Buy this poster at Art.com
Using a sewing machine to do embroidery is as old as sewing machines!
The most basic type of machine embroidery is using a different coloured thread to do topstitching on items.
Since then, machine embroidery has moved from the inclusion of simple zig-zag stitch on machines, to using a special embroidery cam in a machine, and to today’s specialised and computer-driven Embroidery Machines.
Early embroidery on machines was done the same way as hand embroidery – the design was drawn onto the fabric, and the embroiderer sewed each element of the design on the machine, changing the thread colours when necessary.
The introduction of the Cam was a great leap in machine embroidery. It gave machine embroiderers more stitches to use, and the cams even included some simple embroidery designs themselves.
The next step was a card that contained a design imprinted into it that was inserted into the specialised sewing machine that enabled the machine to do all the work. All the operator had to do was change the colours.
The Computer age has brought about the biggest change in machine embroidery.
There are specialist embroidery machines that can not only do the finest of embroidery work, but also can make lace!
Digitising software has enabled machine embroiderers to design their own patterns and sew them – and this has been the biggest boom in machine embroidery since the invention of the sewing machine.
Things have reached the point now where on the Internet a search of “embroidery” results in 95% of the results being for machine embroidery!
Most sewing machine manufacturers now make machines that can not only do straight sewing, but are also sophisticated embroidery machines – and this is in addition to their specialised embroidery machines – both for home and industrial use.
Machine embroidery is seen everywhere – from caps to shirts – most companies have either a polo shirt or a baseball cap with their logo embroidered on it.
I have to admit, I have never been a huge fan of machine embroidery and do not do it myself – but I am constantly amazed at the quality of the work that is now being turned out, and the amazing new things that can be done.
Why not take a look into this “new” form of embroidery for yourself.
Is there anything that you would particularly like to see an article on? If so, please e-mail me with your suggestions.
© 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005 Megan McConnell