The age old question everyone asks in all the embroidery groups I’m in on Facebook is about organizing embroidery files. I wish I had thought it out when I first started ‘collecting’ embroidery designs!

I’ve learned a few things now that I’ve been purchasing embroidery designs for a few years and here are my suggestions. Create a folder on the computer you use for embroidery – I titled mine _EmbroideryFiles because the underscore in front puts that folder at the top of my list of folders. Within that folder I have created subfolders that are relative to the designs.

  • Applique Designs
  • Fonts
  • Key Fobs
  • Hooded Towels
  • Lip Balm Holders
  • Stuffies
  • Tic Tac Toe

Those are just a few examples (trust me…I have plenty more!!).

As soon as your purchase your designs download them to your computer and unzip the files. Save the ZIP files on an external hard drive or Dropbox, One Drive or Google Drive so that they are saved in the cloud as a back up. Set up the same folders in your external drives so you can easily find them.

On your computer only save the file type that you use on your machine. I use DST on my Janome MB4S so that’s the only file type I save along with any PDFs or images the designer included in the ZIP file. This way my computer isn’t bogged down with a bunch of extra files that I don’t need. If your computer doesn’t have a lot of memory and space you may want to keep your files on an external drive instead. I have a computer dedicated to my embroidery software and QuickBooks for my business to keep the space used to a minimum.

Another thing I have found to be extremely helpful with keeping up with my files is creating Pinterest boards by subject/type so that I can easily see images of all the designs I have (or want). This is something I also started after I was already knee deep in designs so I’m still playing catchup, but it is an awesome way to visually look through my desings. If you pin the images directly from the shop/website you purchased from you be reminded of where you purchased your designs.

On my computer I use Embrilliance software and purchased the add-on that allows you to see the thumbnails. This is helpful when you just want a quick view of a design before stitching it out or to pick the design you really want before opening in your software.