February '13

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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EMBROIDERy Digitizing the best outline formats. (Hinting is a method of determining which pixels are activated in order to create the best possible character shape at small sizes and low resolutions.) The bitmaps that are produced by this outline can be rotated, scaled and sized without loss of quality.  The TrueType font format has much more powerful and flexible hinting capabilities than other font formats and so are the best fonts to choose for digitizing. But each TrueType specification is a copyrighted work of Microsoft and Apple and cannot be resold for profit... so the issue of permission raises its head. Invest in your business Fonts and keyboard lettering are assets to your business. They move with you through upgrades and give you an edge with customers who are always looking for something different. The current economic environment demands that you seek your competitive edge and then keep improving and refining. When fonts are a major part of your business and you get repeat orders for similar styles or everyone else has the same fonts you do and you need a competitive edge, consider adding to your library or investing the time in digitizing. When your clients are asking for new and different, and you are spending Selecting Software 1. Does the lettering that comes with your software run like a font (and then explain if you have to) or is it simply easily-accessible lettering that I will have to edit? hours editing fonts that just don't work, you can find a font expert and purchase fonts that run well or you can learn to create your own lettering. Sometimes we get accustomed to what we see, buy into the sales pitch that is tossed our way. We think that is the best so we don't look further. But we should. We should keep our minds open and ask the questions that allow us to learn about what we do as professionals and what we are sold that can make the difference in professional—or not. (Author's note: Special thanks for insight from Janet Linstrom, Nevi Appanna and Terri Hanson on this topic.) Shop for digitizing software separately from the machine purchase and as carefully as you do your machine. Here are questions to ask when considering a particular program: 2.I am interested in learning how to create fonts… not just lettering. I want to become an expert and sell my creations. Does your software allow that? 3.Do you offer the training that will allow me to learn the program from a font creator's point of view? Ask and get answers to these questions, shop and compare, and do so face-to-face and in-person at The NBM Show. See Datebook on page 90 to find a show near you and go to to register. 74 | Printwear PW_FEB13b.indd 74 pw February 2013 1/21/13 11:17 AM

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