Printwear

July '12

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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with that metallic in mind. Those sub- bing out digitizing should inform the digitizer of the particular metallic, its weight, and what it will be stitched on, so they can digitize appropriately. Stitch lengths and density will be affected by the choice of thread. Those editing designs in-house should reduce the density in metallic areas by about 20 percent. Or, increase the size of the design by 10 percent, which should have the same effect. The nature of me- tallic thread is to be a little less pliable. Therefore, tensions need to be readjusted. Run a sample on the production fabric before attempting to run the production order. Metallic thread should run well, provided that tensions are looser than normal. Specific fabric type and weight, along with the execution of the design, will de- termine how loose or tight the tensions should be set. MACHINE CONSIDERATIONS When stitching with metallic on any ma- chine, make certain the equipment is in excellent running condition. The thread guides should be free of rough spots. When switching to metallic from another thread type, start with a new needle. Also, bobbin cases should be checked and cleaned. Finally, slow down a little! Especially for more intricate designs, a slower machine speed will give better results. For example, set the speed at 650-700 spm at first. You can always speed up if all is going well. Competition in the decorated apparel market is steep. Embroiderers need every edge they can find. Mastering metallics will put you ahead of the shop that just opened up down the street. Far Left: The simple metallic design on this denim pocket was done in 30 weight. It il- lustrates that even a small touch of metallic can add a lot of style. Left: Digitized by Bon- nie Nielsen, this pho- to-realism effect was achieved with the use of only two colors of 45 weight metallic em- broidery thread. NEEDLE SELECTION Various metallic thread weights require the correct needle for best productivity. Here' s a quick reference for the right needle to pull the thread at hand. THREAD NEEDLE #50 ........................... #65/9 #45 ........................... #90/14 #40 ........................... #75/11 #35 ........................... #90/14 #30 ........................... #90/14 #20 ........................... #100/16 #15 ........................... #100/16 Supertwist #30................. #90/14 Supertwist #12 ................. #100/16 66 | PRINTWEAR JULY 2012 Metallic embroidery thread comes in a wide range of textures, colors and weights, offering a tremendous amount of choice. Even variegated metallics are available. SFX EMBROIDERY

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