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Art For Embroidery

Main Points Of Embroidery File Review

The first step in embroidered custom decorated apparel is receiving and reviewing client art files. All digital files are redrawn as virtual stitches to communicate the design to the embroidery machine . The process for redrawing a design or logo as stitches is called digitizing. The cleanest files produce the most perfect embroidery.

Letter Size - Letters can be no smaller than .25” or they will not embroider well.
Detail - Super fine detail will likely be compromised. Most embroidered logos are small by nature, thread is a fixed width and the fabric adds an element of compromise.
Gradients - Complicated gradients can sew very well. Keep in mind, however, that stitches do not blend, so the gradient will be less smooth in appearance than what you see on your computer screen.

File Types

Preferred Format

Vector files created in Adobe Illustrator (ai, eps, pdf) with fonts converted to outlines. This format produces the highest quality embroidery.

These images, logos, or designs are created using paths instead of pixels. This means the file is perfectly clean even when zoomed in or scaled. It is very easy to see definition in shapes and designate stitches.


Here is our Sharprint logo as a vector file.


In this image, you can see the paths
that make up the logo.

Acceptable Format

Raster files created in Adobe Photoshop (jpg, tif, gif, png, eps) at a minimum of 150dpi at the final image size.

These images, designs, or logos are composed of pixels rather than paths. When zoomed in it is more difficult to see detail and where shapes begin and end. For this reason a digitizer must do some creative estimating. Your end embroidery may not be as exact as you would like it to be.


Here is the same Sharprint logo as a raster


When zoomed in, you can see the pixels
that make up the logo. Notice how the
color areas are not as clearly defined.

Logo Embroidery

With the recent technology advances in the apparel industry, it's important to understand the advantages and limitations of embroidery. This guide will provide you and your customers with a strong foundation in:

  • Artwork requirements
  • Various fabrics & backing
  • Thread types and color options
  • Stitch type options
  • The ordering process & what to expect