WOW – I’m blown away by all the physical changes to the Husqvarna VIKING DESIGNER EPIC 3. And what about the changes to the embroidery unit? So exciting! If there are that many changes on the outside, what changes are there to the software that runs the DESIGNER EPIC 3?
Earlier this week, we experienced the easy-to-use setup process when we turned on the DESIGNER EPIC 3 for the first time and saw the brand-new home screen. I suspect there’s a whole lot more new! Let’s check it out! Wait – did you notice the icon to access the User’s Guide? Yep – it’s built-in and searchable by Table of Contents, Index, or topic. LOVE!
Let’s start by moving into Sewing mode, which takes me to the JoyOS Advisor. The JoyOS Advisor allows me to choose the type and weight of fabric for the project I’m about to sew. If I’m performing a sewing style or using one of the Exclusive Sewing Techniques, or perhaps I want some instructions for a Sewing Project, I can choose that right here on this screen. When I want to start a new project or sew for the day, I’ll touch the START NEW icon in the middle of the screen.
Wow – the entire interface, while familiar, is different, but in a good way. I find the stitches and techniques broken out into logical menus, making them easier to find.
You’ll find new categories in the Exclusive Sewing Techniques tab. There are THREE new categories – Motif Builder Stitches, Floating Stitches, and Guided Pictogram Stitches. I’ll check some of them out tomorrow.
You’ll find instructions for some projects in the JoyOS Advisor, with two categories – Fashion and Home Dec. There are a couple that I want to make! If the project involves embroidery, opening the instructions will move you to embroidery mode, and the design is available to download from the instructions. It’s so cool that you have projects at your fingertips if you want to jump in but are unsure what to make.
There are MANY tutorials in the JoyOS Advisor, so if you get stumped with something or want to learn a new technique, be sure to explore the tutorials, which include videos to assist your learning process.
Let’s touch Start New and go to Sewing Mode. Again, while this screen is familiar, it’s new and in a good way. The look is cleaner. Let’s take a closer look at the top section.
On the ribbon at the top, there’s a toggle icon to move between sewing and embroidery mode without starting a new project. Next is the mySewnet blog, where you can find new projects and sewing inspirations. The next icon allows access to your mySewnet account and the icon for Project Viewer. OH! This icon enables you to toggle a tutorial on and off the screen. I LOVE this – it was on my wish list!
The large crown with the H in the middle will take us back to the Home Screen.
Then we see the clock (super important) and the Quick Help, which is AMAZING. If you touch Quick Help and ANY icon on the screen, it’ll tell you what that icon is. There’s the Wi-Fi symbol; the last is the Settings menu.
The second ribbon bar shows the type and weight of fabric that I chose in the JoyOS Advisor. If I need to change that, I can touch that icon, and the selection menu pops up. On the right-hand side, I see the recommendations for the stitch that I’ve chosen – using the Integrated Dual Feed (IDF), a size 80 needle, the stitch number (wait for that), and the needle down is selected.
What’s new is the down arrow. That’s an indication that another menu will open if we touch it, and it’ll provide the recommended settings in a list format rather than as icons across the top right.
In the central part of the screen, we see an image of the stitch in actual size and the recommended presser foot.
On the right is the MENU to select stitches from the sewing machine or a file. But there are TWO NEW icons on the top. We’ll get to those later. So much NEW – it’s hard to take it all in!
Here’s a close-up of the bottom half of the screen. If you see an “I” with a circle around it, touching it will provide more information on the names of icons on the screen. In this case, there wasn’t room to put the words for the mirroring functions, but the “I” tells me what they are. The down arrow will close the stitch edit menu if I need more room on the screen. I love all the flexibility we have to make the screen layout work for us!
The row of adjustments allows me to move the needle to the left or right to adjust the stitch position. I can also adjust the length of the stitch and manually change the thread tension if needed.
Look at the very bottom of the screen. I see icons, but they are LABELED. Some are NEW, like Stitch Repeat and Stitch Creator.
Two were existing functions, but the names were changed, and the functionality changed somewhat.
Tie-Off used to be called Fix, and by opening it up, you get a menu for whether you want the Tie-Off at the beginning, the end, or both. Create Sequence used to be called Program, a scary term, so this is more user-friendly. And it’s NOT scary at all.
WOW – so much new, yet much better, and it is easier to read and find the functions. I LOVE the new menus.
If I choose a decorative stitch, the stitch editing options look different. I see toggles beside each of the adjustments. Not only can I change the width of the stitch, but if the stitch is less than 9.00 mm wide, I can adjust the stitch position, remembering that the maximum stitch width is 9.00 mm for standard stitches. If the stitch is satin, the length can toggle to adjust the density. The thread tension was switched to thread portioning automatically as a preferred method of thread delivery. The toggle allows me to change the pressure on the presser foot.
Let’s look at the stitch menus. Wait a minute – this looks different, and it is! Notice how each stitch is easy to spot in its little box. The icons are large and easy to read. But the stitch menu is small, as I can only see eight stitches.
There’s a fix for that. Do you see that little dotted triangle in the bottom left corner of the stitch menu? Grab it and pull either down, to the left, or both. Guess what happens? Yep – I can make the stitch menu as big or small as I need. OK – I LOVE this feature!
Wait – did you notice something else? Yes – the A Menu (Utility Stitches) is now broken into sub-menus! WOW – this will make finding a particular stitch much more straightforward than scrolling through lengthy menus of stitches.
Notice that the name of each category is at the top of the stitches. OK – I love this, and it’ll help anyone find the appropriate stitch. Some of the stitches are moved into new categories to make the grouping more logical, so you may need to search, but for the most part, the stitches remain in the main menu categories.
There are two new stitch sub-categories. One is Floating Stitches, and the other is Guided Pictograms, and we’ll explore them later this week. I need more time to share all the NEW features with you!
I also love the ability to move the menu bar around the screen. You can move the menu around the screen whenever you see the four vertical lines. This feature works for stitch menus, tutorials, and probably others. This feature was on my wish list, and I’m so excited to see it here!
We could spend oodles of time investigating everything new, but let’s move into the embroidery edit screen. Remember, we have two ways to get there. We can move between Sewing and Embroidery by using the toggle icon without losing our work in sewing or embroidery mode. Alternatively, we could return to the JoyOS Advisor page and touch Start New, which erases any stitches or embroidery designs we were working with.
Here’s the top of the embroidery edit screen. The icons on the top ribbon have not changed, except that the toggle button shows Sewing Mode since we are in Embroidery Mode.
The second ribbon shows new information. On the left is the UNDO tool, and beside that is the Zoom tool. You’ll also see the selected hoop size and information about the feet. The recommended foot for Embroidery is the Q foot, but the Artificial Intelligence shows that the A Utility Foot for IDF is currently in place. Yep – there’s AI in the DESIGNER EPIC 3 to identify the presser foot presently installed on the DESIGNER EPIC 3. It’ll also tell you if the foot is backward or not! That’s awesome!
On the right-hand side (notice the four bars on the top, so this menu bar moves around the screen) are the icons used to input designs/stitches/files into embroidery edit. I can pull from the built-in designs, fonts, stitches from sewing mode (YES!), files, and the mySewnet Library! Did you know you could do all that with the DESIGNER EPIC 3? It’s not just for loading existing embroidery designs.
On the bottom half of the embroidery edit screen are familiar tools, like mirror top to bottom and side to side, as well as duplicate and the trash can. The tools for scaling, positioning, and rotating are also there.
Again, along the bottom are tools labelled to provide even more options within the embroidery edit. Save embroidery designs, send designs through the mySewnet Cloud, Hoop Options, Resize, and more! Again, some features have gone through a name change; Create Sequence used to be called Program, Create Shape used to be Design Shaping, and Create Applique was called Design Applique. The icon for saving a file is now a disk rather than the heart. There’s a new icon called Stitch Creator, which we’ll get to tomorrow. We don’t have time to cover all these fantastic features in the DESIGNER EPIC 3. I’ll have to return another week to explain everything I missed this week.
As we move into Embroidery Stitch Out, there’s the Welcome to Embroidery Stitch Out screen, now called Embroidery Stitch-Out Settings. You can bypass this page, but it provides valuable information, so I suggest leaving it active and ensuring you read everything before you move to Embroidery Stitch-Out.
Now we can move into the Embroidery Stitch-Out. Wow – there are so many cool things here as well. Some of them are new, and some are not. I always find it amazing when people haven’t even explored some essential tools on their Embroidery Stitch-Out screen. There’s no time to go into them in detail, but use that Quick Help!
The last screen I’ll go into today is the Settings Menu. That’s the gear icon in the top right. What I find about the DESIGNER EPIC 3 is that the menus are much cleaner and easier to read. The categories seem to be easier to decipher. Perhaps it’s just me, but I LOVE the new layout.
Here are the settings for Embroidery. Again, they seem to be very clear and easy to read.
One of my favorite little extras is the clock. It’s a minor detail, but I always refer to the clock. There’s also an alarm in the DESIGNER EPIC 3. I learned that to use the alarm, you need to set the TIME that you want the alarm to sound, not the time between now and when you want the alarm to ring. That makes sense – it’s like your alarm clock – you set a time when the alarm goes off. So, if you need to be mindful of the time, and who wouldn’t get lost in sewing and embroidery on this fantastic sewing and embroidery machine, be sure to set the alarm! Remember, it’s an alarm, NOT a timer.
If you live in North America, scroll a bit to find your time zone.
WOW — I haven’t even sewn anything, and I’m so excited! Before I started sewing, I wanted an idea of what tools were available and how to use them on the Husqvarna VIKING DESIGNER EPIC 3. Don’t worry – tomorrow, we’ll check out some AMAZING features in sewing mode. I can’t wait to share those with you.
Have a great day!