Modern computerized embroidery machines are amazing devices, creating incredible designs using only colored thread. Yet what is even more amazing about models like the Janome MB-4S embroidery machine is how they actually work.
Using the 6 techniques referenced below to set and guide the machine, most can stitch great designs on fabric using computerized Janome embroidery machines.
1. Create the Digital Design
The first step in machine embroidery is creating the digital art that will be stitched onto the fabric. This is the longest part of the process as it involves a number of steps. Artwork must be scanned in or opened in a special digital art program, then edited on a standard computer to turn the image file into a design composed of stitches.
Some programs do this automatically, while others give the sewist many ways to edit the outcome in terms of stitch length, colors, stitch angles, and more. The goal with this step is to get the art to look the way it will look after it is stitched using the digitizing software.
2. Convert the Design into A Stitch File
Once the artwork has been successfully digitized in preparation for stitching on a Janome MB-4S embroidery machine, it must be converted into a stitch file. These files are formatted to be interpreted by the computer within the embroidery machine. Not all makes and models understand the same stitch files, so it is important to save the file in the format specific to usage on Janome embroidery machines.
3. Upload and Read Stitch File
After the digital stitch file is saved, it must be uploaded from the regular computer onto the embroidery machine's computer. This can be done by connecting the two using a USB cable or by saving the data to a flash drive that is plugged into the sewing machine and uploaded.
4. Prepare the Settings
When the digitized stitch file has been uploaded into the machine's memory, instructions must be given to the machine to correctly stitch the design. This includes assigning needles and colors to various parts of the design and setting up stitching sequences. When using this data, embroidery machines stitch with the desired color until they need to switch colors, tying off the previous color before the next needle moves into position to begin stitching.
5. Hoop the Fabric
After all settings have been set and the art is ready to be stitched, the next step is to secure the fabric on the hoop or frame, then set the hoop into the frame arms. If stabilizers are necessary, they should be applied during this step before the actual stitching begins. Secure hooping requires practice, so it is important that sewists take their time with this step or risk ruining the design if the fabric is not tensioned properly.
6. Turn on the Machine
Once the fabric has been hooped, the last and final step is to turn on the machine and let it stitch. As it stitches, it will use the different needles and threads that have been set up ahead of time, the head moving around the design as the needle stitches. It will continue stitching until the entire design is complete, after which it can be turned off and the fabric unhooped.
Embellishing fabric with computerized embroidery machines may seem complicated. In reality, the most complex part of the process is the interpretation of the design and control of the needles is handled by the internal computer. With correctly prepared art, sewists using a Janome MB-4S embroidery machine need only perform the 6 tasks mentioned above - and can leave the rest to their amazing Janome embroidery machines!