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ScanNCut & Machine Embroidery: PES to FCM to PES

Don't let the alphabet soup title of this post scare you!  It's important to understand file extensions so that you can create all of the magical projects you dream up.

  • FCM - This is the proprietary file extension that the ScanNCut uses for cutting data.
  • PES - This is a machine embroidery file extension.

I like to use a program called Simply Applique in order to help my ScanNCut and my Brother embroidery machine "talk" to each other in order to make projects like this:

In the video in this post I share how to take a PES embroidery file...

...and transform it into an FCM cutting file.

I even show you how to clean up the FCM cutting file so that it cuts the way you want it to. (The key is to use the Process Overlap tools in CanvasWorkspace, and delete the parts that aren't useful to you.)

But there's even more!  I also show you how to take that newly created FCM file and run it back through Simply Applique to create a PES applique file.

It sounds complicated, but it's actually pretty easy.  Surprisingly easy.  Watch the video for the start-to-finish instructions:

Here are some tips on cutting fabric with your ScanNCut:

  • Always use the stickiest mat possible.  Either a ScanNCut Fabric Mat or a Standard ScanNCut Mat with a High Tack Fabric Support sheet is best.
  • Use a brayer to smooth down your fabric and ensure there are no bumps or wrinkles.
  • Use a strong spray starch on your fabric to ensure both good cutting and less raveling.
  • Use the right blade for the job.
    • Cotton weight quilting fabric should be cut using the Thin Fabric Auto Blade.
    • Heavier fabric or fabric with fusible on it should be cut using a fabric-dedicated Auto Blade.  Just as you have fabric scissors and paper scissors, you should have a blade that you dedicate to cutting only fabric.

If you enjoyed this post and want more ScanNCut content, check out ScanNCut Club.

Thanks for stopping by!


P.S. I am a paid spokesperson for the Brother ScanNCut.  It is a machine that I love and use.  All projects and opinions are my own.  ScanNCut Club is not affiliated with Brother in any way.

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