaf-like shapes