I’m so excited. I found a way to organize my machine embroidery designs and it’s all free. I’m a Mac person so I’m using the free apps Notes and Grab to set up a nice system that is available on all my devices. 

I shared this on the Bernina Lovers Facebook page and found out that Grab is no longer available in Mojave. My dear sweet husband got all up in arms because we use Grab a lot. He immediately did a search and found out that all the functions of Grab are now part of the latest operating system. It is under File>Take Snapshot. There you will find options similar to what Grab offers. Just wanted to cover that base before I describe what I did.

I decided to use the Notes app. It is free and available on all my devices. That way I can have my embroidery patterns with me everywhere and can move them to a USB stick from either of my computers. This helps with looking for thread or fabrics when I’m shopping.

In Notes, you can have main folders with sub-folders inside them. My main folder is titled Machine Embroidery. So far, inside of it I have added sub-folders entitled: Autumn, Birds, Butterflies & Bugs, Christmas, Floral, Fonts, Words & Phrases. Then I added another layer under Christmas: Ornaments, Snowmen. As need be, I can divide the other categories into sub-categories and, if I’m not mistaken, even sub-sub-categories.

Screen shot of how I organized my machine embroidery patterns
Here’s a screen shot of what I did. You can see the Grab photo in the lower righthand corner, the documents I put in the file in the center, and to the left the tiny graphic that shows up with the title of the note.

Inside of each category I have a note for each pattern. Inside that note, I have attachments for any documents pertaining to that pattern, including the pattern itself, pdfs that show the color chart, text documents with copyright information, etc.

In order to see each pattern in color, I use the Quick View button in Finder to bring up the color pdf. Then I use the selection button in Grab, select just the design picture, and take a snapshot. I drag that to the note for that design and drop it. Voilà, a tiny snapshot of the design shows up in the menu to the left. That way I can just scroll through my designs without having to open each one to see what they look like.

I then put all the patterns into a file called Moved Embroidery Designs as a backup. I keep that in the Downloads File. That way I don’t have to have more than one Finder window open when I’m moving the designs to their new homes.

I’ve tested it enough to know I can just drag the .exp file to the USB stick and it will download. I have not tested the USB stick on the sewing machine, yet. I had to work over the weekend and didn’t have time to do any sewing. I’ll test it out and if there are any other changes I’ll note them here.

Anyway, if you use a Mac, I think this is a great way to keep everything in one place, be able to see it in a flash, and not have to pay money to do it.

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