Answered By: MRU Library
Last Updated: Aug 26, 2021     Views: 981

Designing a digital embroidery file using PE-Design 10

As you create your design be sure to save as you go. To save click on the icon.

The following instructions are the basic steps to creating a digital embroidery file. PE-Design 10 has many more options and features than what is mentioned in this tutorial.

Open PE-Design 10

Double-click on the PE-Design 10 icon to open the software.

Design Settings

It is important to set up your design settings before starting your design to be sure everything will be accurately scaled.

Click on the purple flower in the top left corner.  
Choose “Design Settings”.
Make sure the embroidery machine radial is selected. 

Under “Page Size”, choose the correct size for the hoop you will be using. 

As a note, though you will choose the measurements for the size of the hoop, you also have to account for the sewing field. The machine cannot sew very close to the edge of the internal hoop, the maximum area it can embroider is smaller than the hoop size itself, so your design must fit in the sewing field for your hoop. For example a hoop which is 4 x 4 inches has a sewing field of 3.93 x 3.93 inches, so your design cannot exceed 3.93 x 3.93. Here is a list of common hoop sizes with their sewing fields:

Hoop Size in inches

Sewing Field in inches


3.93 x 3.93 


5.12 x 7.09 


6.30 x 10.24 


7.9 x 11.75 


7.9 x 7.9

9 x 12

9.1 x 11.8

9.5 x 14

9.4 x 14.17

If your design is bigger than the sewing field of the hoop, you must either choose a larger hoop or scale down your design. You can see the size of your design by clicking your design and looking at the bottom left of the window.

You can choose to rotate your design page by 90 degrees if your design is landscape.

When you are finished editing your design settings click the “OK” button*.

*If you make no changes the “OK” button will be greyed out and not allow you to select it. Click “default” and then choose your hoop size.

Using the Wizard

After importing your image you will need to turn it into an embroidery file. The quickest way to do this is by using the Wizard. 

If you prefer more control over the final result, you can use your imported image as a template to aid in the design of your embroidery file. This takes more time, but can produce a better result. To learn how to do this skip ahead to Using the editing tools in Pe-Design 10.

  • Start the Wizard by clicking on the white “Wizard” icon or clicking on the purple flower icon in the top left corner and then choosing Wizard.
  • How do you want to produce embroidery?
    • Choose “Create Embroidery Patterns Using Images”,
  • Select Stitch Method for Image
    • Choose the method you would like. There are descriptions and a preview to help you make your decision. “Auto Punch” is most commonly used.
    • Click NEXT
  • Select Mask
    • A mask will create a boundary line for your image. Select the mask you would like to use.
    • To modify the mask to outline your image click on the second arrow and click and drag the white square anchors.
    • If you don’t wish to use a mask select nothing.
    • Click NEXT
  • Check Mask Shape/Modify Image
    • Here you can confirm your modifications so far.
  • Auto Punch Parameters
    • This is where you will adjust the noise reduction, segmentation sensitivity, the number of colours, the thread chart and well as omitting colour regions. These settings will depend on your image. Try different variations of the settings to see what works best for you. You must click on the “Retry” button to make the changes take effect.

The gridded areas are where there will be no stitching. You can change this by clicking on the area you would like stitching added.

If your design doesn’t look perfect don’t worry, there is usually some editing required after using the wizard. 

When you are satisfied with your image click “Finish”.

This is a good place to save your design. To save click on the icon.

Using the editing tools in Pe-Design 10

In this section we will be learning to use the editing tools. You can use these tools to modify a design you have imported, a design you have created using the Wizard*, or to start a design from scratch.

Check out the appendix to learn the names of areas in the interface.

*If you have used the Wizard you must ungroup your design. You can do this by right clicking on your design and choosing “ungroup”.


To zoom in or out you can select the magnifying glass icons located in the Ribbon.

To pan you can use the bar slider at the bottom and side of the design area.

Making Shapes

To draw a shape:
 Select Home>Shapes and choose a tool. You can then click and drag in the work area to create your design. To stop drawing you must double click. To undo a step click on “undo”.

Once a design is created the Ribbon will display editing options. You can change the thread colour and type of stitch for the outline as well as the fill. 

Editing your Design

You can edit or delete parts of your design by either clicking the part in the sewing order pane or in the work area.

Once you have selected the area you would like to edit you can edit the design directly with the selection tools. You can access the tools by clicking on the select tool arrow and a drop down will appear with the following options:

The Select tool  
This tool is used for moving or scaling the selected design.

The Select Points tool 
This tool will create anchor points (they look like small white squares) on your design which you can click and drag to modify your design. Clicking on an anchor point will create “handles” which will allow you to modify the curve of the stitch the anchor is on. You can do this by clicking a dragging a handle.

You can add anchor points by clicking on the stitch, and you can delete them by selecting an anchor and then hitting the Delete key on your keyboard.

Clicking on the The Select Points tool will also create a red arrow which will allow you to change the direction of your stitches by clicking and dragging the square or triangle of the arrow.

You will notice that once you create a shape the steps appear in the sewing order pane. 

You can change the order of the steps by clicking and dragging each step in the sewing order pane. 

Changing stitch type

Once you have a shape (whether you’ve used the wizard or drawn it yourself) you can change the type of stitches and the colour of the thread by selecting your shape, going under the shapes tab and selecting the type of stitch and colour you would like. The upper selection is for the outline of your shape and the lower is for the fill. Clicking on the thread icon will allow you to change the colour of thread.

The different types of stitches affect how your design will look. Satin stitch will be fuller than a fill stitch. You can preview your design by selecting the view tab and under the view mode choose Realistic.

Modify Overlap

If you have overlapping shapes it might become difficult for the needle in the embroidery machine to get through multiple layers. To help with this you can select the shapes which overlap and go to the Home tab and under Edit select Modify Overlap. Here you have options to remove the overlap or merge the shapes.

Adding Text

To add text to your design select the Home tab and under tools select text.

Choose the kind of text you would like to use: text, small text or monogram.

A text tab will open up with options you can use to design your text.

Here you can choose a font, size and stitch type.

When you have made your selection, click on the Design Page and a Text Attributes window will open.

Start typing your text. As you type your text will appear in the Text Attributes window.
The text attributes window will allow you to modify your text further. You can change the alignment, the kerning, have your text follow a path and more. 

When you have text selected a Text tab will appear in the ribbon. You can use these options to change your font, edit your stitches and convert the text to either blocks, stitches or outline. Remember you can always click on the “undo”  icon if you make an error.

Using the Import window

You can import designs from the software by using the Import window. If you don’t see the Import window you can bring it up by clicking on the Home tab>import and then choose the category you would like to import.


In the Import window under the import tab you will see two drop-down menus. 

You can look through these libraries / categories to choose a design to import. To import a design, click and drag it from the Import window to the design page. 

When you import an image a Stitches tab will appear at the top of the page. You can use these options to modify the image.

To import text from the Import window choose “Text” from the “From” drop-down menu and go through the “Category” drop-down menu for options. When you click and drag a text design on to the design page the Text Attributes window will appear. This will be where you change the word “text” to the text you choose and how you can edit your text further.

Saving and Exporting

You can save your design by clicking on the purple flower and selecting “save” or To save click on the icon. This will automatically save your file in pes format. 

To send your file directly to a USB stick (you will have to use a USB stick to transfer your file to the embroidery machines) you can click on the “Send” icon and then choose “Send to USB Media”. Choose the port with the USB stick inserted.



Learning the Interface

  1. Application button 
    Click to display a menu containing commands for file operations, such as [New], [Save], [Print] and [Design Settings]. 
  2. Ribbon 
    These tabs contain various commands for performing operations with the selected tool or embroidery pattern e.g. Home>Shapes>Rectangle tool.
  3. Quick Access Toolbar (also found under the Ribbon)
    This contains the most frequently used commands. This toolbar can be edited to contain tools most frequently used.
  4. Help button 
    Click this button to display the Instruction Manual and view information about the software. 
  5. Sewing Order pane 
    This pane shows the sewing order that the embroidery machine will use to make your design. Click the buttons at the top of the pane to change the sewing order or thread color. 
  6. Import/Color/Sewing Attributes/Text Attributes panes 
    This pane combines tabs for importing embroidery patterns as well as for specifying thread colors, sewing attributes and text attributes.
  7. Stitch Simulator pane 
    The Stitch Simulator shows how the pattern will be sewn by the machine and how the stitching will appear. 
  8. Design Page 
    The work area that can be saved and sewn.
  9. Work area 
  10. Status Bar 
    This displays the size of the embroidery data, the number of stitches or a description of the selected command.
  11. View mode buttons 
    Click a button to change the View mode. 
  12. Show grid button Click to switch between displaying and hiding the grid.
  13. Design Property button 
    Click to display a dialog box containing sewing information for the embroidery data.
  14. Zoom slider 
    This displays the current magnification ratio. Click to specify a value for the magnification ratio. Drag the slider to change the magnification ratio.

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