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About the cover headingStitchesCover

Jay Fishman, president of Beachwood, OH-based Wicked Stitch of the East Inc., digitized the elaborate abstract design on the cover of this issue.  “Doing work that’s abstract is more difficult because it’s not finite – it’s open to interpretation,” says Fishman, a Stitches Editorial Advisory Board member.  “It really takes a trained digitizing eye.”


Fishman worked from an Adobe Illustrator-created design, but, as is typical for a digitizer, he retooled the art to create a top-notch embroidery stitch file. After receiving the design, Fishman scanned it into his art software and began manipulating the art, stitch by stitch, into a design file that could be machine embroidered functionally and attractively. This involved developing virtual visualizations of how different aspects of the design would work as a single element while fitting seamlessly into the piece as a whole.

Focused on creating interest through depth and texture, Fishman and his staff spent days planning and tweaking. “We took a concept for a segment of the design and we do that part. Then we looked at it and said, ‘This is how it fits in or doesn’t fit in,’” says Fishman, noting that he tried different stitch types on the design’s green circle before settling on one. “It’s about finding a good balance. When using textures, there’s a fine line between alluring and repelling.”

Ultimately, Fishman struck the right balance, creating a complicated design that called for 48 colors, 55 color changes and 56 stops. Shades of turquoise, khaki, cyan, yellow and orange were incorporated into patterns of squares and seemingly drifting circles in the 11.75-inch-by-9.66- inch embroidered cover art. Jane C. Cibulskas, owner of Berea, OH-based National Embroidery & Transfer Services (asi/299298), sewed out the nearly 246,000 stitches on a singlehead machine.

“After being in this industry for 30 years, it was a dream come true and an honor to do the cover for Stitches,” Fishman says. – Christopher Ruvo

Stitches Magazine May 2011