Custom Embroidery? Do-it-yourself or Possible Commission?
Posted 01 September 2012 - 11:15 AM
I originally did an applique/iron-on type thing for the designs, but I've always wanted to get them actually embroidered onto the hoodie, both for lasting durability, and because I think they're pretty awesome. XD
I'm not really sure how to do this or if it's even possible. I'd think so since I've seen people who can do really nice, fancy embroidered patches and whatnot for bags and everything, but I'm not sure if they're using fancy machines or simple sewing machines. XD I tried to hand sew one of the designs onto a section of cloth, since my Mom made a patch like that once, but it turned out, well, horrible. XD And my simple sewing machine ended up almost doing worse than doing it by hand. It's a Singer machine, Model # 5825C, but I'm not sure if that's capable of doing large patches of embroidery or not.
I had considered finding a business or someone to do it for me, all the sites I've found make complicated, multi colored patches. All I want are solid white patches in relatively simple designs.
So I was hoping that someone could give me any suggestions to how I'd go about this? Either ways for me to do this myself or if anyone has any suggestions as to where I can get these designs made as patches.
Or if anyone here is willing to take up a commission for this? XD (And yes I know this is the wrong forum to ask for commissions, but I'm posting this here first 'cause I'd like to do it myself if at all possible. XP)
I figured I'd start poking around now instead of the month of so before the con like I did last year. ^^;
Any help or suggestions would be much appreciated. Thanks!
~ Balmung - .Hack//Infection-Quarantine - 20% finished - Definitely for 2013...If the world hasn't ended. XD
~ Support Reaper - TWEWY
Posted 01 September 2012 - 05:28 PM
As an example, BabyLock manufactures both home sewing/embroidering and embroidering-only machines -- http://www.babylock.com/embroidery/
These embroidery machines are highly computerized, and use special files to plot out and execute the design. Premade designs are downloadable and can be found all over the internet, both for free and as an item to be bought. To have the machine do an original design, the design must be digitized into a format that the machine recognizes (there're, like, 8 different formats, too). This requires a special suite of software, sometimes two different suites of programs, purchased separately from the embroidery machine itself. And let me tell you, those programs are NOT user-friendly! They make MS Paint look positively robust. >_<
To do a large design like the one on that hoodie completely in embroidery seems like it would be prohibitively expensive. You would need to find or commission someone (possibly multiple someones) to isolate/draw out that design, then digitize it, and then stitch it out. The home-machine digitizing commissionees I've seen usually charge by the stitch or sometimes by the finished size of the piece, and if you do a filled-in-design like you want... geez... I think 500,000 stitches or more would be an underestimation -- possibly a large one. I ended up paying over $70 for a local lady to digitize a small patch (less than 3 inches across, roughly 72,000 stitches) of the rose signet design from Revolutionary Girl Utena -- simplified, lines only, in just one color. That's just the file itself. I spent more on specialized machine embroidery thread (regular thread won't work) and special machine embroidery stabilizer (which is needed for any design that is moderately complex).
That said, if you want to try the commissioning route, I'd hit up etsy and possibly ebay, and ask around at your local sewing/fabric stores. There is a cottage industry for digitizing original images. Sometimes digitizers with their own webpages will also take commissions. You might think about doing the fabric patch idea and just commissioning an outline of the design. Filled in with white fabric, it'll still look professional, but you won't be paying for the (probably literal) million stitches a filled-in design would require. Otherwise... hm... Ask around at any local t-shirt/custom-do-dads stores. Sometimes they do logos and stuff. I have no idea what their costs might be for creating, digitizing, and running a complex one-off design (or if they'd even do one-off designs at all. Some do, some don't), but it might be worth a shot.
Helpful in any of these scenarios would be having a high-quality image of the full design by itself, preferably reduced down to as few colors as possible (two-color if you can manage it). I'd try for one filled-in image and one outlines-only image.
As to your machine... from the picture, it doesn't look like it has any fancy embroidery stitches on it, but you could probably make one of those zigzag stitches into a satin stitch (Satin stitch is just a zigzag pushed really really really close together). You'd need a special foot as well, called an embroidery or darning foot (also sometimes called a free quilting or free motion foot). Some machines have this kind of foot in their standard box of accessories, but you can also buy them at sewing stores and online. You need to make sure you get a foot that's compatible with your machine if you're buying it separately. I don't know your machine specifically, so I will mention that you might also need a special plate to go over the feed dogs (those teeth-like-things that're under the foot). Some machines do, some don't.
What I'd do is maybe cut the white shapes out of fabric, fix them in place with a basting stitch or fusible webbing (basically double-sided, iron-on glue), then use a satin stitch (+ darning foot + feed dog cover + machine embroidery thread) on a regular machine to go over the edges. This would give it a look like a patch, and you wouldn't need a special machine and expensive materials to do it. Getting comfortable with the darning foot does take practice, so definitely test on scraps before you do the whole thing.
Posted 12 December 2012 - 05:24 PM
While it'd be *possible* to embroider a hoodie like that, it would require a lot of time, thread and you'd either have to tear up the current hoodie or make a totally new one to get the embroidery on there. =\ While it would look fancier, it would also make the hoodie kinda of stiff (cause of all the thread you have to use) & if you have sensitive skin at all, it could also be kind of irritating. As for patches, that could be possible, but it would still make the hoodie stiff in those areas.
My recommendation for that project would be paint. This http://www.jacquardp...om/lumiere.html paint, while a bit expensive, is worth it. A couple of coats and it looks pretty amazeballs. I have a costume I made back in 05, it had similar designs to the one you're talking about, I used this lumiere paint and it's still good as new.
If you do have any questions or problems with embroidery tho, feel free to hit me up Best of luck to you!
Posted 12 December 2012 - 08:23 PM
Friday - Ryoga Hibiki - Ranma 1/2 FINISHED
Sat Morning - Akutsu Jin - Prince of Tennis FINISHED
Sat Evening - Black Rose Deulist Wakaba - Revolutionary Girl Utena FINISHED
Sunday - Shishido Ryou - Prince of Tennis FINISHED
Posted 13 December 2012 - 05:24 PM
lol! There is that! Wish I could do hand embroidery, but my wrists would kill me (repetitive stress issues). And then if they didn't, my friends would kill me (they already think i'm crazy for the amount of hand-sewing I do, adding embroidery would just cement it). I have huge respect for people who do take on projects like that though. it's impressive!
Also, seconded about the Jacquard. I should've remembered the paint, since I've been pushing the brand to all my crafty friends for over a year now. It's expensive, but really high-quality and totally worth it.