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Fill Stitch

What it is

Fill Stitch Bear Fill stitch is used to fill big areas with a color.

Fill stitch detail

Methods

Ink/Stitch offers four methods to create fill stitches: Auto-Fill (this page), Contour Fill , Guided Fill and Legacy Fill (this page).

Auto-Fill

How to Create

To use Auto-Fill, create a closed path with a fill color. This algorithm works for complex shapes with or without holes.

Info: If you are having issues with fill areas run the “fill repair tool” on them. This will solve most of your issues very easily.

Set Start and End Point

Set start and end points for autofill objects with Visual commands.

Params

Run Extensions > Ink/Stitch > Params to tweak the settings to your needs.

Settings   Description
Automatically routed fill stitching Must be enabled for these settings to take effect.
Fill method AutoFill Must be set to auto fill for rows of stitches.
Expand Expand example Expand the shape before fill stitching, to compensate for gaps between shapes.
Angle of lines of stitches Angle example The angle of the rows of stitches, in degrees. 0 is horizontal, and the angle increases in a counter-clockwise direction. Negative angles are allowed.
Maximum fill stitch length Stitch length example The length of each stitch in a row. “Max” is because a shorter stitch may be used at the start or end of a row.
Spacing between rows Spacing example Distance between rows of stitches
Running stitch length Running stitch length example Length of stitches used when moving from section to section
Skip last stitch in each row Skip example The last stitch in each row is quite close to the first stitch in the next row. Skipping it decreases stitch count and density.
Stagger this many times before repeating Stagger example Stitches are staggered so that neighboring rows of stitches don’t all fall in the same column (which would create a distracting valley effect). Setting this dictates the length of the cycle by which successive stitch rows are staggered. Fractional values are allowed and can have less visible diagonals than integer values.
Underpath Unterpath example Must be enabled to let running stitches travel inside shape instead of around the border when moving from section to section
Allow lock stitches   Enables lock stitches in only desired positions
Force lock stitches Sew lock stitches after sewing this element, even if the distance to the next object is shorter than defined by the collapse length value in the Ink/Stitch preferences.
Trim After Trim the thread after sewing this object.
Stop After Stop the machine after sewing this object. Before stopping it will jump to the stop position (frame out) if defined.

Underlay

If stitch one layer of stitches as a fill individual stitches tend to sink into the fabric (even if it’s thin) and the fill will appear sparse. The fabric may even stick up between rows.

To solve this, you need underlay. This is an initial layer of stitches that hold up the final stitches. Underlay for fill stitch usually comprises of fill stitching 90 degrees offset from the final fill (called “top stitching”). The row spacing should be much wider than in the top stitching. The goal is to flatten out the fabric and give the top stitches “rails” to sit on.

Underlay is enabled in Ink/Stitch by default. In some rare cases (e.g. a fill layer with big row spacing) you will want to disable it. Uncheck the checkbox “Underlay” in the AutoFill Underlay tab in your params dialogue window. Other cases will require multiple underlay. To enable, enter a space separated list of fill angles and it will result into multiple underlay layers.

Settings Description
Underlay Must be enabled for these settings to take effect.
Fill angle Defaults to 90 degrees angle to the top layer. It’s the best value for most cases. But sometimes you might want to change your underlay directions. It is also possible to enter a comma separated list to receive multiple underlays.
Inset Inset to cover the underlay entirely by the top layer. Negative values are possible (usefull for “knockdown” stitches).
Max stitch length Maximum stitch length. Stitches can be shortened at the start or the end of a row.
Row spacing Underlay row spacing. Defaults to 3x the spacing of the top layer.
Skip last stitch in each row The last stitch in each row is quite close to the first stitch in the next row. Skipping it decreases stitch count and density.
Underpath Must be enabled to let running stitches travel inside shape instead of around the border when moving from section to section

Samples Files Including Fill Stitches

Applique

Applique example file

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Color Blending

Color Blending Methods

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Free Standing Lace - Butterfly

Free Standing Lace - Butterfly

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Fringe

Fringe example file

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Ink/Stitch Logo & Branding Guide

Ink/Stitch logo as SVG file, digitized version and branding guide.

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Legacy Fill

Legacy Fill is the old manual mode before automatic fill routing was implemented.

In legacy fill, the extension will still break up the shape into sections, each of which can be embroidered in one go. Then these sections will be fill-stitched one at a time, jumping directly between sections.

You’ll almost certainly want to break your shape up into smaller shapes and connect them using running stitches. It’s a painstaking process, made more so because you’ll need to do it twice: once for the underlay and again for the top stitching.

Run Extensions > Ink/Stitch > Params to alter stitch details.

Settings Description
Manually routed fill stitching Must be enabled for these settings to take effect.
Fill method Must be set to legacy fill
Angle of lines of stitches The angle of the rows of stitches, in degrees. 0 is horizontal, and the angle increases in a counter-clockwise direction. Negative angles are allowed.
Maximum fill stitch length The length of each stitch in a row. “Max” is because a shorter stitch may be used at the start or end of a row.
Spacing between rows Distance between rows of stitches.
Skip last stitch in each row The last stitch in each row is quite close to the first stitch in the next row.
Stagger row this many times before repeating Stitches are staggered so that neighboring rows of stitches don’t all fall in the same column (which would create a distracting valley effect). Setting this dictates how many rows apart the stitches will be before they fall in the same column position.
Flip fill The flip option can help you with routing your stitch path. When you enable flip, stitching goes from right-to-left instead of left-to-right. Using flip and rotating 180 additional degrees (by adding or subtracting 180 from angle), you can cause fill stitching for a given shape to start from any of the four possible corners.
Force lock stitches Sew lock stitches after sewing this element, even if the distance to the next object is shorter than defined by the collapse length value in the Ink/Stitch preferences.
Allow lock stitches Enables lock stitches in only desired positions