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Midwest Stitch Blog

Read about our latest news, interesting stories, frequently asked questions and embroidery-specific information in this blog. Check back often, or subscribe by email using the link above. Thanks for visiting!
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What is Pique fabric? (And How do you Pronounce It?)

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What is Pique Fabric?

Whether you realize it or not, you are most likely familiar with pique fabric. Put simply, pique is a knit-construction fabric characterized by a geometric pattern texture which is created by raised cords. If that's too technical for you, notice the pictures in this article. Take a close look at the blue fabric pattern surrounding the Gensler Garden's logo. You'll notice this fabric looks a bit like honeycomb when viewed up close. You'll see polos constructed with this type of fabric everywhere.  Check out the video on this page to learn more.

How Do You Pronounce Pique?

Pique is pronounced (pee-kay) when in reference to fabric. Although spelled the same, the pronunciation is different from "pique" as in this sentence: he made remarks to pique their curiosity.

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7 Things You Never Knew About Your Fleece Jacket [Infographic]

Check out this infographic we created with 7 milestones in the history of your fleece jacket, as well as tips to help you choose the right one for your activity.

Click here to see the infographic

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Seeing is Believing: Why Proofing Is a Vital Step

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Are you thinking of outfitting your staff in embroidered apparel but have some anxiety because you’ve never done it before?  Our 7-step order process, from beginning to end (and beyond), takes the pressure off you and makes it easy. (click here to see the 7-steps)

One of your main concerns most likely is that the garments look good.  If they don’t come out looking good, that will reflect poorly on your company brand.  We want you to look good and that’s why the first two steps of Consultation and Digitizing/Proofing your logo are so important. 

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Fabric Talk: How Is Cotton Made Non-Iron?

Fabric Talk: How Is Cotton Made Non-Iron?

Cotton grows naturally as a soft, white material in curly bales on the seeds of a tall plant.  From it comes a fabric that is soft on the skin and comfortable to wear.  But when it comes to business and dress wear, where a smooth and pressed look is expected, this has presented a textile challenge: how to create a dress shirt that keeps the desired polished look and yet still feels soft against the skin?  

Blended or Pure?

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5 Reasons Promoting Your Business This Way is Superior

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When it comes to spending money on promotional items, your company no doubt wants to get the most out of their hard earned money.  Although some of the quality promotional items that come to mind first may be t-shirts and caps, those ideas are not all that unique.  More important, they may not be the best use of your marketing money.  Have you thought of logoed bags and towels?  The superiority of these promotional items can be seen in five major areas: their simplicity, usefulness, variety, longevity and cost effectiveness. 

Simplicity

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Why Digitizing Involves More Than You Think [Interview]

One of the first steps taken in the embroidery process is the digitization of a logo.  This step creates a digital file that will speak to our embroidery machines and tell them how to proceed with the embroidery.  In this age of technology some assume this process is as easy as the push of a button, although this is far from the case.  

To give you a window in the mind of an embroidery digitizer, we spoke with our own in-house digitizer, Carla.  You may be surprised to learn the skill and knowledge required to perform this task.

What do you need to start digitizing a logo?Carla: First I need high resolution artwork of what needs to be digitized. What type of factors do you consider before starting a new digitizing project?Carla: I consider the size of the overall design, what type of garment it will be sewn on, and the optimal sequence of sew out. Why does the type of garment matter?Carla: It could be embroidery for caps, shirts, sweatshirts, jackets, etc.  I will adjust the sequence of embroidered objects depending on the type of garment to help with registration and to lessen puckering and thread breaks. Are there any other factors that effect the sequence?Carla: I consider the amount of thread colors and objects that are next to each other so the machine doesn't have to move around so much.  This makes for smoother, better looking embroidery. Is the type of fabric being embroidered relevant to the digitizing process?Carla: Oh yes.  It impacts the density of the stitches you need to have.  Too many stitches can make a hole in the garment, cause major puckering, many thread breaks and other undesired outcomes.  So knowing the type of fabric ahead of time is very important.  If the same logo is being embroidered on a variety of fabrics I will make different files for each fabric. Are there other factors in regards to the garment you keep in mind?Carla: The color of the garment versus the color of the embroidery can make a difference in how I digitize a logo.  For example if it's going to be a high contrast embroidery such as white on black fabric, or more of a tone on tone embroidery such as gray on black fabric. Does creativity come in to play when you're digitizing a logo?Carla: Quite often.  Creativity with texture is needed on objects that may not show in flat artwork.  For example if a logo includes elements such as water, fire or trees, to name a few that come to mind.  There are embroidery methods that will make these elements pop out almost in a 3-D manner.  The way the light catches different directional thread also comes into play. How long have you been digitizing artwork for embroidery?Carla: About 14 years.  Great, now I feel old. Thanks to Carla for giving us some insight into the digitizing process.  We are really glad to have her as an important member of Midwest Stitch. 
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What You May Not Know About Performance Wear

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Performance wear used to be almost exclusive to the field of athletics, but today it has become popular for everyday wear and can be found from the board room to the tennis court. 

So, you may be asking: What makes a fabric worthy of the word 'performance'?  Whereas the designation 'performance wear' can have a broad application, the features may include many of the following properties:

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