How To's for Creative DRAWings®

What do you want to do? There are many locations on the Creative DRAWings® website that have information about How To work with your Creative DRAWings® embroidery software. In the FAQ’s below, find quick, straight forward answers to many of your questions. Please "Click" on each question to show-and-hide that individual answer.



Q1. Where are the 3,000 free embroidery designs that come with Creative DRAWings®? I can’t find them on my computer.

The embroidery stitch files that are included with Creative DRAWings® are located on your installation disk. Because of the amount of space they require, they were not installed on your computer. To access the embroidery designs and use them in Creative DRAWings®:


  1. Place the installation disc in your computer CD player. When the installation notice appears, click on Cancel, leave the CD in the drive and follow the directions.
  2. Open Creative DRAWings®, and select Open Existing. Click Next at the bottom of the page. On the next page, select From embroidery on the Artwork source page.
  3. Click on the browser button to the right, and go to the Look in line at the top of the page. Click to access the dropdown menu and locate the drive containing the Creative DRAWings® CD; click to open it.
  4. When the list of files appears on your computer screen, click on Designs. A ist of embroidery design categories will appear. Click on the desired category to access the available embroidery designs. At the bottom of the screen you will see a Preview window showing the design that is highlighted in the list. As you move down the list, the Preview will show the currently selected file. Open the desired file as you would any other graphic to bring it into Creative DRAWings®.

Note: These files are Wings Systems’ files, as designated with the .ngs extension at the end of the file name. They include the fill and outline stitches so it is not necessary to use the Convert to curves command that is necessary when converting embroidery files to Artwork.

Q2. Can I open my old embroidery files in Creative DRAWings® to rework them (change the size, fill and/or outline patterns, or colors)?

Yes, this is one of the great features of Creative DRAWings®. Here’s how it works:

  1. Open Creative DRAWings® and click on Create New and Next at the bottom of the page.
  2. On the Artwork source page (the second wizard page), choose From embroidery, and then click on the browser button (3 dots at the right end of the line).A page will open with embroidery stitch files that were included with your installation. If you want to open one of your own stitch files, use the dropdown arrow in the top line that says Look in to find the folder where you saved your embroidery designs. Click on the one you want and open it.


With the file open you can adjust it for as many of the following possible changes to create a new embroidery design:

  • Change colors
  • Add lettering using the Fonts installed on your computer
  • Duplicate the design to create a new one with two or more of the same image
  • Skew the design to change its shape
  • Rotate the design
  • Combine the design with other designs
  • Edit with the Node edit tool or use fill stitches, only after using the Convert to curves function. Convert to curves changes the stitch file to a vector graphic, enabling you to change the design in any way you want.

To use Convert to Curves:

  1. Click on the Rectangle Selection tool at the top of the left toolbar and then choose one of the following 3 commands depending on how much or how little of the design you wish to change.
    a. To convert the entire design to curves, click on Ctrl+A.
    b. To convert only one object (area) of the design to curves, click on the area to select it.
    c. To convert two or more areas to curves, select one area and while holding down the Shift key, select the other desired areas of the stitch file.

  2. After selecting the area(s) Right click to access the dropdown menu and then Left click on Convert to curves.
  3. Be sure to do a file Save As with a new name so you don’t lose your original stitch file.

Note: Converting may take only a few seconds or much longer, depending on the complexity of the stitch file is. Wait until the Circle Timer (the small moving circle of dots) in the upper right corner of the workspace has stopped before you continue working. For example, if your original file is Cats, save the new file as Cats2 or other name of your choice followed by the date if you wish (Cats2_10.09.97). Use a name that will work for you and your filing system.

WARNING: Once you change an embroidery design with the Convert to curves command, all of the original stitch information will be gone and you cannot retrieve it, but you can completely change the stitches at this point and resave as a new design. However, it’s important to remember that if you are working with embroidery designs that you have purchased, the original copyright for that design still applies.

Q3. Can I scan a design and change it to an embroidery file?

Yes you can.

  1. Open Creative DRAWings and click on Create New and then Next at the bottom of the page.
  2. Click on Get Image from Scanner. A built-in scanning wizard will guide you through the process.

Note: If you want to use your own scanning software instead of what’s built into Creative DRAWings, click on Advanced Scan in the lower right-hand corner. To access the step-by-step guide in the built-in help files under Quick Start, click on Help on the top tool bar. Click Help Topics or use the F1 key. Under the Content tab, right click on Creative DRAWings. Left click on Open All.  You will see the chapter on Quick Start under Welcome to Creative DRAWings.

Q4. Can I draw my own designs with Creative DRAWings® and turn them into embroidery designs?

Yes! Here’s how:

  1. Open Creative DRAWings
  2. Select Create New>Next.
  3. On the Artwork Source page, select New Graphic>Next.
  4. Select the type of fabric you will be using and click on Finish.
  5. Select one of the drawing tools (Freehand and two Beziertools) or the Polygon (pre-made shapes such as circle and star in the fly-out menu on the polygon icon) on the left toolbar to create original shapes and/or copy and paste other graphics on the workspace to create your own designs. Here’s where your creativity comes in. You can add text, combine just parts of other designs, change colors, size and shape, all with the powerful tools in Creative DRAWings.

Q5. I successfully resize an embroidery design I’ve created in Creative DRAWings® without affecting the quality of the stitchout?

Yes, it’s easy to change the size of any embroidery design and when you do this Creative DRAWings automatically recalculates all of the stitch parameters (stitch length, pull compensation, density and stitch underlays).


  1. Select the entire design using Ctrl+A.  
  2. Hold down the Ctrl key on the keyboard and use the Rectangle Selection Tool (first icon on the left tool bar) to move the arrow over a corner of the design until it changes to a Double Arrow. Use the double arrow to pull the box corner down on a diagonal to enlarge it or move it slowly up on a diagonal to make the design smaller. Wait until the Circle Timer in the upper right-hand corner of the workspace stops before you make any additional adjustments. Holding down the Control key keeps the design in the same size ratio (length and width) as it was when you started.

Note: To change only one dimension—length or width—locate the double arrow in the center of the line at the top or bottom of the design to lengthen or shorten it. Use the double arrows on one of the sides of the design to narrow or widen it.


If you watch the bottom information bar below the color bars at the bottom of the workspace, you can watch the stitch count increase or decrease

Note: If you select only one object (area) of the design to adjust, only the stitch count for that one object will show in the information bar as you adjust the size.

Q6. How do I change colors in my embroidery design?

  1. Select the Create tab at the upper left corner of the workspace.
  2. Select the object you want to change and then choose the desired color from the Color Strip—the first row of colors at the bottom of the workspace. There may be additional colors in the palette that was selected and you can find them by clicking on the left and right arrows that appear at the opposite ends of the color strip.

Note: The colors in the color strip are the colors available in the thread palette that was active when you chose your fabric during the Creative DRAWings process—unless you opted to change palette using the pulldown list on that page.

Q7. My embroidery design is finished but I want to change the thread palette in the design. How do I do that?

Click on the Color Wheel on the top tool bar. On the next page, titled "Select how many colors your design will have," click on the dropdown arrow under Palette and then click on the thread brand you want to use. Click on OK. If you change your mind, click Cancel.


Q8. My Objects Toolbar is missing (or disappeared somehow). How do I find and replace it?

Select View from the top menu bar to access the dropdown menu and click on Object Properties, or use the keyboard shortcut,Alt+Enter.

Q9. Can I make an embroidery design from a digital photograph using Creative DRAWings®?

Yes you can.

  1. You can convert the digital photo to a perfect cross-stitch design automatically
  2. You can Trace the digital photo that will automatically be filled with normal stitches (Runnings, steps, Satins etc.)

Creative DRAWings was not intended to be used as photo stitch program. However, you may be able to create a design with a photo, but it depends on the complexity of the photo. The best way to see if it will work with your photo is:


  1. Reduce the number of colors and enlarge the photo with an image editing software on your computer.
  2. Use Creative DRAWings to change the adjusted photo to -type program. If you do produce a design, you may have to edit and change stitch types such as Satin and Fill. Experiment. If the photo is too complex, CreativeDRAWings may freeze or you may see a “Not Responding” message when you use Task Manager.

Q10. Is there an Online help inside Creative DRAWings®?

Yes. Locate it by clicking on Help on the top tool bar, then choose Help Topics or use the F1 key. Under the Content tab, right click on Creative DRAWings. Left click on Open All to see the contents of the manual.


Note: You can also click on the Index tab and type in the word that describes the help subject you want to locate. This will bring the subject you have chosen in the list into view.


For quick help on a specific tool on the toolbar, click on the question mark with arrow icon on the top toolbar. Your cursor will change to look like the icon. Move the cursor with question mark to the tool for which you want more information and a help screen will appear in the upper right corner. For example, if you need help with Fonts, click on the Text icon (A) at the bottom of the left toolbar and the manual will open automatically to show you how to use Fonts. You can use this Help technique on all of the toolbar icons. If you have the Help icon selected, you can also click on File, Edit, View, Tools and Help at the top of the screen and dropdown menus will appear. Then click on the topic with which you need help. This is a quick way to get help while you’re working.

Q11. Can I print out the PDF manual that comes with the Software?

Yes. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader. If it is not installed on your computer, go to http://get.adobe.com/reader/ to download the software. Then follow these steps:


  1. Go to Start>Programs on your computer.
  2. Locate and click on Creative DRAWings in the list. A menu will open alongside it.
  3. Click on PDF file Creative DRAWings manual on the menu which will open the PDF file on your computer
  4. Click on File>Print after making sure your printer is loaded with paper.

Note: If you want to save the manual to a disk, USB stick or CD to take to a printer or to keep as a backup, click File>Save and save to the desired location.

Q12. How do I make my Text (lettering made with fonts) follow a line or shape (Text on Path)?

Combining a Text object with the direction or shape of a line called a Path is fun and easy to do. It’s a great way to create a logo or a personalized design. Follow these easy steps:


  1. Open Creative DRAWings and select New Design>Next. On the Artwork source page, select New graphic>Next. Select the fabric and color on the next page and click on Finish.
  2. Draw a line with your choice of one of the drawing tools from the left toolbar.
  3. Choose the Text tool (A) and type the desired text; adjust it as desired for the size, font and style (bold or italics) using the text tools at the top of the screen.
  4. Use the Rectangle icon at the top of the left toolbar to Select and highlight the Text you’ve typed. With the text still selected, hold down the Shift key and click on the line you drew so they are both selected. Release the Shift key, right click within the selected area, and then click on Apply Path from the pop-out menu that appears.

Note: The Text object will now follow the line or shape, but it may not be positioned exactly where and how you want it on the Path. For complete instructions on how to use the Text Tool and adjust the position on the Path click on the Help Icon (arrow with question mark) on the top toolbar, and then click on the Text icon (A on the left toolbar).

Q13. What is the purpose of the Insert Symbol function and how do I use it?

Wingdings or Webdings are symbols (interesting shapes) that were made as True-Type Fonts. That means you can insert them on the workspace and transform them into interesting embroidery designs. You can use any Wingding font that is in the Fonts folder on your computer. To use Insert Symbol:


  1. Open Creative DRAWings and select New design>Next. On the Arwork source page, choose New Graphic>Next and then choose the fabric and colors and Finish.
  2. Go to Tools>Insert Symbol (or use short-cut of Ctrl+F11). A pop-out menu will appear. Select Insert Symbol.
  3. Click on the down arrow on the Font line to see the list of those Wingdings that are in your Fonts folder. Each computer will be different depending on the programs and fonts that have been installed. Wingdings can be added to your Fonts folder just like you add any other Font files to your computer (see your user’s manual).
  4. Use the scroll bar on the right side of the Insert Symbol menu to see the symbols included with the Wingding font you have selected. Click on the Wingding Font you want to use, then click on Insert at the bottom left of the Wingding menu.
  5. The menu will temporarily disappear and your cursor will change to a cross. To insert the selected symbol in the workspace area click and drag with the mouse until it is the size you want. You can change the size of the design at any time. Release the mouse and the symbol will appear on the workspace with a default fill stitch and outline colors and the Insert Symbol dialog will be turned on again. Continue to add as many more symbols as you wish following the same steps.
  6. To close the Insert Symbol menu click on the Close icon (X) at the upper right of the Insert Symbol menu. You can also minimize it by clicking on the Hide icon (between the X and ? at the upper right of the menu). This will make the menu disappear, leaving the title bar floating on the workspace in case you want to access it again.

Q14. Why are there two rows of color boxes next o the fabric selection menu?

These are the available colors for fabric backgrounds. Choose the one that approximates the color of your project fabric so you can tell how your embroidery design will look when it is stitched out. Simply click on one to select the desired fabric color and it will appear on the workspace. You can change the fabric color any time while working on the design. Simply click on the Fabric icon (grid like icon to the left of the Color icon) on the top toolbar to access the colors.

Q15. The color I want to use for my design background is not shown. Can I make my own color backgrounds?

Yes. Follow these steps:

  1. After accessing the page with the color choices, Double click on any one of the color squares and a color palette will pop up.
  2. Position the cursor on the black cross in the colors, click on it and hold down the left mouse key. Drag the mouse around the color palette until you locate the color you want. Once you have located the color, use the arrow on the right to move up or down to adjust the shade as desired. Watch the color and shade change in the box below the color palette.
  3. When you are happy with your choice, click OK and the selected color will be added to your color background. Click OK to exit.

Q16. How do I select my hoop and place it on the workspace?

Working with the hoop on your workspace ensures that your finished design will fit when you are ready to stitch it out. To place the hoop on your workspace:

  1. Open Creative DRAWings and select Create new or Open existing>Next.
  2. On the Artwork Source page, locate the Hoop section and click on the drop-down arrow to see the hoop sizes available.
  3. Select and click on the desired hoop in the dropdown menu. It will appear on the workspace.
Note: You can add the hoop later from the workspace by clicking Tools>Change Hoop (or useCtrl+H)

Q17. How do I center my design in the hoop?

  1. Click on Tools>Change Hoop (or Ctrl+H).
  2. Click on Center design in hoop, and then OK.

Q18. How do I rotate my design 90°?

  1. Click on Tools>Change Hoop (or Ctrl+H).
  2. Click on Rotate by 90°, and then click OK.

Q19. How do I create custom hoop sizes?

First click on Tools>Change Hoop (or Ctrl+H) and then click on Add new. Then you will have several decisions to make.

Hoop Name-Description
Type the Hoop Name – Description. This will appear in the Select Hoop dropdown menu. If you forget to fill in this field, you will be asked to do so by the software.

Type
From the Type dropdown menu, select the shape of the hoop you want to add—Rectangle or Oval. You check how the hoop will look in the Preview area at the bottom of the screen. Even if you select the Rectangle option, the Corner curviness option will become editable, allowing you to round the corners of the hoop shape if you wish.

Corner curviness
Many hoops have the shape of a rectangle with rounded corners and that’s why the Corner curviness option exists. Corner curviness can only be changed if you have selected the Rectangle option from the Type dropdown menu. This option works with a track-bar and value field. By dragging the track-bar to the right, the corners of the rectangle shown in the Preview area start to become rounded and their roundness increases as long as you continue to drag the bar. The value field shows the percentage of roundness. The 0 value means that the rectangle has normal corners and the 90 value means that it has rounded corners to their full extent. By moving the track-bar you can create the rounded hoop you want.


Width
In the Width value field you can insert the width of the hoop you want to use. The default value is 100 mm or the respective value in inches. Change the value of the Width field by deleting the current value and inserting a new one. Any width value change is automatically visible in the Preview area. Check the manufacturer’s dimensions to be sure that you are entering the correct ones. The Width value sets the width of the sewing area that it is shown with a dashed line inside the hoop.


Height
In the Height value field you can insert the height of the hoop you want to use. The default value is 100 mm or the respective value in inches. Change the value of the Height field by deleting the current value and inserting a new one. Any Height value change is automatically visible in the Preview area at the bottom of the screen. Check the manufacturer’s dimensions to be sure that you are entering the correct ones. The Height value sets the height of the sewing area that is indicated with a dashed line inside the hoop.

Unit
From the Unit dropdown menu you can select the measuring unit you want to use--millimeters (mm) or inches (inch). The selected Unit is automatically applied on the Width and Height values.


Hoop Bracing arms
 At the Hoop bracing arms (brackets) area, you can set where the bracing arms are located on the hoop you are adding. To do that, check the boxes (Left, Right, Up, Down), where the bracing arms are located. For example, if the Hoop has one bracing arm at the Right and one at the Left, the Right and Left checkboxes must be checked. You can see the hoop with bracing units you’ve selected in the Preview area at the bottom of the screen.


After adjusting the hoop options, Save the hoop by pressing the Add button. This adds the new hoop to the Select hoop dropdown menu. After pressing the Add button a confirmation dialog will appear that will inform you that your hoop was saved successfully. Click OK to continue. Hoops that you add will always be listed at the bottom of the Select Hoop list.

Q20. How do I save a design to use with my embroidery machine?

When you are happy with your completed embroidery design and want to stitch it out:

  1. Select File>Save As and choose the folder where you want to save your designs.
  2. Name the design in the File name line at the bottom of the screen, replacing "Untitled".
  3. Click on the down arrow on the next line -- Save as type. The first file in the list is .draw—the file format for Creative DRAWings. It’s very important to save your design as a .draw file first so that you will be able to open it later to work on the design again. To open it again as a .draw file, click on Open Existing on the first wizard page in Creative DRAWings. If you don’t see the .draw file you want listed in the box below, click on Browse… and then go to the file where your .draw files were saved. By saving a design first as a .draw file, you will be able to open it and make changes without starting over.
  4. Repeat steps 1-3 but this time, select the file format for your machine and save the design in the desired folder with ready-to-stitch embroidery designs.
  5. 5. Load the saved design to your embroidery machine the way you usually do and do a test stitchout on a piece of fabric like the fabric you will use in your project

Q21. How do I make an appliqué design?

When you make an appliqué, Creative DRAWings® will automatically calculate the placement, tack-down, and final stitch runs for you. You can also add embroidery stitches on top of your completed appliqué for extra embellishment.


  1. Click to select the object (area of the design) that you want to make into an appliqué.
  2. With the object highlighted, go to the Objects Properties Toolbar on the right-hand side of the workspace and click on the Fill Bucket icon tab. Next click on the Appliqué icon on the top row and the "stitches" will change to look like fabric. To change the color of the fabric, select it from the first row of colors at the bottom of the workspace
  3. To select the type of stitch for the final stitch line that will outline the appliqué, click on the Outline Tab (pen icon) next to the Fill Bucket. If the tab won’t open, there is no outline yet. To add an outline:
    a. Select the object to whichyou want to add an outline.
    b. Hold down the Shift key on your keyboard while you click on the appliqué fabric color or change to a different color.
  4. The Outline Tab will now open. Select Running, and choose any Style stitch in the menu below that works with the size of your appliqué. The traditional appliqué or buttonhole stitch is the fourth one to the right of “None” on the top row.
  5. To make the stitch wider, select the appliqué. A toolbar will appear at the top of your workspace. If you don’t see it, click on View>Tool Options. At the Outline Thickness line, change the size of the stitch and then hit Enter on your keyboard.
  6. If you want a satin stitch around your appliqué, click on Satin Serial. To make the satin stitch wider, follow step 5 above.
  7. When you change the outline to the Satin Serial stitch, a menu of Patterns appears, instead of Styles. If you make the outline wide enough and then select a pattern, your outline will be a patterned stitch rather than a satin stitch. Play with options to discover the possibilities.

Q22. Can I make Redwork designs in Creative DRAWings

To change a design into Redwork, each object in the design must have an outline. To determine if they do, select the entire design using the command, Edit>Select All or Ctrl+A. With the entire design selected, check the lowest row of colors at the bottom of the workspace to see if there is a Bucket (fill) and Pen (outline) in each color of the design. If not, follow these steps to add outlines as needed:


  1. With the entire design still selected, hold down the Shift key and click in every color that doesn’t have a Pen in it. An outline will be added, and you will see the pen and bucket in the color box. If there are several areas with the same color, be sure to wait until the Circle Timer (upper right-hand corner of your workspace) stops. The timer is telling you that Creative DRAWings® is working and recalculating. Sending it another command while it is still completing one is not recommended.
  2. Once each object in the design is outline and with the design still selected, click on the X box to the left of your design colors in the bottom row of colors on the workspace to remove the fill stitches and leave only outlines.
  3. If you want to edit or change the shapes of any of the outlines, click on the Node Editing tool (second icon down on left-hand toolbar).
  4. To change outline colors, select the outline, hold down the Shift key, and then click on a different color.

Note: For a Redwork design with a few fill areas, select the areas you want filled, one by one and click on a color.

Q23. Can I use a design created in Creative DRAWings® for my scrapbooking?

Yes, using your designs can also be used to make stationery, invitations, envelopes, jar labels, and more. Let your imagination go and have fun! If you want your design to look like embroidery, make sure the View> Stitches and 3D are checked. If you uncheck both, your design will look like a graphic (artwork without stitches.)


  1. Create your design in Creative DRAWings® and when you are finished, go to File>Export>To Image and select the folder where you want to save your design.
  2. Name your design and at the Save as Type line, choose the file format you want to save it in. If you’re not sure which one to use, test each file type with your printer to see what looks best.
  3. Choose the dpi (dots per inch) for your printed design. A higher dpi (200-300) will usually give a printout of better quality. Each printer is different, so test the dpi if you’re not sure.
  4. If you want the background color you used to show when you print the design, click onInclude Fabric; leave it unchecked if you don’t want the background color to print.
  5. For smoother design edges, check Multisample.
  6. Click on Save.

Note: You can open the jpeg file from any program, including the paint program that comes in Windows. If you want to make stickers, print on peel-and-stick paper.

Q24. How do I transfer a design I’ve made in CorelDRAW® to Creative DRAWings®?

  1. Save your completed design as a .cmx file (Corel Presentation Graphic).
  2. Open Creative DRAWings® and on the Artwork Source page, select From File and click on the browser button to the right. Select your design from the folder it was saved to and click on Open.
  3. Select your fabric and thread and click on Finish.
  4. Your design will appear on the workspace ready for editing to change the color(s) and/or stitch patterns. Click on 100% on the top toolbar to make your workspace area 1:1 ratio.

OR

Use the shortcut commands.

  1. After drawing your design, select it with the shortcut command, Ctrl+A or use Edit>Select all. Go to Edit>Copy or use Ctrl+C.
  2. Open Creative DRAWings® and select New Graphic on the Artwork source page.
  3. Choose your fabric and click on Finish and click on 100% on the top toolbar to make your workspace area 1:1 ratio.
  4. Go to Edit>Paste or Ctrl+V to paste your design into Creative DRAWings® already converted to stitches. Change or edit the design as desired.

Note: You can continue to work back and forth between CorelDRAW and Creative DRAWings® in this manner.

Q25. How do I add an outline to an object in a Creative DRAWings® design?

You can do this in either of the following two ways:

  • Select the object (area) where you want to add the outline. Hold down the Shift key on your keyboard and then click on any color.
  • Select the object (area) where you want to add the outline. Tool options toolbar will appear above your workspace. Increase the outline size at Outline thickness and then hit Enter on your keyboard.

Q26. How to I delete an outline?

You can remove an outline with any one of the following three actions.

  • Select the object from which you wish to remove the outline. Hold down the Shift key on your keyboard and click on the X box at the left of the bottom row colors on the workspace—the colors that currently exist in the design. 
  • Select the object, click on the Pen tab on the right-hand toolbar and click on None.
  • Change the Outline thickness to 0.00 and hit Enter on your keyboard.

Q27. How do I change the color of an outline?

  1. Select the outline youwish to change.
  2. Hold down the Shift key on your keyboard and click on any color.

Note:  You can only change colors if you are in the Create tab.

Q28. How do I change an outline to a different stitch?

  1. Select the outline you wish to change.
  2. Click on the Pen tab on the right-hand toolbar.
  3. If you have chosen the Running stitch, click on any Style stitch in the menu below. You may need to experiment with this as the size of your embroidery design will determine how well the Style you choose fits on the outline.
  4. If you have chosen Satin Serial: First make the stitch wider using the Outline thickness that appears above the workspace and then apply one of the Pattern stitches. You may need to experiment with the stitch width for optimum results.

Q29. Can I use Creative DRAWings® to make a cross-stitch design?

can make a cross-stitch design using bitmap (raster) type files.

  1. After opening Creative DRAWings® select the bitmap you want to use on the Artwork Source page From file and click the browser button on the right. Go to the desired bitmap image (or jpeg) and click on Open.
  2. ClickNext on the Artwork Source page.
  3. Click on Open as Cross Stitch.

Q30. Is there a way to automatically reduce the number of thread changes while I’m making my design?

  1. Go to Tools>Optimizer options.
  2. Go down to the Minimize color changes slider bar.
  3. Click on the slider tab, hold down the mouse button and move it all the way to the left.
  4. Click on Save as Defaults and then on OK. You can change this setting at any time during the design process.

Q31. Can I use my design with T-Shirt Transfer paper?

Yes. If you want your design to look like embroidery, make sure the View> Stitches and 3D are checked. If you uncheck both, your design will look like a graphic instead of stitches.


  1. After completing the design, go to File>Export>To Image.
  2. Select the folder where you want to save your design and name your design.
  3. At the Save as Type line, choose the file format you want. If you’re not sure which one to use, test each file with your printer to see what looks best.
  4. Choose the dpi (dots per inch) for your printed design. A higher dpi (200-300) will usually give a better printout. Each printer is different so test if you’re not sure.
  5. If you want the background color you used to show when you print out the design, click on Include Fabric; leave it unchecked if you don’t.
  6. For smoother outer edges, check Multisample.
  7. Click on Save.

To print:

  1. Put T-shirt transfer paper in your printer following the manufacturer’s directions. (Some print with the paper face down, some face up.)
  2. Check the Print Preferences for your printer. Depending on your printer, there will be a setting for T-shirt transfer paper, or it will have a setting called “Mirror Image” where the portrait and landscape settings are. This is an important setting if you have used lettering with your design. If you don’t Mirror Image, the font will be printed out so that when you apply the transfer paper on your T-shirt, the lettering will come out backwards. Lettering must be printed in the reverse on the transfer paper to come out right reading on the T-shirt. If you don’t have settings on your printer to do this for you, just turn the lettering backwards on your design after you have typed it in.

Q32. How do I use a picture as a background to trace and draw my own design?

  1. Select your bitmap or jpeg From File on the second Artwork Source page.
  2. On the Artwork Image page, select Open as Backdrop.
  3. Select your fabric and background color and click Finish.
  4. If your workspace is blank, go to View>Backdrop>and click on:
    1. Below Embroidery or Alt+2 to place the image under the design you draw.
    2. Washed-out or Alt+3 for a lighter image.
    3. Above Embroidery or Alt+4 to place the image on top of the design. This option is good to use when you want to add details to your traced design.
    4. Hide or Alt+1 to hide the image so you can check on the design in progress or when it is finished.
    5. Properties menu (Backdrop Properties menu) allows you to straighten, rotate or resize the image using the following procedures.

  • To straighten or rotate: Click on the arrow under Rotate, hold down the mouse button, and move the design into the desired position. 
  • To make the image smaller or larger: Click on the slider tab under Scale, hold down the mouse button and move left or right to change increase or decrease the size as desired.
  • To create your design you can: Use the three drawing tools (Freehand, Bezier shape and Bezier outline tools available at the sixth icon down on the left-hand toolbar. You can also use the pre-made shapes available at the seventh icon down.

Note: If you use a basic pre-made shape but want to make changes to it, such as pull in the side of a circle to make a smile, you must first select the shape and then right click on it, followed by a left click to Convert to Curves. Use the Node Edit tool (second icon on the left-hand toolbar) to make the changes you want. You can also import other designs or parts of designs to add to what you are drawing.

Q33. How can I make changes to my design?

  1. Select the area you want to change, click on the Node Edit tool (the second one down on the left-hand toolbar). You will see circles and squares surrounding the area you want to change.
  2. Click and hold down the mouse button on selected nodes to move and change shapes. If you right click on a node, a pop-out menu will give you more choices for changing your design.
  3. If you don’t remember how to use each node, click on the icon that looks like an arrow with a question mark on the top toolbar. Next click on Node Edit tool and a Help menu will pop-up to explain how to use it.

Note: If you cannot change an object, right click on it, and then left click to Convert to Curves.

Q34. Can I change the direction of the stitches in my design?

Yes, you can change the direction of the stitches. Note: Moving the direction stitches sew out will completely change the look of whatever fill pattern you are using.

  1. Select the Direction icon on the left-hand toolbar—the red and blue compass pointer, which is the fourth icon down. 
  2. Click on the area you want to change the stitch direction. You will see a little red dot at the tip of the cursor arrow.
  3. Click and hold down the mouse button with the dot positioned on the edge of the design and pull it to the opposite side in the desired direction. You can change the direction again by moving the red dots around while holding down the mouse button. You can add as many direction lines as you need until your stitches are the way you want them to look.

To remove the red direction line, click on the red X in the center of the line, or use the Undo icon on the top toolbar.

Q35. How can I duplicate all or part of a design?

Choose from one of the following two options:

  1. Select the area to duplicate, or hold down the Shift key and select several objects to duplicate.
  2. Go to Edit>Copy, and then Edit>Paste or use the keyboard shortcuts, Ctrl+C and Ctrl+V.
  3. Put the cursor (arrow) on the copied design, click and hold down the mouse button and move the copy away from the original design to a different area of the workspace.

OR

Use the shortcut method, which takes a little practice but is actually faster when you’re working on a design.

  1. Select the area to duplicate, or hold down the Shift key and select several objects to duplicate.
  2. Put the cursor anywhere in the selected areas, and then hold down the left mouse button and drag the mouse to move the copy where you want it on the workspace, but don’t release the mouse button yet.
  3. While you’re still holding down the left mouse button, click the right mouse button with your middle finger. Release both mouse buttons.

Note: In Creative DRAWings®, Ctrl+D is the shortcut for the Direction tool and will not duplicate.

Q36. How do I change the measurement system in use in Creative DRAWings®—Imperial (inches) or to Metric measurements?

Go to Tools>Options. On the first General Tab change to the system you want to use under Measurement System.

Q37. How do I work with my Adobe Illustrator files?

You can use any version of Adobe Illustrator, but your design must be saved to Version 5 or lower.

  1. Create your graphic and save to a folder in Version 5 (or lower).
  2. Open Creative DRAWings®. > From the second Artwork Source wizard page, select From File.
  3. Go to the folder where you have saved your Illustrator design and continue through the remaining wizard pages until your design is in the main workspace.

The design can now be edited and changed as needed.

Q38. How do I use the ruler on the left toolbar?

Follow these three easy steps:

  1. Click on the ruler with the Rectangle Selection tool.
  2. Click on an edge of the object you want to measure, hold down the left mouse button, and move the tape measure that appears to the edge or part of the design that you want to measure.
  3. Make sure you have set the 1:1 ratio by going to Tools>Options>Monitor and click on the preset monitor size. Click OK to save.

Q39. How do I move my font along a circle or any other shape?

First, make a circle, and then select the font you want to use and type your text. Then follow these steps:

  1. Select both the circle and your text. Right click and select Apply Path.
  2. If the text is inside the circle and you want to change it, make sure the text is still selected and click on the Font icon (A) again. Another toolbar will appear right above your workspace with your text-editing choices. (If the toolbar is not there, go to View> and make sure Tool Options is checked.)
  3. To put the text on the outside of the circle, click Reverse direction and then select Baseline or Bottom in the Text placement line. If you don’t use Reverse direction, then use Top or Ascent.
  4. To move text on the inside or outside edge, use the Offset line. This measurement is in mm, not inches even if you have inches checked as the default measurement. To move text to the right use positive numbers, to move to the left, put a minus (-) in front of the number. For example, type in 200 and hit enter and the text moves to the right. To move the text to the left, type in -300 and hit enter. You can also use the up and down arrows, but you still need to hit the enter button to apply the change.
  5. The Text alignment line is used to move text on a line. You can also move, change path, edit, and break apart your text. For step-by-step instructions in the built-in manual, click on the Show Help icon on the top toolbar (the icon that looks like an arrow with a question mark), and then click on the Font icon A. You can also use the PDF manual at Start>Programs>Creative DRAWings®>Creative DRAWings® manual.