Printwear

June '19

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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2 0 1 9 J U N E P R I N T W E A R 2 5 EXAMPLE: SPLIT STITCH Copying a simple split-stitch is a great way to start. Though we can't split a thick, twisted floss with our machines, we can replicate the most visible parts of this stitch. Examining a sample, you'll see what looks like a nested set of 'V' shapes. We create our own mock split stitch by digitizing our 'V' motif, stitch- ing each leg in multiple passes for thick- ness, nesting each 'V' into the next. Re- peating these along a path results in an interlocked, thick-lined run that emu- lates the surface of a split stitch line with visible 'V' shapes and nested stitches, even though we can't manipulate thread like hand embroiderers. Note: Motifs that follow paths will of- ten have uneven lines as you'll need to travel to an end point to start the next re- peat. This isn't a critical problem. In our split-stitch example one of the legs of the 'V' is thicker by a pass owing to our need to travel to the next motif. However, with rustic being a stylistic watch-word, this is often easily excused as part of the handmade charm, and frankly, isn't par- ticularly noticeable to the untrained eye. TACKLING TRADITIONAL For embroiderers looking for a change of style, taking cues from handmade work can provide a treasure trove of new looks, adding texture and variation to our toolbox of fills, satins, and straight stitches. Old-school treatments and modern applications can go a long way in catch- ing eyes and adding valuable variation to help us stand out from the standard. PW Erich Campbell has more than 18 years experience as an award-winning digitizer, e- commerce manager, and industry educator. He empowers decorators to do their best work and achieve a greater success. A current educator and long-time columnist, Erich takes every opportunity to provide value to the industry. This piece derived from a motif on a Viking-age picture stone is digitized in a fairly standard man- ner, but gains some amount of hand-crafted style simply from the addition of a fuzzy thread. It doesn't go all the way to emulating hand embroidery, but the texture alone sets it apart from con- ventional machine embroidery. Even if a design element isn't evocative of hand-work or bohemian style, a thick, fuzzy thread can evoke handicrafts. In this custom tag for a cottage knitwear creator, the thick thread and looser cov- erage evokes something of the yarn in the knit material for a perfect thematic match.

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