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Need Machine Selection Advice

Posted by safetylady (My Page) on
Tue, Jan 9, 07 at 23:21

Hi everyone! I'm new to embroidery and I'm looking to purchase a machine for an online store that my best friend and I are going to start. We will be embroidering names and perhaps small symbols or logos onto items. I want a nice machine that will enable me to create a logo and then send it to the machine. I doubt that I would be doing anything other than smaller designs, and I would not be doing whole shirt fronts.

I checked out some of the Viking machines at JoAnn's tonight, but the one the rep showed me was a bit pricy (the Designer 1). I'm looking for something along the lines of $800 or less.

Can anyone help me decide? If you need more info, please ask and I will reply.

Thank you all in advance for your help!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Need Machine Selection Advice

The current SewNews magazine has a pull out section on embroidery machines this month.

A machine is not going to allow you to create a logo. That's a software program. My software was $1500 & I still haven't learned to use it. Your cost expectation is low for what you plan to do.


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RE: Need Machine Selection Advice

I don't understand... then what is the $500 software that Viking has? I don't need digitizing capabilities yet, I just want to be able to create a logo. I understand that the software is what creates the logo, but I still need a machine that is able to accept designs that I've made.


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RE: Need Machine Selection Advice

If you want to create a logo, you need digitizing capabilities Which means you need software that will do that. Once you settle on a machine you will need software to go with it to create your designs. Embroidery design gets to be pretty expensive when you figure that after the machine and software you need to buy thread and stabilizers to use with the machine. Also unless you have a machine that will hook up directly to your computer, you will need a reader/writer box to transfer the designs to a card. Colleen


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RE: Need Machine Selection Advice

Thanks colleen! So, if I just pick a machine that is able to read cards or USB or floppy, I should be able to make whatever designs I want (so long as I have the right software)? I'm getting confused about that, I think.

I was thinking about getting Embird's software. I noticed that a lot of people on here have it.

What are people's thoughts on the Brother Innovis 1200?


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RE: Need Machine Selection Advice

You need to go to some dealers, read everything you can & just basically do your homework. Before machine selection, you need to really narrow down what you want to do with it...how big are you going to embroidery & etc. Relay this to dealers. I don't want to burst your bubble, but you won't likely be able to run a successful & profitable business with an inexpensive household machine. I have 4 hoop sizes. My medium is a 4x4. I rarely use it. My large is a 4x6. I use it most for names logos & etc. I do a lot of first names on dress fronts. Many take my largest 5X7. Some things people want to be read from across the room not face to face.

Most machines that I am aware of have some built in fonts. That's not what customers want. There are tons of "true fonts" on computers that software can digitize. Curlz, Book Worm & on & on. Some people say I want a "pretty" S, J or something. Some alphabets are good all way through but some Js look like Is & other letters not practical as well. That is what we use our software for because that process is not difficult(for my daughter). I haven't tried it due to time & other issues. I could watch her & make me some cheat sheets & work through it but I can't understand the manual or the tutorials we bought. Some of us just learn by different methods.

Our machines take a floppy. We don't need any software to download designs from the internet as long as they are in our format but we have to have WinZip. If not, my daughter knows how to convert with our software. Our machine sizes up & down 10% to 20%. The software will allow other increments but things don't always stitch out good after resizing.

It is not cheap to launch an embroidery business or embroidery as a hobby. I would say more of our work is gifts for friends or within the family. We save a lot of money doing them. Our business part is mostly word of mouth locally but my daughter does some e-bay sales.

You will need different kinds of stabilizers,using an average of 3 kinds per project (especially knits). We buy bolts not yards. Then you need a wide range of thread colors. Just last night, we put one big initial on a pink top trimmed in brown. We were told to match the brown. Do you know how many dark browns are out there? I use ARC polyester thread. They have 288 colors or more now. I bought their full color range for $350. That price was a steal & no more trips to the store for a specific color but coming up with that much money for thread was what I requested as a gift. On most gift giving occassions, when asked, I have requested funds for embroidery supplies in the 4 1/2 years I have had my machine.

Thread Artist has an embroidery site with free lessons that were very useful for me when I started. They will make more sense if you do your homework first. I think they have a list of terms too. If you find those, the embroidery conversations you have will be clearer.

Another factor to figure in is mistakes. They do happen be it on a $6 towel or a $50 knit shirt. The biggest worry is do they happen on your items or something a customer brought in.

Christmas work load brought us several problems this year. I had surgery, my sister had surgery twice. We were tired & distracted & I was hurting & coughing but we were trying to get the orders out. We have several things down there that we plan to try to salvage for us to use. Things we don't really want or need but can't even be used for gifts if we can fix them.

There is a lot to learn about this. Good luck on your adventure.


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RE: Need Machine Selection Advice

Wow, thanks for the info! I will check out the site you mentioned.


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