An embroidery machine is used to automatically create a design from a pre-made pattern that is input into the machine. Most embroidery machines used by professionals and hobbyists today are driven by computers that read digitized embroidery files created by special software.
The artwork for embroidery design is entered into the computer. The computer transfers the robotics instructions necessary for stitching the design to the embroidery machine. The machine operator places the item, such as a sweatshirt or ball cap on the machine with a holder or hoop. The operator also chooses the colors of thread appropriate to the design. Once the "set up" has been performed, stitching may begin by pressing the "Start" button on the machine. It will precisely and efficiently stitch the design. A typical logo on a ball cap may take five minutes or so to stitch, roughly a dozen caps an hour.