CAN I EMBROIDER MY PHOTO’S???

George Clooney "immortalized" in thread!

George Clooney “immortalized” in thread!

CAN I TURN MY PHOTOGRAPHS INTO EMBROIDERIES? I get asked this question quite frequently. There is a lot to be said for capturing memories and special people in mediums other than a jpeg photograph – which, of course, is lovely…..But those of us who have JANOME  embroidery machines also like to know if we can actually EMBROIDER our photo’s too. I am happy to tell you that YES you can.

Now in order to be able to embroider something, the embroidery stitches first have to be created – this process is called digitizing.  Our JANOME DIGITIZER MBX software gives you the ability to do this digitizing. It is our latest software version 4. This software package includes a tool called PHOTO CLICK  which is the tool we would recommend for turning your precious jpeg pics into embroideries. Some previous versions of JANOME DIGITIZER  also contain the PHOTO CLICK tool.  I know version 3 does. Maybe version 2 – not sure as I can’t remember back that far! If you have the little camera icon, you too can digitize your pics!

Capture your home & street address in fabric & thread............are you beginning to see the possibilities?

Capture your home & street address in fabric & thread…………are you beginning to see the possibilities?

This post is not a lesson in how to use PHOTO CLICK. Lessons on how to use your JANOME DIGITIZING SOFTWARE can be obtained from the following places:

  • Your local JANOME  dealer who sold you the software package – they are your first go to place for help and software lessons.
  • Trevor Conquergood of Saskatoon, SK has ongoing webinars and software workshops as well as DVD’s etc. Please consult his website : http://www.sunsetstitches.com/Home.html
  • The Instruction Manual and/or DVD that came with your software is a great place to start. I know we don’t like reading manuals but, seriously, they are there for a reason!

What I rather wanted to do here was show you that turning your pics into embroideries IS a do-able project. Please do not think that the embroidery will be an EXACT replica of Great Aunt Milly. If you try to digitize a jpeg photograph using auto or manual Digitizer tools, it will not be very successful. This is because the Digitizing software (which is object-based) tries to analyse each & every different pixel of colour in the jpeg and what results is this complex mish-mash of tiny embroidery sections that, quite frankly, may look like a dog’s breakfast and not at all what you would have expected! HOWEVER, if you use the PHOTO CLICK  tool instead, it has the capability to analyse the jpeg photograph differently and render it into a close copy of the photo though NOT capturing every minute detail in the pic. Let’s look at some embroideries that were digitized using PHOTO CLICK.

photoclick 1

This was an exercise in using the Photoclick tool for multiple COLOURS in the embroidery - can be done!

This was an exercise in using the Photoclick tool for multiple COLOURS in the embroidery – can be done!

This is not a jpeg photograph - it is a digital artwork file....a drawing of a zebra. This is to show you can use this same PHOTOCLICK tool to digitize other pics - they do not have to be photographs.

This is not a jpeg photograph – it is a digital artwork file….a drawing of a zebra. This is to show you can use this same PHOTOCLICK tool to digitize other pics – they do not have to be photographs.

Here is one version of that zebra PHOTO CLICKED using a 70 degree angle for the grain and a 30 degree angle for the stitches. This can be altered easily for different effects

Here is one version of that zebra PHOTO CLICKED using a 70 degree angle for the grain and a 30 degree angle for the stitches. This can be altered easily for different effects

Another alternative for digitizing photographs is to take the jpeg (or other photograph format) and “clean” it up. This has to be done in a photograph or graphics software program and will require some skill and time to master. But if you can turn a jpeg full of 1000’s & 1000’s of pixels into a more “clean” graphic rather closer to a cartoon image or bitmap file, then that image can be digitized with the auto or manual digitizing tools to render the more usual/expected type of embroidery with stitch fills and satin stitch etc.

Do remember, however, that with any new skill, time and patience is the name of the game in order to master the process and end up with results that are pleasing to you & others.

This is my precious little grand daughter. I am going to use Photo Click to digitize her and then stitch "her" out in a soft brown thread to make it look a bit like a sepia photograph.

This is my precious little grand-daughter. I am going to use Photo Click to digitize her and then stitch “her” out in a soft brown thread to make it look a bit like a sepia photograph.
My little one immortalized in thread ....note that there are irregularities which was caused by thread shredding & breaking issues. Once I changed to a PURPLE TIP needle, the issues stopped - see bottom right corner where the embroidery is much improved.  see blog post coming on 10th May all about our NEEDLES
My little one immortalized in thread ….note that there are irregularities in the embroidery which was caused by thread shredding & breaking issues. Once I changed to a PURPLE TIP needle, the issues stopped – see bottom right corner where the embroidery is much improved.  SEE the blog post coming on 10th May all about our NEEDLES.

Now for the our other little one soon to be a year old:

B

I found that photographs that have lighter backgrounds and not too much fussy detail work better. I also played with the settings in Photo Click to alter the results.
I found that photographs that have lighter backgrounds and not too much fussy detail work better. I also played with the settings in Photo Click to alter the results.

Why not give PHOTO CLICK a try and see what time & patience on your part will yield for you in your JANOME  embroidery hoop?? See your local Janome Dealer today about Janome Digitizer MBX with PHOTO CLICK TOOL.

About lizafrica

I am the National Education Manager for Janome & Elna Canada (including Artistic Creative products) and I LOVE to sew! I have been employed full time in the sewing and quilting industry for almost 30 years so I bring a wealth of sewing knowledge & expertise to this blog. I enjoy all forms of sewing from quilting to sewing garments to machine embroidery and software. Pretty much everything in my life is seen through the eyes of a passionate sewer! I am constantly on the look out for fun, innovative and inspiring ideas to share with you all on this blog. I also love to read, knit , travel and spend time with my family and friends.
This entry was posted in Creativity, Janome Embroidery, JANOME EMBROIDERY SOFTWARE, Janome Fun, Janome Sewing Machine and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to CAN I EMBROIDER MY PHOTO’S???

  1. Thanks for taking time for sharing this article, it was excellent and very informative it’s my first time that I visit here i found a lot of informative stuff in your article keep it up thank you.

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  2. Linda Seemann-Korte says:

    Hi Liz,
    I love it when you post information about using digitizer software! Great information and motivation to try it and use more features of the program. Would be great to have a hands on digitizing session with you!
    Any thing you can share about using the motifs in the program?
    Cheers!
    Linda

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    • lizafrica says:

      Hi Linda,
      Glad you enjoyed the post. We are all going to be able to go on an armchair (or computer chair?) journey next week to Bali!! Watch for your story on 30th April.
      When you say motifs, are you referring to the little designs in the Embroidery Gallery (top tab Embroidery >drop down menu Embroidery gallery)? If so, I did do a blog post on making my own texturized fabric or fabric yardage covered with embroidery. I used the Embroidery gallery emblems or motifs for this. You will find this post: MAKING YOUR OWN EMBROIDERED FABRIC YARDAGE USING JANOME DIGITIZING SOFTWARE Posted on February 8, 2013
      If this is not what you meant, let me know.
      Liz

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