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How does embroidery work?

Embroidery. What do you think if you hear the word? You may imagine an old lady sitting in her lousy chair stitching with a cup of tea. Nowadays, embroidery on textile is being made with digital programs and advanced embroidery machines. Nothing against old ladies who love to embroider, but the speed and the detailed embroidery are improved enormously because of the recent expert techniques. In this article, I want to explain you how embroidery works on headwear and textile. To conclude, you can read a few important points that you have to know about embroidery.


First, the digital file is being prepared on the computer. The design has to be translated into the number of stitches. This is called the embroidery card. The embroidery card is being made on the computer automatically.

The embroidery card is a program, it’s the digital blueprint that says where the stitches have to be.

This is being made automatically, but manual adjustments are necessary. An embroidery expert has to finetune the embroidery card. You can see how a digital embroidery card is being made in the video below. When the embroidery card is being made, the embroidery can start.

Let’s say that we want to embroider 20 sweaters. Every sweater has to be prepared for the embroidery machine. Sewing experts determine the zone where the design has to be embroidered.

Next, every sweater is attached to the sewing machine. The sewing machines are doing the embroidery itself. We always make a sample piece before we embroider all pieces. This is important to check if the settings of the machine are right. Not everybody does a sample as a quality check-up, so make sure that your embroidery partner does a sample embroidery. If the sample is good, all pieces can be embroidered.

Thereafter, each sweater has to be cleaned. There is a thin paper on the embroidery that has to be removed manually with a spray. Also little details like threads are being removed. This is precise and detailed work. There can be damage from the moment that you remove the wrong thread.

Can you embroider everything?

Yes, you can embroider on anything: caps, beanies, sweaters, T-shirts, sweatpants… However, with embroidery there is a continuous action through the textile. This means that the fibers are a bit broken, and the flexibility of the textile is interrupted. That’s why we don’t advise to do embroidery on a T-shirt. As a T-shirt is not as thick as a sweater, the embroidery can have a negative impact on the textile. So it’s mostly difficult if the textile is thin. But eventually, a little embroidery is okay.

There are a few things that you have to keep in mind if you choose to embroider your textile.

  1. Cooperate with an expert embroidery master. Knowledge of the embroidery process is everything!
  2. Always choose top-quality threads. Don’t go for cheap threads, it will have an ugly result and the threads will come loose eventually.
  3. Of course, the quality of the textile is essential! Choose top-quality textile, we advise you to choose cotton.
  4. Ask how the embroidery is being done and make sure that the embroidery card is being made by an expert.
  5. Ask your partner if he makes a sample piece to check if the result is okay.

Need some more inspiration?

Look at some of our embroidery projects that we did for our clients.


Do you need personal advice for your needs? Contact our expertised team, they are happy to help you.

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Showing 2 comments
  • layasa

    Thanks for sharing all information of HOW DOES EMBROIDERY WORK?

  • John

    Nice article. Your post is very useful. Thanks for sharing this amazing post about how does embroidery work. It’s very information.

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