March '17

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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74 || P R I N T W E A R M A R C H 2 0 1 7 onto the board and then adjust the fixture to get the hoop in the cor- rect spot. Keep moving the fixture around until you can feel the recess that the hoop goes in directly under the marked spot on the garment. Once the fixture is in the correct spot, good hooping systems will have a way to document this setup. The one used in this demonstration has a number and letter grid to re- cord this placement. Once setup, this number and let- ter grid allow us to hoop the next shirt in the same spot without re- peating the process of measuring and marking each garment. This setup can also be written down and documented for future orders. If you are changing shirt size or style, you will want to mark a shirt again to verify your setup is still correct. ADJUSTING THE HOOP Next, "pre-tension" the hoop. This takes into account the thickness of the item to be embroidered and the backing material. Based on these factors, the outer ring on the hoop needs to be adjusted so that the gap is about the size of what will be needed to hold the garment. This is always a little bit of a guessing game, but it will get easier with experience. Once the hoop is adjusted, place it in the fixture with the backing material and then pull the garment over the board. I normally don't try to get the garment straight the first time I try to hoop it. I sometimes even just pull an area near the bottom of the shirt over the hoop area. This way I can press down the top hoop and see if the two hoops were properly adjusted before I waste time try- ing to get everything perfectly aligned. This can also help reduce the chance of placing a hoop mark or "burn" on the garment where the item is to be embroidered. The proper tension on the outer ring is something that takes a little practice. When it is adjusted correctly, you should be able to press the top hoop over the garment and inner hoop with little ef- fort. If the hoop is too tight, it can damage the fibers in the garment and stretch the ma- terial during hooping, which will cause puckering when the hoop is removed. If the hoop is too loose, it can fall off dur- ing embroidery and will also cause registration problems. When the hoop is at the proper tension, the backing on the back of the garment should be tight. When you run your finger over the gar- ment in the hoop, you should not be able to easily push a ripple of fabric in front of your finger. This is a fine line as you need to make sure the fabric is not loose, but also not stretched. If it is not correct, don't try to adjust after hooping, Instead, take the hoop off and start over. Adjusting the screw after hooping can do more damage to the garment and will not give you a consistent tension all the way around the hoop. Once the hoop is set for a shirt, the adjustment should not change a lot be- tween runs. HOOPING & PLACEMENT TO ADVERTISE CONTACT DIANE GILBERT AT 800-669-0424, EXT. 297 DGILBERT@NBM.COM DISPLAY ADVERTISING The Marketplace continued on page 95 Top: A good hooping ac- cessory will have a very visible way of marking placement so it can be documented for future use. (Image courtesy Mid- west Products Inc.) Mid- dle: A good rule of thumb for left-chest placement is to follow the shoulder seam and collar and then move down several inches. (Image courtesy Midwest Products Inc.) Bottom: Before committing to your hooping, make sure that all placement is correct and the hoop itself has been properly pre-ten- sioned. (Image courtesy Midwest Products Inc.)

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