This article goes in-depth about the many advantages of using Hatch embroidery software. It’ll begin by sharing some Hatch user testimonials, comments & reviews.
Next, I’ll provide you with my personal opinion on Hatch. Having won over 30 awards for digitizing & working with dozens of embroidery software programs over the years (including my own: Perla), I’ll break down what I feel really makes Hatch stand out & why.
P.S. As an official Hatch reseller, if you order or download the free trial through us, we’ll provide you with added exclusive bonuses, including ESA fonts, embroidery designs, support, and education. Click here to learn more now.
Hatch Embroidery Customer Reviews & Testimonials:
“This software does everything I imagined and lots more
I knew for several years that I wanted to purchase digitizing software. I looked at all the competitor brands of software and ended up buying Hatch Embroidery Digitizer. I have never regretted it… I can digitize all the artwork I have in my head exactly as I want it. Even if you’re not artistic, you can create designs using the multitude of tools within Hatch. So, the software is great, but the support really makes a difference. Hatch support through Digitizing Made Easy folks are super friendly and helpful, there are lots of training videos as well as live training seminars available, and the Wilcom Hatch Facts page in Facebook connects you with experts and other users who have experienced different scenarios who can walk you through their learning experiences. I highly recommend the Hatch software for anyone who wants to unleash their creativity or even those who want to tweak purchased designs. I’m a happy Hatch user.“
– Gayle O’Grady
“Hatch is so easy to use
I learned about Hatch almost a year ago. I had been working with two other software programs. I wanted to digitize photographs and use different fonts. I basically had given up. The programs were too hard…didn’t do what I wanted…and the learning curve was greater than the time I had to invest in it (I’m a full time teacher).
When I heard about Hatch, my first thought was yeah, yeah, just another software…my Mom however thought differently and purchased it. I told her I would help her load it on her computer. Well…..after helping her and then watching some lessons, I soon discovered it was completely different that what I had been using. Needless to say, that computer was “left” at my house and I’ve never looked back.
Hatch is so easy to use. Then add on top all the support from other users and the video lessons the possibilities of creativity are endless. The ESA fonts and elements that work with Hatch are also game-changing! You basically just type in what you want and BAM lettering that is virtually perfect, automatically. Plus, you can manipulate the fonts in a lot of different ways which I really love.
One of the other features about Hatch I love is the auto fabric and design info. It will tell you what stabilizer to use, how much and if you change the fabric it changes the stitching to accommodate. AWESOME!
Now, I am able to personalize a co-worker’s stocking for her son’s first Christmas in only about 15 min! A year ago, I never would have been able to do that. There is a catch though….once you go Hatch, you won’t look back and your embroidery will never be the same!“
– Cynthia Steiner
“Hatch has transformed me from a useless digitizer to a competent one
1) What are your overall thoughts regarding Hatch?
“Simply the best value on the market for a package, that is easy to learn. I’m a logical thinker and Hatch is great for me because it too is logical. I like the way you can buy it in modules if you want to build up to full digitizing, and the stage payments make it easier if you want to jump straight in with the full package. But the 30 day free trial of the full package shows the confidence that Wilcom have in this product, and means that you can really get to grips with it before committing to spend any money. Most other trials of digitizing software have limits for what you can do. Not Hatch. Try it, save it and stitch it before you decide to buy. Brilliant.”
2) How does Hatch compare to other software programs you’ve tried?
“My main experience has been with one of the most widely used home digitizing packages. I hate it. Whilst it does have some features I would like to see in Hatch (like automatic curved corners on squares and the ability to go from an open line to a closed shape) it is clunky. Every feature is hidden behind sub menus which means you are constantly having to change screens. You are even encouraged to create a shortcut toolbar for your most used features. That’s not necessary in Hatch as it is easy to access everything you need without losing digitizing screen space. I continue to use the other software for photostitch but then bring the files into Hatch for tidying up (as it’s a stitch file I can’t really say editing).”
3) How has Hatch helped advance your embroidery?
“Without Hatch I would not only be purchasing lots of designs of dubious quality, but I would not be able to make all those personalised gifts for my friends and family. The auto fabric features mean that my embroidery is spot on every time using the suggested stabilisers. Without this software I would undoubtedly have more hours in the day though as I spend as much time as possible creating magic with Hatch.”
– Meryl Robinson
My Review of Hatch Embroidery Software:
A few years ago, Hatch was introduced to the Home Embroidery market as an unknown software program, Now just a few short years later, it has already developed a reputation as the best software in the industry. You must be wondering… how is that possible in such a short period of time?
Before I answer that question, let me take you back in time. Besides having been trained as a puncher/digitizer at the age of 17, I also ran one of the two factories my family owned between the ages of 23-33. The factory I ran was our multi-head division which consisted of 136 multi-heads, to give you an idea of how much embroidery we did in those days I remember orders coming in for cap panels with 750,000 units all from the same company! Garment orders would usually average in the thousands of pieces, all with the same logos. Those were the days, contract embroidery in North America was booming, and our machines ran 6 days a week, 24 hours a day.
After witnessing the contract embroidery industry change in volume due to off-shore competition, we evolved to digitizing and then finally began transitioning into the home embroidery market 20ish years ago. I’ve got to be honest, it wasn’t an easy transition. The terminology, machines, and software were all different, and to be honest, the thing I noticed most was that the quality of embroidery was VERY different!
What I mean by that is that in the commercial world, we stayed in business for decades because the visual quality of our designs was pleasing. But more importantly, the quick runtime and softness of our work was close to perfect.
It’s quite simple if you want to make money with embroidery, the designs you feed into the machine need to be “production-friendly,” with as few jumps and trims as possible. The designs should also feel like part of the garment when taken out of the hoop. Not like it was stuck in place with a glue gun! I’ve seen that a large majority of the designs being produced and sold in the home industry are many times bulletproof and have way too many unnecessary jumps and trims.
This now leads into answering the initial question, “why is Hatch the best software in the home industry?”. The answer can be given using one-word “Wilcom”!
Who / What is Wilcom?
If you’re not familiar with Wilcom (the creator of Hatch), they have undisputedly been the world leader for developing intuitive and intelligent embroidery software for over 30 years.
I’ve been using Wilcom pretty much since the beginning of my “computerized” transition into the industry almost 30 years ago, and have been involved with Wilcom since the early DOS days. To this day Wilcom’s commercial platform dominates 90% of the embroidery world GLOBALLY!
Why does 90% of the commercial embroiders globally use Wilcom? The answer is their proprietary format called “EMB”.
Now here’s where I’m going to let you in on a ‘secret’ that until now ‘home embroiderers’ were not aware of: When I ran my factory, which had 136 multi-heads, I would digitize my designs using my own ‘Custom Recipes’ which ran best on pique knit fabric. However, not all the orders would be run on pique knit. Often times, a company would give us an order for X number of hats, X number of shirts, X number of jackets, etc., which all required the same design but had different fabric types. So rather than re-digitize a design multiple times or manually adjust stitch settings for each different fabric type, I would instead digitize it once and send that EMB file down to production. The machine supervisor would first find out what material/garment was running, and before loading it on a machine, they would change that design’s specific stitch settings using the “Fabric Assist” tool within the EMB files so it would have the best results on the specific fabric type it would be embroidered on.
Here is an example of what I mean: the first EMB file was changed to a “Thai Silk” setting using less density, underlay, and pull compensation. It has a total of 34,166 stitches. The second is the exact same design, with the click of a button I changed the fabric assist to “Stretchy Terry Cloth” setting, this will provide more density, more underlay with longer stitch lengths and more pull compensation to counteract the knap of the terry cloth, for a total of 43,298 stitches. That is the same design with an incredible difference of 9132 stitches!
The reality is, a digitized design’s properties cannot and should not be applied for all the different applications and fabric types! It simply doesn’t make sense and it’s not the way I ran my factory over two decades ago.
When I came into the home industry, that was one of the things that had shocked me most: People were providing one embroidery file and expecting it to run well on every fabric type! You cannot have the same density, stitch lengths, underlay types, pull compensations for Terry Cloth as you would Silk, Leather, Lycra, or knits. In the commercial world, when we did production, the recipes would change based on the fabric type… it just makes logical sense!
Coming into the home market, I quickly realized that the EMB format was not available, so I used a custom recipe I felt would work best on most fabrics.
Hatch & EMB formats: This Changes Everything!
A lot of home embroiderers feel that the commercial industry always had something over them. They feel like the quality in the commercial industry is, for the most part, better. Most assume that it’s due to the difference between the home and commercial machines. In reality though, that’s not the case, home machines, in theory, create the exact same stitch as a commercial machine does. So if it’s not the machine, it’s the software, and it all comes down to the EMB file!
It is unrealistic and unfair to expect a home embroiderer to know all the variables and properties a design should have for every possible fabric type you’d conceivably embroider… that would take years of experience as a digitizer and in production. Being honest with you, most “professional digitizers” don’t know these specifics either. They don’t need to. Instead, they own Wilcom software, which allows them to change the fabric types within the master EMB file.
So why didn’t the home industry know about this sooner? Well, because until Hatch was released, the only way to manipulate an EMB file as to own Wilcom’s commercial platform, which is very cost prohibitive in comparison.
Now in recent years, other software programs have tried to come out with their own version of fabric assist tools. But I can tell you from experience, they don’t do it nearly as well. Whereas other programs today may have stitch recipes created by computer programmers or embroidery hobbyists… Wilcom’s stitch recipes were carefully crafted decades ago on the wisdom of Schiflli Master Digitizers who spent their entire lives creating embroidery designs… Back when there were a lot more of us left.
Not to mention that yours truly helped contribute toward the custom stitch recipes found in the EMB file format when I was a Wilcom beta tester in the 1990s.
There have been a few times in my life where I can truly say I’ve had a “Gift from God” moment. One of those instances was when Wilcom approached me and asked if I’d be interested in becoming one of Hatch’s selected resellers globally. I say it was a “Gift” because it was something I didn’t ask for, but it was an answer to one of my long-awaited prayers.
Coming from the commercial industry to the home industry, I saw a separation between the two. Even though I knew that 99% of embroiders didn’t have the Wilcom platform, I have always included my native EMB file with all of our embroidery designs downloads. Resizing, changing fabrics, and modifying EMB files in Wilcom is an embroiderer’s fantasy come true!
When I first got the Hatch software and saw how close it was to the commercial program, that it was modular, that it read an wrote the true EMB format, that it used ESA fonts and that it was offered at an incredible price point it blew my mind! All I could say to myself is, “THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING!”
If you’ve been to any of my classes, workshops, or global retreats, you’ll quickly see how passionate I am about Hatch, the truth is, I am! When a person purchases Hatch, I honestly feel like I’ve helped them by giving them the tools they need and deserve to get better results and have more fun! From my decades of experience, I can honestly say that no software in the home industry even comes close! It is intuitive and intelligent. The software almost drives itself, and with the automatic stitch generation and filters, it helps ensure that the designs created within the software are production-friendly.
Please keep in mind I’ve learned over 20 digitizing programs and assessed others, our Digitizing Made Easy site supports eleven programs with interactive education. Hatch is not only the best but is sitting right in the sweet spot when it comes to an embroidery software price point, which can be broken into three categories:
There are a handful of programs that I would consider upper-end programs. Most of them are fairly well built and usually sold and supported by physical dealers stores. Because of all the distribution channels that the program goes through and everyone needs to make a margin off the sale, by the time it gets to the consumer, it is usually much more expensive than Hatch and not close when it comes to quality.
There are some programs which are within the same price range and are also modular like Hatch. There is one program out there that is popular with home embroiderers today, and I will admit that they had a brilliant idea of being the first to come out with a modular formula (meaning you can buy it in pieces based on your needs). This made it affordable at an entry-level, but by the time you add on all the modules, you’ve paid more than Hatch and have a program that, in my opinion, doesn’t come close to Hatch’s easy to use platform.
Then there are the “low budget” programs I’ve seen and played with, all I can say is that you pretty much get what you pay for!
Conclusion: Hatch, the Embroidery Software for Everyone!
I’ve become very passionate about spreading the word that Hatch is every “home embroiderer’s dream come true” in the same way that the Wilcom platform is the global standard commercially. For decades there had been a division in quality between the home and commercial industries because of a solution (EMB file formats) that home embroiderers didn’t even know existed. Now that the curtain has been pulled down. I feel like yelling from the rooftops, “look what you’ve been missing,” and here is the solution just for the taking. Now keep in mind, I only shared what I would consider the “Main Feature” that sets Wilcom Hatch apart! This list goes on and on…
Now on the flip side of the coin, any software program is only as good as the education that is available for it. That is where we at Digitizing Made Easy have truly excelled. Even though I had the opportunity to learn the old school ways as a very young man, I have always evolved my techniques based on the most current technology at hand. With the right tools and the right teacher, you will find that what many have told you is too difficult to learn is actually easy if you have the right coach. For that reason, I do suggest you check out our Digitizer’s Dream Course (which is level 1 of is included as a bonus if you purchase Hatch through us).
Winning 30 commercial digitizing awards, John Deer has been the most awarded embroidery digitizer in the world for over two decades now. As a 4th generation embroiderer, John has an incredibly unique history in the embroidery digitizing industry as he is the last remaining Schiffli Master Digitizer still alive and teaching in North America. John learned and apprenticed under Swiss Schiffli Master Digitizers (then known as “punchers”) over 30 years ago in his grandparents’ factory, before computers even entered the digitizing world. John has run 2 commercial embroidery factories, owned one of the world’s largest production digitizing houses, wrote the book “Digitizing Made Easy” (which has sold over 44,300 copies), and coached 100,000+ home and commercial embroiderers globally.