AcuDesign: Editor: Mirror, Skew, Resize and Rotate

I spend most of my time selecting the design(s) I want to use. With over 100,00 files that can take some time.  I think my next largest investment in time, is selecting colors.  I sometimes agonized over colors before I even open the stitch file for editing.  Changing the hoop color and thread colors are very important to me.  Probably 3rd in my list of time investment,  is pre-arranging. I’m arranging the designs through mirroring, resizing and moving into how I want my finished project to appear.  I often duplicate, ie. make multiple copies of a design and then arrange the duplicates. Frequently, I mirror or rotate. Sometimes I do both.  It’s amazing at how many times I’ve rotated a design to make it fit perfectly into my hoops. I don’t resize all that often. Mostly I resize when a design is just slightly too large for a hoop. I prefer to split the design and make multiple hoopings rather than resizing. There are times however when I want the size to change, and those times are often enough, that resizing designs is one of my considerations when looking for an embroidery editing program.  More often than resizing, I rotate.   So for this post, I’ve decided to address the functions I use so frequently: duplicate, mirror, resize and rotate.

For my project, I wanted two copies of design to stitch out.  Yes I could have rehooped and stitched the design a second time. But why when I’ve got a hoop big enough to hold both?  I touched my design opening Editor. Touched hoops and selected the Royal hoop. I’m not sure why, but AcuDesign turned the background to pink. That’s supposed to indicate that the design is too big for the hoop. It isn’t.   When I pinch (standard Touch gesture), the hoop background returned to the natural linen color.


after pinching:


I know that I want to stitch my design twice and it will just about take the full height of my hoop as it is now. So I click the rotate button on the hoops menu.


No idea why it’s pink again, but I have plenty of room for what I want to do and the pink disappears with my next action. I spent a lot of time and made many mistakes discovering the fastest way to duplicate and mirror. I touched the Hand icon to exit Hoops and clicked the All button which in the Select menu. I made note of the length of the design (not shown in the pic above). Just copied the length to a bit of paper next to the table I was working on. This gives me a reference, something to check back against to ensure that my new copy stays the same size as the original.

Then I selected Copy followed by Paste from the very top menu on the right.


There is also Cut and Trash/Delete up in that menu; functions that were previously not available. On the left is Done which exits the Editor, Search (which I don’t yet know how is used in the Editor) Undo and Redo.  Pretty much standard functions. Copy and paste are the functions which are used to create another copy, a duplicate the original design, anywhere. Keep this in mind for the next post.


It’s the Clothes Line that tells me I’ve done something beyond select. OK, the design does look a little darker. But it is seeing 12 objects pinned up there instead of the 6 I’m accustomed to that tells me I now have two complete copies of my design. I don’t want the same repeat exactly. I want the 2nd design to horizontally mirror the first. I touch and hold in the center of the design (or thereabouts) and pull downward so I can see both copies and work just on the duplicate.


It’s important to know that there are two sets of control actions.  The set above and the set below that skews/rotates.


Touching any of the purple circles changes between the two. It’s a toggle action. Touch you get one set. Touch again, the other set reappears. It’s another time when I was a bit slow on the uptake and it took me several seconds to realize I had two sets and what they did. In my defense, those arrows do look a bit alike and they are in the same color circles. It would have helped me if the circles changed color when the control functions changed. However now that I know about the 2 sets of controls, I’ll be OK. When you want to take action (not just switch between control sets), touch and hold one of the arrows.

Touch and hold while pushing or pulling any of the arrows below resizes the design. Just stop when it is the size you want. I touched and held the arrow in my orange circle below and pulled straight across to the right. At first the design shrinks, resizes to a line,  then it starts flipping.


I continued pulling to the right Until my design had completely flipped and was the same size (6.503 in these pix) I had noted at the beginning. It can be tricky to end up with exactly the same number.  It can be done but is a skill I had to build i.e I did this over and over to finish with exactly 6.503 length.


Design mirrored!  Happy Dance. !!! In times past, I would save a copy of the design at this point just because it took me so long to figure out and get it right.

I wanted the new mirrored copy to be stitched out on the same horizontal line as the original. So  I touched and held in the center of the 2nd and lower design and moved it up and across from the original. This is the design I want to stitch on my FTT’s.


I’m once again concerned with stitching order. If I take it to the machine now, I will change threads 4 times even though I’m only using 2 colors. I touched on an empty part of the hoop which deselected all the objects. In the Clothes line, I touched in turn  the 3 red objects visible on the left of the Clothes Line. (See pic below). The design in the hoop also showed that only these 3 are selected. On the Clothes Line I touched and moved the 3 as a group to in front of the last set of red icons.


The design in the hoop didn’t change only the stitching position in the Clothes Line. As far as what I want on my finished FTT, my design is complete. I have two copies of the design. One is a mirror image. Also, they will stitch out in an order that requires the fewest of thread changes.

I touched Done which saved my changes in the MyDesign category of the Manager.

To be honest, I miss the icons of Embird which allowed me to duplicate and mirror so much faster. The AcuDesign controls are very powerful but were harder for me to master. Embird provides icons to do the most common changes and also provides  separate  functions and multiple ways to specify minute changes.  I can’t reject AcuDesign out of hand just because this time it was more difficult. I know that I am on a learning curve. As I build knowledge and skill, AcuDesign may become as easy for me as Embird. But I can’t help missing those quick rotate and mirror icons.