How Embroidery Machines Work

Have you ever wondered what goes into embroidering large custom orders for promotional apparel, hats and accessories? Well, we’re going to tell you anyway. Although, the kind embroidery that’s possible with digital machines is far more complicated than manual machinery, the process itself is actually far simpler – and immensely easier than the hand embroidery some of our unfortunate female ancestors were forced to learn. Here’s a quick run through on how digital embroidery machines work.

A computerized embroidery machine requires a programmed digital design that has been pre-formatted to work with that particular apparatus. This is a process called digitizing. If you’ve ever ordered embroidered promos before then you know that this is also when a distributor and a supplier will work together to determine how many stitches your artwork will require, how they will proof you and, in some cases, how much you will be charged for your products. Once this step is completed and you’ve approved your proof, the design is programmed into the embroidery machine, either through a direct connection to a computer or laptop, a memory card or a disk.

Once a design is loaded into an embroidery machine, the threads and fabric need to be prepared. The fabric, or product, being embroidered must be fitted tightly onto an embroidery hoop where it will be held in place during stitching. Depending upon the machine’s capacity, embroidery will be done one thread color at a time or with multiple colors at the same time. Single thread machines will use the digitized artwork programmed into it to indicate which colors will be stitched and in what order.

From this point on, embroiders only need monitor the progress of the stitching to make sure no mistakes or malfunctions occur. The computer and machine themselves will control the embroidery arm, move the fabric hoop, and in many cases, change the thread color and continue on their own until the embroidery is complete. The process of placing a product on the fabric hoop and running the machine is repeated for every piece in a particular order.

As you can see, the size and capacity of a company’s embroidery machinery will be a factor in how quickly they can complete large custom orders. You might place an order with a major distributor online and receive your order within 2 week while smaller, local embroiders with less commercial equipment need more time. All you have to do is plan accordingly depending upon who you want to give your business to.

Shop our collection of high-end and stylish tees, polos, dress shirts, hats and bags to see what you can get your own beautiful logo custom embroidered on today!

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