How to Use Auto Fabric or Create Your Own Custom Fabric Settings

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Choosing the right fabric settings for best machine embroidery results

Machine embroidery stitches pull fabric inward where the needle penetrates. This can cause fabric to pucker and gaps to appear. For an object to stitch out correctly, it must have the correct stitch spacing, sufficient pull compensation, together with a suitable underlay for the combination of cover stitch type, object type, object shape and fabric. The Auto Fabric tool in Hatch Embroidery provides a set of optimized settings, so that it will take into account the type of fabric you are stitching on.

Using Auto Fabric

Choose from a set of pre-defined Auto Fabric settings aimed at minimizing stitching defects when designs are stitched out. These make the necessary changes to the system settings – e.g. ‘pull compensation’. The new settings can be applied to all applicable objects. Normally you choose an auto fabric setting when you first set up a design, although you can change it at any stage. Go to the Customize Design toolbox and choose Auto Fabric.

Notice that the Auto Fabric dialog also provides recommended stabilizers according to the selected fabric. Stabilizer backings are woven or non-woven materials placed beneath the item or fabric being embroidered for stability and support. The more stitches a design has, the heavier the backing required. Backings are available in various weights and types such as cut-away, tear-away and wash-away (soluble). Professional embroiderers use tear-away stabilizers for woven fabrics and cut-away stabilizers for knits.

Note: The auto fabric you choose here does not have a direct effect upon the design background or vice versa. It is up to you to set the background fabric to match your chosen auto fabric.

Managing Fabrics

In addition to the pre-defined auto fabric settings, you can create custom fabric settings to suit particular needs. You can also modify, rename or delete any custom fabrics you create.

Select Software Settings > Manage Auto Fabrics. Most of the time, you will come to this dialog in order to edit auto fabric settings or create fabric variants.

To create a variant, select the base fabric and click “Create”. Enter a descriptive name.

Click “OK”. The Fabric Settings dialog opens. This dialog lets you set auto fabric values for four object groups – Tatami/Embossed Fill, Wide Satin, Narrow Satin, and Lettering – as well as details of any recommended stabilizers.

Adjusting Stitch Densities

You may need to change stitch density in order to stitch on a different fabric or with a different thread. Or you may want to do a test design and reduce the overall stitch count for an efficient stitchout. The software lets you change the density of most stitch types across the whole or selected parts of a design.

To override current settings for the entire design, press “<Ctrl+A>” to select everything. Open the dialog and set a percentage adjustment – e.g. 200% to increase stitch spacing and thereby reduce overall density. Check the revised stitch count in the Status Bar. See also Object properties.

Hope this article gave you a good understanding on how to select the correct fabric setting for your machine embroidery projects to achieve the best possible stitch out results every time. It also showed you how you can adjust the settings in case you need to or change the stitch density of your design.


Happy Embroidery!

Bernadett and the Hatch Team



Hatch Embroidery software products are in popular use in over 100 countries. It is time to join the global trend and give Hatch a try! The 30-day Free Trial grants you unlimited use of all the amazing features and the 30-day Money Back Guarantee ensures that there is absolutely no risk involved.

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