About Custom Digitizing

What is custom digitizing?
Digitizing is the process that converts a picture into an embroidery design.  It is accomplished on the computer using the picture as a template.  The finished product is a computer file formatted for a specific brand of embroidery machine.

What can I have digitized?
Theoretically, anything you can take a picture of can be digitized for machine embroidery.  Practically speaking, some subjects translate better into embroidery stitches than others, although I have yet to be sent anything that was impossible to digitize!  :)

What about copyrighted or trademarked designs?
If you send me a picture of artwork or a logo to be digitized, I will assume you either own the copyright to it or have received written permission from the copyright owner to have it digitized for machine embroidery.  If it is a nationally recognized logo, I will probably ask that you furnish the written permission.  This is to protect both of us from possible copyright infringement.

What do I need to send to request a quote?
    I need you to send me a picture of what you want digitized.  JPG format is preferred, although I can open most any common graphic format with my software.  Proprietary formats are questionable (ie., formats used by specific graphic design software).  One thing to remember about the picture is that it should be at least as big as the finished embroidery design.  If it is too small, I may not be able to see the detail well enough to digitize it.  One way or another, we need to get the picture into my computer.  Most often, it is a simple matter of attaching the graphic file to an email message and sending it to me.  If you don't have it in your computer to send and you don't have the ability to scan it, you can snap a digital photo of it and text it or email it to me. Alternatively, you can send it through the postal service (include a self-addressed stamped envelope if you want it returned).
    I also need some information from you.  How big do you want the finished design?  What kind of fabric will it go on?  What machine format do you need?  And any other specifics that you feel I need to know.  

How can I request a quote?
    Most quotes are firm and will be sent within 24 hours of your request.  You will be told if the quote is just an estimate.  Use the Digitizing Request Form to send your request.

How long is the quote good for?
    30 days; images submitted for fee quotes are deleted after 30 days.

What do I need to do to proceed with the digitizing?
    If you like the price quoted, you will need to send a deposit to initiate the digitizing process.  

How do I send a deposit?
     You can send a personal check, bank check, money order, or Paypal for at least 50% of the quoted fee, or, you can send credit card information in lieu of a deposit.  If you have ordered from me before using a credit card, I should still have your information on file and you do not need to send it again.  Use the Digitizing Request Form to send credit card info, pay by Paypal, or to find contact info for postal mail.

When is the balance due?
    If you sent a deposit by check/money order/Paypal, the balance will be due after you approve the 3D simulation and before the design is emailed to you.  If you sent credit card information, the charge for the full amount is made at this time as well.

How long does it take to have my design digitized?
    Most logos take 2-3 business days from receipt of a deposit.

How much does it cost?
    It depends entirely upon the size and complexity of the design.  I do not charge based on stitch count.  Minimum charge is $25, and that is for something very simple.

Do you take rush orders?
If you need the design quicker than 2-3 business days, you may request a rush order and the fee is an additional 50% of the regular fee quote.

What formats do you provide?
I digitize in either .HUS (Viking), .VIP (Viking/Pfaff) or .DST (Tajima) format.  I can convert to .ART, .CSD, .EXP, .JEF, .PCS, .PES, .SHV, .SEW, .VP3, .XXX, and a number of other less common stitch file formats.  As a general rule, I do not provide the object file (.CAN for Viking, .SSP for StitchShopPro, or .GEN for Generations), although sometimes an arrangement can be made to provide that as well.

What software do you use?
    I use the Husqvarna Viking Digitizing Pro, Generations, or StitchShopPro by Needleheads to digitize.  I use Embird or Buzztools to colorize or convert to other formats.

Can I request multiple sizes?
    Certainly.  It is always best to resize a design in the software used to digitize it originally than to try and resize it in a resizing program.  Assuming there is no editing or test stitching required for the additional size(s), then you can request 1 additional size at no extra charge.  Subsequent additional sizes are $5 or more, depending on the editing or testing necessary.   If required, most editing results in a charge of $5-$15, depending on the design and the difference in size from the original.

Can I request variations of the design?
    Yes, and there may or may not be a charge attached to that.  Please specify when requesting a quote.

Do I get to approve the design before I pay for it?
    In the interest of the quickest turnaround time, we will send a preview only when we have a question about how you want the design to look. Many designs are pretty straight forward.  On the other hand, if you request a preview in advance, we are happy to provide one.  In this case, once the design is digitized, we will send you via email a 3D simulation of the design to approve.  It is at this time that you will need to catch anything about the design that does not look like what you had in mind.

What if I need something changed?
    Changes can always be made.  However, if it is something that is different from what was originally requested (and priced), there may be an additional charge for the change.  In any case, the time to catch that is when you are sent the 3D to approve.  If you make changes after I have sent you the stitch file, there may be an additional testing fee as well.

Will my design be tested before it is sent to me?
    In the interest of the quickest turnaround time, it will only be tested if it is a particularly tricky or detailed design.  It will be tested on the fabric (or something close) that you specified in your request. Otherwise, we will remind you to do a test run yourself on a scrap of fabric before putting the design on the item to be embroidered.  Please note, a test stitchout on felt or cutaway backing, with no fabric, is NOT a good test of how your design will do on the final item. Whether we test or not, you can be confident that any adjustments needed to correct stitching problems found during a test will be corrected free of charge.

How will I receive my design?
    Unless otherwise requested, I will send you your design attached to an email message.

Should I do my own trial stitchout?
    By all means, YES!  Even if you stitch yours on the same machine that I did my trial stitchout, there are so many factors that can affect the quality of your finished design, that a trial stitchout at your end is strongly recommended.  As much as possible, try to duplicate the fabric, stabilizer, thread, and needle that will be used on your final run.

What if I have stitching problems with my trial stitchout?
    Please let me know as soon as possible.  It could be something simple like the type of stabilizer you used.  I stand behind my designs and strive to provide you with the best quality stitchout that you can expect with your machine.  If you run into any kind of stitching problems that you cannot resolve and you suspect it is the design, email me and I will try my best to correct it.

I'm ready!  What do I do now?
    Send me your request using the Digitizing Request Form and let's get this ball rolling!

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