Have you heard of the Hatch Smash?
If you have not, read on. It is worth taking a few minutes to check it out!
PROBLEM: someone asks you to do embroidery on a very thick and furry blanket. You look at the blanket and try to figure out how to make sure the embroidery looks great on this blanket. You do a test stitch, and even if you put WSS on the top of the embroidery, the fur keeps popping up – through letters, in between words, and makes the design look well, fuzzy? How do I fix this?
SOLUTION: HATCH SMASH TECHNIQUE.
This is a great technique to learn, and it is fast and easy and your embroidery will look better than it ever has on any fabric that has a high nap – towels, blankets, fleece and yes, even fake fur! HATCH SMASH is quick and easy to do, and once you use the technique once, you will wonder how you ever functioned without it!
Here is the basis of using the HATCH SMASH technique: you want a layer of stitches to stitch first and provide a base for the actual embroidery design, but we don’t want it to stand out, and we don’t want it to look like part of the design. HATCH SMASH does all of that and more – this simple and effective technique provides a nice base to your embroidery, holding down all the fibers and nap of the material, making your actual embroidery design sharp and clear when you stitch it out. If you match the HATCH SMASH stitches to the fabric, your eye will be drawn to the embroidery, not the Hatch Smash stitches! You will be surprised and how great it looks!
I have done a quick video to show you how to do the technique (link at the bottom of the post) but here is how to do it in Hatch. But first, an example of what HATCH SMASH looks like on a furry baby blanket
As you can see by the picture above, you can clearly see the lettering and the embroidery design, on a very thick furry blanket – doesn’t the writing look clear? the HATCH SMASH technique takes care of the fur, and keeps it in place so your embroidery is sharp and clear. In the example picture, I used a simple tatami anchor and a TTF font to create the writing – nothing special or fancy, just simple. And simple works on this blanket!
I created the design, and once I was happy with the lettering and the anchor, I then applied the Hatch Smash technique! There are a few steps to the technique, but instead of clicking one button and it’s done, you have much more creative control, and you can adjust the technique to work with ANY thick fabric like this – I do prefer to be able to change things (like density in this case) to make it work. If you had the density set too light the thick fur would come through – and if you had it too dense, then you would have some fancy bullet-proof embroidery.
To use this technique, select all of the embroidery and create an offset. That gives the nice shape around the design that ebbs and flows with the lettering and the design. Once you have your offset with the spacing that you like (you can create large or small offsets, depending on the look that you want and the fabric you are using) and then fill it with stitches. Now, if you leave it like this, it is going to be pretty thick! Now is a great time to play around with the density, but first take off the underlay – Yes, all of the underlay – and then go back to the density.
DENSITY is the space between the rows of stitches. If you DECREASE the number for the density, then you are increasing the density. If there is less space between the stitch rows, there are more stitches and the stitching has more density.
If you INCREASE the density number, you are adding space between the rows of stitches, and making the embroidery less dense.
For the HATCH SMASH technique, we want the stitches to be less dense than normal, so we are going to increase the density numbers. We want a light foundation for the embroidery, not a solid base. Once you do this the last thing to do is move the HATCH SMASH stitches in the resequence tab so they stitch out first. That’s it, you have completed HATCH SMASH from start to finish! Woohoo.
If you would like to see this technique in action, check out this short 8-minute video that will show you step by step!
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