Commercial Embroidery Dictionary

Osman Bayrak


Editing function to rotate the pattern in a counterclockwise direction. Angle can be programmed in 1 degree increments up to 359.

APPLIQUÉ Decoration or trimming cut from one piece of fabric and stitched to another, usually with a satin stitch around the edge. Adds dimension and/or texture to a design.
BACKING Woven or non-woven material used underneath the item or fabric being embroidered. Provides support and stability. Available in two basic types - cutaway and tearaway. Also known as stabilizer in the home embroidery market.
BATTERY BACK-UP System that provides power to preserve stitch memory and pantograph position in case of machine power loss.
BEAN STITCH Three stitches placed back and forth between two points. Often used for outlining.
BIRDNESTING Collection of thread between the embroidered goods and the throat plate, resembling a bird's nest. Caused by improper stitch formation.
BOBBIN Round assembly that holds the lower thread. The bobbin thread combines with the top thread to form a stitch.
BOBBIN CASE Case that houses the bobbin and fastens it into the hook assembly. It also allows for tensioning of the bobbin thread.
BOBBIN THREAD Thread that is interlocked with the top thread to form a stitch.

CAP FRAME The hardware used to embroider finished caps. Includes the cap frame drive unit, the framing device and the actual cap frame.
CHECK SPRING Small spring located on the tension assembly, coiled around with a horseshoe-type loop at the end, also known as the take-up spring. Used to take up the slack of the thread as the machine is sewing. Works with the thread break detector to determine thread breaks.
CODE The format under which pattern information is stored on paper tape. When a pattern is transferred to memory from paper tape, you must indicate the tape code.
COLOR CHANGE Code embedded in a design that tells the machine to change to a different needle, to sew with a different color thread.
CUTAWAY BACKING Woven or non-woven material placed under the fabric being embroidered to add stability. Must be cut away after sewing. Cutaway is typically used on less stable, stretchy fabrics such as knits.

DESIGN Stitches that compose a pattern or monogram.
DESIGN ORIGIN The starting point of the design- the position of the pantograph when the Start button is first pressed.
DIGITIZE The computerized method of converting art work into a series of commands to be read by an embroidery machine.
DISPOSITION Monogram parameter to select one of five letter arrangements.
DRIVE KEY Used to complete a mode operation, such as Delete or Chain.

EDIT Process of permanently changing a pattern by scaling or angling the pattern or adding, changing or deleting function codes.
EMBLEM Embroidered design with a finished edge, commonly an insignia. Also known as a crest or patch.
EMERGENCY STOP BUTTON The large red button or buttons located on the front of the Barudan machine. When pressed, removes all power from the machine immediately.
EMBROIDERY Decorative stitching on fabric. Generally involves designs, but can also include lettering or monogramming.
EYE The circular opening in a needle that carries the top thread through the fabric and into the bobbin assembly.

FACING See "topping."
FILL STITCH Series of running stitches commonly used to cover large areas. Different fill patterns can be created by varying the length, angle or repeating sequence of the stitches.
FIX PATTERN TYPE Thread Cut parameter that compensates for patterns punched for machines without automatic thread trimmers.
FLAGGING Up and down motion of the goods being embroidered caused by the presser foot action. So named because of its resemblance to a waving flag. Often caused by improper framing of goods. Flagging may result in poor design registration, poor stitch formation and bird-nesting.
FLOAT Machine function that traces through the design, stitch by stitch, without sewing- used for mending.
FLOPPY DISK Media for permanent pattern storage. Barudan machines use either double-density or high-density 3.5" disks.
FLOPPY DISK DRIVE Located in the right side of the automat. Provides a means of design storage and retrieval from a floppy disk.
FORMAT Computer language a particular 3.5" disk will use. The formatting of disks varies between machine manufacturers.
FRAME Holding device for goods to be embroidered. Ensures stability of the goods during the sewing process. See also hoop.
FRAME MOVE DATA Thread Cut parameter that sets the amount of pantograph movement after a thread trim.
FUNCTION CODE Special commands within an embroidery design which instruct specific action on the machine. These include jump stitches, thread trims and color changes. This information is attached to a specific stitch of the design.

GROOVE The channel on the front of the needle that provides a place for the thread to sit when the needle penetrates the material, so that the loop will form behind the needle.

HEAD SHUT-OFF Switch located on the side of the Barudan sewing head, mechanically disengages the sewing head from the drive shaft. Used primarily on multi-head machines.
HOOK ASSEMBLY A rotating assembly that grabs the top thread off the needle and loops it around the bobbin, thus forming a stitch. Consists of two interlocking pieces, one is called the basket, which remains stationary and houses the bobbin case and bobbin. The other is the hook, which rotates while the machine is sewing.
HOOK POINT The sharp, pointed tip on the hook assembly which grabs the loop of the thread behind the needle to form a stitch.
HOOK RACE An internal part of the hook. A channel that allows the hook to spin around the hook basket.
HOOK TIMING Proper positioning of the hook assembly in relation to the needle in forming a stitch.
HOOP Device made from plastic, metal or wood that grips the fabric tightly between an inner and outer ring and attaches it to the machine pantograph. Also referred to as a frame.
HOOPING BOARD Device that aids in hooping/framing garments or items for embroidery. Helps ensure uniform placement of the hoop onto the material.
HORIZONTAL Refers to front to back movement of the pantograph on the machine.

ICON Pictorial representation of an option available from a menu on the machine screen.
INITIALIZE Process of formatting a new floppy disk.

JOG KEYS Four arrow keys on the Barudan automat that move the pantograph vertically and horizontally.
JUMP JOG Movement programmed between patterns that are chained. Moves the pantograph to position the patterns vertically or horizontally, without allowing the machine to stitch.
JUMP STITCH Movement of the pantograph and rotation of the sewing head without the needle going down. Used to move from one point in a design to another or to create stitches that are longer than the machine would normally allow.

KEYBOARD Assembly with typewriter style keys that allow the operator to control and load information into the computer.

LETTERING Embroidery using letters or words. Often called keyboard lettering. Usually computer generated either on the machine or a stand-alone computer.
LIQUID CRYSTAL DISPLAY Located in the front of the automat. Shows information about the pattern and menu selections.
LOCK STITCH Commonly refers to a series of three to four very small stitches (1mm or less) either just before a trim or at the beginning of sewing following a thread trim. Used to prevent the stitching from unraveling after the embroidery is completed.

The type of stitch used on most computerized embroidery machines (as well as home sewing machines) involving a needle, a hook and bobbin thread.

LOCK STITCH TYPE Thread Cut parameter that inserts lock stitches before/after thread trims and determines the pattern of the lock stitch.
LOOP Used to describe the loop of top thread that forms behind the needle when the needle has gone all the way down and just starts to rise. The hook grabs this loop to form a stitch.
LOOPING The appearance of embroidery when the stitches are too loose. Usually caused by insufficient tensioning.
LOW SPEED FUNCTION User Parameter that sets the machine to run at a lower speed than that set by the speed control knob.
LOWER TENSIONER Set of tension disks for each needle on the machine located between the primary tensioner and the take up lever. Has a rotating disk and holds the check spring. Used for controlling thread flow. See also tensioner.

MIRROR A program menu option that allows reverse imaging of a pattern to be sewn. See also Rotate Pattern.
MODE KEY Selects one of the various memory operation modes.
MONOGRAM Embroidered design composed of one or more letters, usually the name or initials of someone's name.

NEEDLE Small, slender piece of steel that penetrates the fabric, carrying the thread through into the hook assembly. The needle has an eye for carrying the thread, a groove for holding the top thread as the fabric is pierced and a scarf to allow free passage of the hook point.
NEEDLE BAR Metal rod that holds the needle so that it can be driven up and down.
NUMERIC KEYS Number keys on the keyboard, used to select values.

ORIGIN The start point, or beginning, of a pattern.
ORIGIN KEY Located in the center of the Jog keys. Returns the pantograph to the start (origin) position of the design the last time it was sewn.

PANTOGRAPH The assembly on top of the table which moves the hoop left to right and front to back.
PANTOGRAPH POSITIONING Using the jog keys to move the frame to the desired location.
PAPER TAPE Pattern storage media, a continuous reel of perforated paper. The perforations contain the pattern information in coded format.
PATTERN The sequence of stitches that make up a design or monogram.
POSITION FINGER Small black retainer sitting directly in front of the hook assembly. The position finger keeps the basket of the hook assembly from turning. It also maintains a small gap that allows the bobbin thread to pass through.
POWER ON BUTTON Turns the machine on when pressed.
POWER SOURCE SWITCH Turns power on/off for entire machine.
PRESSER BAR The bar to which the presser foot is attached. The presser bar moves with the other internal parts of the sewing head, which allows the presser foot to jump with the motion of sewing.
PRESSER FOOT A metal ring around the needle that moves with the needle bar and holds the fabric down while the needle penetrates it. Aids in loop formation.
PRETENSIONER DISKS Set of tension disks for each needle on the machine. Located on the thread stand of the machine. Controls the flow of thread from the cone to the primary tensioner. See also tensioner.
PRIMARY TENSIONER Set of tension disks for each needle on the machine. Located between the pre-tensioner and the lower tensioner. Controls the tautness of the thread for variations in fabrics and thread types. See also tensioner.
PROGRAM Under the Memory menu, parameters that allow the alteration of the appearance and orientation of the design.
PUCKERING Result of the fabric being gathered by the stitches. Causes include loose hooping, insufficient backing or incorrect thread tension.
PUSH AND PULL COMPENSATION Digitizing technique that takes into account the distortion of the design that will occur because of the interaction of the thread with the material. This can cause a perfect circle to appear egg shaped when sewn out. Generally, it is necessary to extend horizontal elements and reduce vertical elements.

QUEUING Term used to describe machine's ability to program the next monogram while current one is sewing.

REGISTRATION Correct registration is achieved when all stitches and design elements line up correctly.
ROTATE PATTERN Program parameter that rotates the design in 90 degree increments counterclockwise, with or without mirror imaging the design.
RUNNING STITCH A single stitch between two points used for final detail, outlining and underlay. Also known as a walk stitch.

SATIN STITCH Formed by closely arranged zigzag stitches such as a column. Can be laid down at any angle and with varying stitch lengths. Used mostly for lettering and outlining designs.
SCALE Program parameter used to expand or condense the size of the design without changing the number of stitches. A separate scale parameter is used for each direction.
SCARF A notch or cutout located on the back of the needle allowing the point of the hook to get close enough to the needle to grab the thread.
SHIFT KEY Used in monogram programming to select lower case letters and punctuation.
SLOW UP COUNT User parameter to program the number of stitches the machine will sew at a slower speed before accelerating to normal speed.
SPEED CONTROL Knob that adjusts the sewing speed of the machine.
SPEED INDICATOR Portion of the memory display that indicates the current sewing speed in RPM (stitches per minute).
STABILIZER See "Backing."
START KEY Used to start the machine stitching.

Sewing function that traces back through a design. Used to repair skipped stitches.
STITCH EDITING A computer function allowing one or more stitches in a pattern to be altered or deleted.
STITCH FORMATION The process of making one complete stitch. The eye of the needle carries the top thread through the fabric, as the needle reaches its lowest point and begins to rise, a loop is formed behind the needle. As the needle rises, the point of the hook approaches and grabs the loop off of the needle. The thread is then carried around the bobbin by the hook, twisting it around the bobbin thread. The take up lever then pulls the thread up pulling the stitch tight.
STITCH JOG Patterns can be combined in chain with movement between them. Stitch Jog tacks down stitches as the pantograph moves to the proper position for the next pattern to begin.
STITCH SELECTION Sewing function that moves the pantograph to a specific stitch number.
STOP KEY Used to stop the machine while sewing.

TACKLE TWILL Letters or numbers cut from polyester or rayon twill fabric, commonly used for athletic teams and organizations. Tackle Twill appliqués attached to a garment typically have an adhesive backing that tacks them in place; the edges of the appliqués are then sewn to the garment with a zig-zag stitch.
TAKE-UP LEVER Pulls the thread through the fabric after the stitch has been made, controlling the flow of thread during stitch formation.
TAKE-UP SPRING Small spring located on the tension assembly, coiled around with a horseshoe shaped loop at the end. Used to pick up the slack of the thread as the machine is sewing. Works with the thread break detector to determine thread breaks. Also called a check spring.
TATAMI STITCH Series of running stitches commonly used to cover large areas. Different fill patterns can be created by varying the length, angle or repeating sequence of the stitches. See also fill stitch.

Machine menu that modifies the color sequence in a design; actually changing the function code that is embedded in the design.
TEARAWAY BACKING A non-woven material placed under the fabric being embroidered to add stability to the fabric. Can be torn away after stitching. Typically used on more stable fabrics such as woven goods.
TENSION Tautness of the thread used to form stitches. Top thread tension as well as bobbin thread tension need to be correctly set for proper stitch formation and for good appearance of the embroidery. Proper tension is typically achieved when there is one-third bobbin and two-thirds top thread showing on the underside of the material when using satin stitching.
TENSIONER A device used to apply pressure directly to the thread in order to control the tension being applied to the thread. Usually consists of a post, a tension knob, tension spring and two tension disks, which when the thread is placed between applies pressure to the thread.
THREAD Fine cord of natural or synthetic fibers made of two or more filaments twisted together and used for stitching. Embroidery threads are available in rayon, polyester, cotton, acrylic or metallic.
THREAD BREAK DETECTOR Device that detects thread breakage, stopping the machine automatically to allow the operator to rethread the needle.
THREAD BREAK INDICATOR Small light on the front of the sewing head that flashes when a thread break has been detected.
THREAD CHECK COUNT User parameter that programs how quickly the machine responds to a thread break.
THREAD CLIPPERS Small spring loaded scissors designed to be operated with just the thumb and forefinger. Used to clip thread.
THREAD CUT JOB Thread Cut parameter that sets the thread trimmer program.
THREAD JUMP COUNT Thread Cut parameter that controls the number of jump stitches above which the thread trimmer will cut the thread.

Pin that secures the thread. When a needle is selected, the pin moves out of the way for the thread to move freely.
THREAD STAND Platform of spindles on top of the sewing head that holds the cones of thread.
TOP THREAD Sewn thread that shows on the top of the fabric.
TOP THREAD TENSIONERS Applies the correct amount of pressure on the top thread so that the take-up spring responds in a manner that allows a stitch to be properly formed.
TOPPING Material hooped or placed on top of materials with a definable nap or surface texture, such as corduroy or terry cloth, prior to embroidery. It creates a smooth surface so that the stitching can be laid down. Most facings are made of a water-soluble plastic. Also called facing.
TUBULAR FRAMING The framing system on an embroidery machine that allows tubular goods to be hooped and attached to the machine.
TUBULAR GOODS Usually refers to finished goods such as sweatshirts and Tees. These goods, in order to be embroidered, need to around the sewing arm like a tube as not to sew the back of the garment to the front.

UNDERLAY STITCH Stitches in a design that are put down before the design stitches, used to stabilize the fabric or raise the design so that the fine detailing is not lost.

Under Thread Stop Motion. Sensor that determines if the bobbin thread is broken by detecting if the top thread stops flowing.


Refers to side to side movement of the pantograph on the machine.

WALK STITCH See "Running Stitch."

ZIGZAG STITCH Stitches that go from one side of an area to be sewn, diagonally to the other side. Diagonals may be placed closely together to form a satin stitch.

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