Embroidery designs are created in many different brands of embroidery programs like Brother, Husqvarna, Artista, Pfaff etc. When designs are converted from one format to another, the thread colors used in one format are often not compatible with the thread colors another format uses. When this happens, the colors shown in your embroidery design may look rather unusual and not like the original image of the design displayed on the website. Don't worry, this is normal and there are many different ways you can make it look correct.
Color charts are often included with your designs.
When you order designs from the Internet, you will generally receive a color chart to use with your designs which gives you a guide of the thread colors to use. You should follow this color chart, rather then the color sequence of your embroidery design file.
Sometimes the color charts are brand specific and refer to a particular brand of embroidery thread the designer used. You may use a different embroidery thread. If so, you will need a thread conversion chart. There is a list of different thread conversion charts available further down this page.
Many of the latest color charts include a list of the color names, or picture of colored squares as the guideline, instead of the brand of thread. This makes it easier for you to choose the matching color from your own thread collection.
Finding the color chart included with your designs.
The color chart should be included inside the zipped file downloaded with your embroidery designs. Some embroidery programs can't read the color charts, so you have to ensure you are viewing the contents of the zipped file outside of your embroidery program.
Color charts come as different file types.
The last 3 letters of the file name like .txt indicate the file extension and determine what type of file it is and the program you need to view the file with.
.TXT This can be read on any computer and even some embroidery programs. It is a very basic text file with only text information.
.PDF This can be read on any computer, but you must have downloaded the free Adobe Acrobat Reader program to view it with. This file can include different pictures etc.
.DOC This is to be read with Microsoft Word. If you don't have Microsoft Word, you will need to ask the designer to provide the information in a different format for you.
.JPG This is an image file that you need to view in an image program or windows picture viewer available on any computer.
Use your embroidery software to work out the colors for your design.
If you can't find the color chart with your embroidery designs, don't worry - you can easily work out what colors to use with your designs. Every embroidery program should give you the options and tools to enable you to change the colors of your design to the ones you want to use.
We have a great mini tutorial available by Carolyn Keber that shows you how to change colors using Embird. This great conversion program enables you to make many changes to your designs before you sew them out. If you don't have Embird, we highly recommend you download the free trial and give it a go.