I saw a free font that someone started today on Facebook, and I realized it was probably digitized using a motif. At first glance, it appears fairly simple.
- Find a font you want to use. I’m using Jellee Roman, a font with an open font license (OFL), available here: Jellee Roman. (An open font license allows me to use the font any way I choose without violating copyright.)
- Click the Insert Text tool (or press Ctrl-T).
- In the dialog box, type the text you want (in this case a single letter), choose your font (Jellee Roman) and size (90) and click OK. This turned out to be a bit tricky at first because I didn’t understand what was happening. The text you are inserting needs to be highlighted in order for the font and size to apply to it. I was annoyed about this until I realized that I can insert text where each letter is a different font and size if I want, and do it in one step. Extra points to Generations for this feature.
- In the Stitch Sequence, click the letter. (If you click the letter on the screen, the Insert Text box comes back up.)
- If you need to reshape the letter, this is the best time to do it.
- Press the space bar to bring up the Stitch Properties.
- Change the Stitch Type to Motif and click Use Border.
- On the Motif tab, choose one or two motifs and adjust your size and spacing. Using the Preview box and the Apply button (which applies your changes but doesn’t close the dialog box) will make the process more efficient.
- When you have the settings the way you want them, save them if you are doing more than one object. You can load them (don’t forget to Apply after you load — pressing OK won’t apply loaded settings for some reason) for each subsequent object and you won’t have to redo them every time.
The blue C is what I ended up with the first time. It’s not bad, but it’s not ideal. The leaves are more prominent than the flowers. I reversed the settings so the leaf was motif A and the flower was motif B and liked the result better. I wish I could adjust the placements of the motifs, but I don’t see a way to do that.
Here are the settings I used the first time. I reversed these for the second C. Motif no36 (the flower) wants to use direction 6. When I changed this, I ended up with jump stitches all over the place. Not a good thing. However, motif no31 wanted to use direction 90, which gives horizontal stems. Changing the direction to 0 didn’t add jump stitches.
This was great, but what if I wanted pink flowers and green leaves? I don’t see any way to set the color of the motif. The design stitches row by row, so I could potentially divide the stitches, but I wanted to try a different method.
- Create two copies of the letter.
- Apply each motif to the letters separately, with a row space of 22, and a border on only one of them.
- Superimpose the letters.
This didn’t work as well as I had hoped. As you can see, the motifs are in the same spot on both letters.
Next I tried a complicated procedure involving masks, but that didn’t work either. After some experimentation, I determined that the motifs would move if the letter was made taller on the top. I used Adjust with a Curve to add a bump to the blue C (because I wanted the flowers to move up). Then I generated the design to make the motifs move.
I’ve added a guideline so you can see that I almost have everything lined up correctly, but the flowers still need to go up a bit. A few adjustments later, and this is the result. There’s a tiny overlap between the flower and the stem, but because of the border and the space between rows, I was able to nudge the flowers up just a tiny bit without causing an issue.
I should also note that I made the border a separate object at this point and turned off the border on the motifs.
Now to get rid of the bump.
- In the Stitch Sequence, click the eye to make the green C and the border invisible. (This isn’t required if the green items aren’t getting in your way.
- Select the blue C.
- Select View Stitch and Edit Mode (the hand).
- Drag a rectangle around all the unnecessary stitches and press Delete. You can go down into the body of the letter as far as you want as long as you don’t touch the next row of flowers.
- Make the other pieces visible again and click Generate. Deleting the stitches doesn’t change the area outline, so the motifs don’t move.
Note: On this letter, deleting the stitches left a line across the top of the C. However, the line didn’t show up when I exported the file as an embroidery file.
I used Rainbow variegated thread from Superior Threads for the blossoms. I believe this brand is being discontinued and may still be on closeout. (Rainbow is the brand, not the color.)
Note: The leaf motif goes over the bottom part of the motif twice. This is the way it was designed in Generations, not something I did. If I decide to spend more time on this, I’ll create a new motif that doesn’t have the heavier bottom leaves.
Design Size: 3.11″ by 3.68″
Stitch Count: 8479
Here’s a link to a zip file containing the C (monochrome and multicolor) in pes format. Drop me a note if you need other formats and I’ll see what I can do. You are welcome to use these file to make objects for personal use or for sale. You may not resell or distribute the embroidery file. I strongly suggest you do a test stitchout first. Flower Font C
Dropbox may ask you to create an account or sign in, but there’s a ‘no thanks’ link that will let you proceed to the download.
If there’s any interest in this font, I’ll do the rest of the letters and add them to this post. Leave me a comment if you want me to continue.