January 2022 Development Notes For Embroidermodder 2

31st of January, 2022

Hi backers,

since the last update development has been focused on mostly not user-facing aspects of the program. This is what we planned in the timetable, aiming to release the libembroidery library for the end of the month.

The idea being that if we can fix an API for libembroidery early, it will focus development into a program that remains more consistent by the height of the Summer.

Unfortunately, this was too ambitious. But we can discuss what has changed, and why a later date is better than focusing on hitting this milestone.

Broad Development Goals

We want:

To meet these goals we are making a C/FreeGLUT application:

Other decisions made to meet these goals are detailed below.

The New Settings System

In the attempt to convert the mostly C++ codebase to C, we developed a basic system for storing the data of Embroidermodder (including all the icons) as a single JSON file weighing in at about 6Mb.

This allows the second broad development goal to be met.

Reducing Reliance on Qt5

The FreeGLUT variant of the code (in gui.c) will eventually be the software.

The broad development goals should make that very complex change a sequence of smaller, less complex changes. For example: breaking apart highly object-oriented code that relies on high level Qt function calls into data and code and then seperating out the code parts into C and C++ functions.

Color Palettes

Using a custom script we converted all the icons into xpm, then using another reduced their palettes down to 16 colors + transparency.

This hasn’t affected their appearance significantly, and makes making a global GUI palette feasible. With a global GUI palette we can make icon themes be a simple remap of the palette.


Overall, the software is easier to understand. But not easy enough for it to be worth committing to extensive documentation that will likely have to change. This also makes deciding on a API difficult.

Based on this, a short term aim can be writing more high level documentation like this update to clarify (even just to the team) why we made the decisions we have.


Robin Swift

The Embroidermodder Team

Open Collective and New Plan

19th of December, 2021

Hi, welcome to our first update after switching to Open Collective.

I hope that we can get people excited about open software and hardware for embroidery again. Clearly there was some real talent and effort from Jonathon, Mark and other contributors in making this happen. Hopefully, Josh and I can make these programs a standard fixture of garage workshops by making them easy to install, modify, build and distribute.

I’ve sketched out a timetable for the development of Embroidermodder, I feel I should share it with everyone:

Date Event
Dec 2021 - Jan 2022 libembroidery 1.0 features, particularly the basic file format support and fills Bugfixing, Testing, QA for libembroidery
31st of Jan 2022 libembroidery 1.0 will be released, then updates will slow down and the Embroidermodder 2 development version will be fixed to the API of this version.
Feb 2022 An overview of what has changed will be written up for the website as a news update Better documentation of libembroidery.
Feb-April 2022 Finish the conversion to new GUI toolkit
April-May 2022 Finish all the targets in the Design, or assign them to 2.1.
May-June 2022 Stop pushing new features. Bugfixing, Testing, QA for Embroidermodder 2
Summer Solstice (21st of June) 2022 Embroidermodder 2 is officially released. Distribute NSIS installer, debian package, fedora package, mac bundle and source archives
July 2022 News and Documentation work for Embroidermodder 2

Embroidermodder 2 is a zlib licensed software and we endevour to keep it free and well documented. Check out our main github page to see.



Our Kickstarter Crowdfunding Campaign is LIVE!

March 17, 2014

Embroidermodder 2 Kickstarter Campaign

We have launched our crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter! It will be running until Sunday, April 20th. The way Kickstarter operates is that we need to reach our funding goal to receive any funds. There are downloads available for Windows (32-bit), Linux (32 and 64-bit), Mac OS X (64-bit) and Raspberry Pi (Raspbian) on the Kickstarter page. There has been a ton of work done to get to this point and to ensure a timely and stable delivery, this campaign needs to succeed. We really want to shake up the embroidery world and we hope you agree. The link to our campaign is: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/redteam316/embroidermodder-2-for-windows-mac-linux-pi-and-ard

… also check out our shamrockin’ embroidery design created with Embroidermodder 2 using work-in-progress manual satin command!

Lucky you! Download Here.

A Shamrockin Embroidery Design

–Jonathan and Josh

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Fast Forward

February 13, 2014

There have been some changes that happened over the past several months:

The launch of the Kickstarter campaign was delayed but is still going to happen. Unless there are other unforeseen setbacks, the revised plan is to launch our campaign on March 17.

We have started setup of a nightly build/continuous integration system using Travis-CI. This is important as it will allow quicker bug fixes and increased stability long term. Currently this is only available for 64-bit Linux builds but will eventually include OSX, Windows and Arduino.

We have also improved the stability and improved the API of our backend library: libembroidery. The API is still changing but we now can produce standalone static and shared versions of libembroidery. Another notable change is that there are now experimental Delphi and Lazarus(FreePascal) bindings in the works for libembroidery, contributed by x2nie.

Last but not least, I have a demonstration of our libembroidery code embedded on an Arduino. The video below simulates the stitching by drawing it to a 2.8" TFT display (v1) made by Adafruit. It’s really fast so I slowed it down for the video. Instead of drawing, we could change it to control motors and other hardware to create an open source embroidery machine. This is what the brain of an embroidery machine looks like and it just needs a heart and body. Enjoy the video!


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Crowdfunding Campaign Coming Soon!

September 9, 2013

Kickstarter Logo

There has been a considerable amount of development time put into Embroidermodder 2 over the past several months. To be able to keep up this momentum, there needs to be at least one full time developer working on it. We are planning on launching a Kickstarter campaign in early October if everything goes according to plan. We also plan to release an alpha version during this timeframe, so there are many good things on the horizon! Successful funding will have a major impact on how soon the final version will be released.

The preview link to our campaign is here, feel free to leave feedback and spread the word via Twitter, Facebook, email, or word of mouth. Keep an eye out, because it’s coming!


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New Website!

September 9, 2013

The Embroidermodder website now has a fresh new look. The content has been updated to reflect the upcoming version, Embroidermodder 2. Check out our features page for a summary of what to expect with Embroidermodder 2.

The background is a tiled image of an actual design that was stitched out during the pre-alpha stage. It was created by Nina Paley and Theodore Gray using Mathematica in conjunction with our software. They have graciously allowed us to use it for the project in whichever way we wish. We thought it looked so good, that it has become the new theme for Embroidermodder 2. To check out some of the more interesting embroidery projects they are working on, look here.

The old website which was for Embroidermodder 1 has been preserved and can be found here for anyone interested.


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