Cochenille Design Studio

Have a Crafty Halloween!


Cochenille would like to wish everyone a Happy Halloween! We hope that you were able to use our software to create some spooktacular projects!

If you would like to share any of your Halloween projects that you made using our software, please feel free to submit them to to be featured on our Creative With Cochenille blog!

This Halloween I will be looking forward to sewing up a Harry Potter robe pattern I made using Garment Designer as I await trick-or-treaters!For our digital “treat” please feel free to download the Stitch Painter file or .pdf of Frankenstein’s monster made using the Full Color Import module!

Frankie Stitch Painter File

Frankie PDF

As for “tricks”, here is how I made the Stitch Painter file….

I took the image into photoshop and viewed the file size information so that I would know how to setup my document in Stitch Painter. My image was 9″ x 9″, so I knew when I went into Stitch Painter I could use a 100 x 100 unit sized document and the proportions wouldn’t be skewed since the ratios were the same.

I then changed some of my contrast settings and colorized the image in Photoshop:

Then it was as simple as selecting the image in Photoshop and copying it to my clipboard (Keyboard shortcut on mac: Cmd + C)

I then opened a new 100×100 Unit document in Stitch Painter and made sure my grid size was an even proportion (I chose 9 x 9)

Using the Full Color Import Module, I selected my entire document (100x100units) and pasted the image (Keyboard shortcut on Mac: Cmd + V)

Then I clicked and held over the live selection and chose how many colors I wanted to reduce it to. I tried various selections and reduction algorithms to see which one I liked best. 

The great thing about the Full Color Import module, is that I can clean up my palette to make it easier to start reducing my colors even more.

A useful Stitch Painter trick for reducing colors is to find where a color is used in a document by clicking on it in the Palette panel to select it, and then pressing and holding the ʻfʼ key on the keyboard. The chosen color will flash on the screen as long as the ʻfʼ key is held down(picture below). One can then find colors near the value of the previously flashing palette swatch by using the eyedropper tool.

To combine the two colors click on the first color, then press and hold down the Cmd Key (Mac) or Ctrl key (Windows) while you drag the first color over the second color in the palette. The First color selected will then become the second color.

Stitch Painter also allows the combination of two color selections to create a new averaged color. Simply click on the first color, press and hold down the Cmd + Opt key (Mac) or the Ctrl + Alt (Windows) as you drag the first color over the second color in the palette.

I reduced the colors in my image to a more manageable amount of colors. If I didn’t like how a combination turned out, I just undid my previous action and tried a new color combination (Cmd + Z on Mac or Edit > Undo)

Thank you for Trick or Treating with us today! We look forward to seeing your Halloween projects!




Have Happy 4th of July! Free Captain America Shield Gridded Design

We at Cochenille Design Studio hope that everyone is enjoying their 4th of July! Please feel free 😉 to download the Captain America Shield Cross-Stitch Pattern made using Cochenille Design Studio’s Stitch Painter software with the FCI Plug-in.

.PDF files are at the end of the post. Here is a quick overview of how I made it:

I found the logo using a google image search from

Then I opened it up in Preview and copied it into my clipboard

Opened up a new Stitch Painter Document and set my document size as 100 x 100 (file > Set Document Size).

Set my Grid Size to 10 x 10 (Layout > Grid)

Used my Marquee Tool and selected 80×80

Then pasted my image (cmd+v on mac) into Stitch Painter, Clicked and held down on the image until my Full Color Import options showed ( I chose 4 colors)

I then combined a few stray colors and cleaned up my palette.

If you want Color 1 to become Color 2, you will click on the first color, then press and hold down the Cmd Key (Mac) or Ctrl key (Windows) while you drag the first color over the second color in the palette.

Then I had the gridded design that I will be using for a Cross-Stitch pattern.

No grid view option:I saved a few .pdf versions and included them below. Have a Happy 4th of July!

Captain America Shield – Color

Captain America Shield Full Size

Captain America Shield-Symbols

Stitch Painter file:

Captain America Shield.stch







Anything but Goring: Using the Gored Skirt Style in Garment Designer

All the flowers are blooming and the sun is shining outside in sunny San Diego today and I cannot seem to stop wearing winter colors. Time to put a spring in my step and make something bright and summery!

After I snooped around on Fashion Snoops (as one does) I came across just the right inspiration: Vermillion Sands…

Fashion Snoops is a fashion trend forecasting service that provided oodles of inspiration for creatives.

‘The retro-fantastic look captures optimism and an air of cool prep. Jacquards, punchy petals and stylized shapes leverage a lively color palette, while midi silhouettes speak to a retro flavor. This postcard from paradise is comes at a perfect time, offering bright nostalgia before the political and cultural moment we’re in.’

I obviously couldn’t pass up the color pallette. I usually wear bland colors day-to-day so when I make something myself, I want it to be bright!

Skirts are always easy and breezy with Garment Designer so I’m choosing to follow some forecasted trend details for Spring Summer 2018 and make my own take on a pleated skirt.

Now I have a pretty hefty amount of bright colors to choose from in my fabric stash, because I love to buy them for all those projects I don’t get around to making…sigh

I have striped bright yellow organza that was given to me by a friend and a couple remnants from past projects. Since I cant choose which one to be the underlay…why not just do both!?

First I’m going to pattern the overlay which I plan on pleating. I want to do the overlay first so that once I make the pattern I can measure the hem length and see how full my gores need to be for the underlay.

When I go to Garment Designer I decide to use a shape instead of skirt option…why? Because I’m basically just gathering a rectangle for the skirt so I can keep my stripes perpendicular to the floor without any of that chevroning at the side seams business.

I have a lot of the yellow fabric so I decided I’m going to gather or pleat it at a 3:1 ratio to make it full.

I take my waist and multiply it by 3 to get 81″ for the width. I want my skirt length to be 28″ from my waist with a 1″ hem.

Width= 81″+.75″ (seam allowance)= 81.75″

Length= 28″+1″+ 3/8 (waist seam allowance) = 29.375″

Simple enough… l’ll be cutting this on the fold.

I’m not going to worry about printing this out since I can just cut a rectangle without a pattern but I want to save it for future reference so I know the measurements I used for this skirt.

Now that i know my hem length is going to be 81″ finished I’m going to start a gored skirt pattern…

I set my bottom length to 27 (Options > Bottom Length)

I start fitting my waist by measuring what it is currently by selecting the waist points and multiplying by 8

3.66 x 8 = 29.28

So I have some adjusting to do… I want the gored waistline piece to be 3.375 (27/8) total.

I’m going to do this by selecting the outer waistline points and nudging them in with my keyboard arrows equally from both sides until I get close enough to 3.375.

I like to zoom in when I’m making small nudges so that Garment Designer will make the nudges in smaller increments

Now I’m going to make the hemline add up to 81″ total

81″/8= 10.125

Now my Information and Recommendations is giving me a warning (lower right part of screen, see Appendix E in the manual) but I’m going to ignore it since I still have some things to adjust which should fix the angles that are off.

I kept the angles from the top two waist line points and just adjusted the bezier curves coming from the hip points to smooth out the seam lines and it fixed my error message.

Now to adjust the hem I just took the center point and nudged it down until I could see that my side seam angles were closer to 90 degrees. I do this so that when I sew the seams together they don’t make a point.

By doing this I made a ‘point’ down the center, but I just know that when I cut this out I’m going to make sure I make it a rounded hem (see below).


I made the mistake of not exploring all of my option on Garment Designer *sigh*

I had left my ‘Skirt Style’ option at the default setting ‘fitted’ when there was a ‘fit and flare’ option that could have saved me time! Lesson learned…look through all the dropdown menus and exlpore all your options before starting a pattern!

*end of update*

Then I add my 1″ Hem (Additions> Add hem or Cmd+H on mac)

…the I add my seam allowances to everything but my hem (Additions> Custom Seam Allowance 3/8″) and get ready to print.

These are just my preferences for printing…

I turn my grid on (Display > Show Grid)

Turn off my dimensions ((Display > Show Dimensions or Cmd+U on mac)

Show only the pattern (Display > Show Pattern)

Display my final pattern (Display > Final Pattern or Cmd+7 on mac)

Scale it to actual size (Display > Scale to> Actual size or Cmd+1 on mac)

Then I can hide my overlay shape by selecting the rectangle and hitting ‘H’ for hide

and view my print preview to see if I am wasting any paper (Display > Print Preview)

I like to change my Page Setup between landscape and portrait at this point to see which one will be more efficient and in this case it is portrait. I will only print out pages 1-4 and 5-7.

After printing my pattern out I like to use a glue stick to put the pieces together. Once again this is just my personal preference…

Then I like to mount it to manilla pattern paper so that I can cut out my notches and trace it onto my fabric. 

Side note: I also tried using my new elastic serger foot to serge on some horsehair braid onto the hem of the skirt, which kept it at a consistent tension with less fuss. Needless to say I will be using this foot on future projects now that I know how simple it is!

I also think I could have gathered the skirt a bit more….maybe at a 4:1 ratio if I wanted it to be fuller as the fabric was pretty thin and gathered easily.

Now I know I won’t have a top in my wardrobe to match this skirt so back onto Garment Designer I go….

I want my top to be off the shoulder and full of ruffles so the “straps” of the pattern I’m just going to ignore when I go to sew.

After I printed out the 1st pattern I made a quick sample out of spare fabric then fit it to my body. I then edited my pattern on Garment Designer to save the adjustments and printed out the second pattern which I used for the top.

and after a bit of sewing…the tutti frutti fruits of my labor!

Thank you for reading about my project. We love to see what our users create using our software so please feel free to email us any of your Garment Designer projects at!

Fabric Inspiration for Garment Designer, Los Angeles Style

Fabric Inspiration for Garment Designer, Los Angeles Style

It’s Garment Designer project time! Earlier this month, I accompanied my advanced design fashion students to Los Angles garment district so that they could source fabrics for their collections. We started downtown in the fabric district and ended up at Mood Fabrics by day’s end.

On the streets of LA
Notions Store
Ribbon embellished fabric
Lace yardage
and lace trims

I managed to refrain from purchase… but then, we went to Mood Fabrics.

So, here you see my weakness. Here are some upcoming Garment Designer Projects.

A Digital Print fabric… whoa… it makes me dizzy, but it is so fun!
A linen open weave… perfect for a felting base.
A die-cut polyester which I will use for a sublimation project.

It’s Spring Break now,,, so maybe I can get one of these items made. Wish me luck!


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