Visors and Cap Frames 101

Well, I said I was going to do a post on monogramming hats with fast frames (as opposed to a cap frame). I have 1 photo of a hat I did recently and I also have a real {cute} hat to monogram. I plan to post photos of the process, but visors came first today. I do monogramming for a local store and on tap for today were several logos on shirts & visors. I tried and tried and even asked on Facebook how to monogram a visor WITHOUT the cap frame, but I could.not.figure.it.out. I think it has to do with the size of the monogram (or logo in my case) and how flimsy the visor is. So…. I dug out my cap frame after not having used the thing in at least 2 years. I was dreading it and cursing along the way, but it ended up not being as hard as I thought! Lucky for you I took a gazillion cell phone pics along the way….

The cap frame consists of 3 parts and the sewing field is typically 2.5″ X 5″ if you get the cap hooped perfectly. The part below is the CAP HOOP HOLDER FRAME. I got my cap frame from Sewingmachine.com, which has a GREAT video on how to use your cap frame. I watched the video to refresh myself on the process, and I remembered from my training with Steve that you hoop visors upside down. WATCH the VIDEO!! I will explain the upside down thing more later. The holder frame attaches to a table or any surface ~ I attached mine to my Ikea Expedit shelf.

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This is the mechanism that helps you get the cap or visor hooped.

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Here is a photo of the actual CAP FRAME or CAP HOOP clamped on the holder. As you can see, there is a piece hanging down which is what secures or clamps on to the visor or hat. This part is hard to explain! Hopefully the photos will help, and again, WATCH THE VIDEO!

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There is also a DRIVER which fits on to your machine. You take the arm of the machine off by loosening the small screws and removing them and the arm. You then put the driver on which fits around the bobbin case area of the machine.

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This is what the driver looks like when it’s attached. Screws are tightened. There are 2 small screws on top and 2 bigger ones on bottom.

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This is what it looks like from underneath. I know this is a bit confusing and hopefully you may know how to install the cap frame already. This is the bigger screw tightened on the bottom, and there are 2 of these.

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Your machine came with a handy dandy tool box, and you must insert this RISER. Since the cap or visor is curved, this helps the cap or visor glide back and forth as it is monogramming. The photo below also shows you how the drive fits on to the machine.

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Now it’s time to get my visor ready. I’ve marked the center and am ready to get the visor hooped.

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I use cap backing stabilizer and lay it across the hoop {which is on the holder}.

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Most visors have a little bit of lining ~ fold that down.

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Try to line up the center mark on the visor with the center line on the cap hoop/holder.

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The huge silver piece you see below usually clamps down on the bill of a hat. We are doing a visor, so we hoop upside down and nothing goes inside that clamp. Pull the clamp over that was hanging down in a previous photo, and what you want to do is barely grip the top of the visor to keep it in place. There are teeth on the clamp that hangs down, so they will easily grab and secure the top of the visor. You want to clamp down as close to the edge as possible. If you don’t, you lose some of your sewing area.

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You are now ready to put the hooped visor on the machine. As you can see below, the lining is out of the way.

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The hoop is locked in place and secure on both sides.

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With the CAP FRAME on the machine, your machine knows it’s on there {as opposed to the regular machine arm and standard hoops}. As you can see on the screen, it shows an image of the cap frame and it shows an upside down cap/hat. The logo is also automatically turned upside down so that it will stitch correctly on the cap. We, however, are doing a visor! That visor is hooped the opposite way so you have to rotate the logo or design to stitch normally and not upside down.

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Double check to make sure it is right side up! Mine flipped upside down again in editing so make sure it’s rotated the right way.

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I’ve assigned my colors and am ready to line up my needle and sew. I line up the lead needle and make sure it is lined up with the center mark on my visor. That way the logo will be centered on the visor.

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The visor is now stitching, and you can see below how everything looks.

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Here is another photo of how the cap hoop/frame is locked in place (on both sides).

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Here are 2 photos of the visors after I’m finished. I did a white and khaki one, both with the same logo. I trimmed the jump stitches in between the letters.

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I’ve taken the visor off the frame and will pull away the cap stabilizer which is tearaway and comes in strips.

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I usually pull away all of the stabilizer inside the letters.

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Flip the lining back up and your visor is ready!

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Here are the finished products!

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Are you either thoroughly confused, or scared to death?? It’s really easier than it seems, and I highly recommend the video! I have not used my cap frame in like 2 years, but it only took me 15 minutes or so to get it all set up and the visors embroidered.

I will work on my blog post ASAP on monogramming a regular hat or cap using FAST FRAMES! Stay tuned!!

Comments

  1. shelley hopkins says:

    Thank you so much for this blog on visors. I have struggled with visors and I wasn’t sure of the “backwards” hooping on the cap frame. But, this was very clear and understandable. BUT, I do have a question. When I am monogramming hats or visors, the brim holder on the cap frame scrubs the back of my machine. Sometimes, it even makes the frame pop off. Is this normal? I really like the design or initials down low on the cap, therefore causing it to be closer to my machine. But, I feel if it were hurting my machine or damaging to my machine, it wouldn’t let the design go that far down. Do you have any suggestions or hints?
    Thanks so much, Shelley Hopkins

  2. Thank you so much for posting. Yes, a little of both , confused and scared, but totally inspired. I was so fortunate when I bought my used 10 needle machine 2 years ago to have the total set of hat frames included and, you guessed it, they’re still in the box! The next project will be a hat for sure. You are so encouraging and inspiring in your blog, please keep blogging. I can’t wait for hats in fast frames.

    • I know the “contraption” is scary! 🙂 I don’t do a ton of hats or visors so I don’t use mine a lot, but like yesterday it was a necessity!

  3. Jennifer Watkins says:

    Thank you, thank you, a million times THANK YOU! I’ve had my 6 needle almost a year now and my ‘hat thingy’ is still in the bubble wrap! Being a visual learner, this has been a HUGE help! Now I can get busy on some visors/hats 🙂

  4. Angelique says:

    your timing couldnt be better! I have had this machine for several years but have been afraid to open that cap frame box. I have an order for several hats and was going to give it a try this week! So, do i HAVE to use cap backing or can i just use a heavyweight tearaway?

  5. Love the video. When I do hats I would love the initials to be
    More than 2″. Could you tell me if this is possible. It dont recognize
    Over 2″ on the hat hool.

  6. Lynnette Holland says:

    Thank you so much for posting this. Im looking forward to getting started on the hats.

  7. Rita Wahl says:

    Thank you for such a great video! I did 8 hats using my PR600 & the framing set. I was quite anxious as the hats were from my friend for a special occasion. They turned out great. I have one question though – how do i see where the 1st needle will start? I lined up the hat on the hoop using the re.d lines while it was on the frame still. Then when I put it on the machine I just hoped for the best. My single needle has a placement button for the first stitch but if my 6 needle does, I don’t know where to find it Thanks again!

    • You would need to line up the “lead needle” with the center mark on your hat. The lead needle is always in line with the bobbin arm of your machine, and it’s the needle left of the threader. I always pull the needle all the way down to line it up. If you turn the knob on the back, it’ll come all the way down.

  8. Cindy Cauthen says:

    I’ve been doing caps and was wondering why you can’t hoop the visor like you do a cap?

    Thanks.

  9. Debbie L says:

    Thank you for your tutorial on the visors. I had tried to do them with the cap frame and it would not go far enough down to catch the top of the cap in because I was hooping like you would a cap. I can’t wait to go home and try this way you have showed us. You are my lifesaver. I googled and searched the internet and could not find any help on hooping a visor. I just stumbled upon your blog looking for something else and found the cap and visor.

  10. Hi Rosemary! I just got found your blog and I am in LOVE! As an embroidery newbie I’m trying to learn all that I can and your blog is so helpful! Question, when you’re monogramming your baseball hats what size font do you use? And is there a standard size font that you generally use when monogramming the left chest of ladies shirts? Thank you so much! ~Lindsey

    • For baseball hats, I think I did like 2.75″ tall?? You kind of have to get your hat ready and see how much room you have to work with! Ladies shirts – I would play around w/ it and maybe print your monogram and place it on the shirt to see if the size seems right. I do that A LOT!!

  11. Rebecca Dasilva says:

    I love this blog – I have successfully made 4 visors now. yahoo – now I need to make some samples to put in my shop to sell.

    Wanted to ask where you got your visors and if you are happy with the quality – I got some last week that I don’t love – I just want a good quality cotton visor.

  12. Can this cap frame be used with a brother pe770 or is it only used for Multi thread machines? I have seen the hat hoops on various websites but this “contraption” looks like it would work so much better. Thanks!!!

  13. Suzy Allen says:

    Thanks so much! I struggled with this too and you made it so easy with all the pics!

  14. Thank you for these instructions, I have a 10 needle machine and have done several hats with my cap hoop, and was asked to do some visors, I called the vendor where I purchased the machine and cap hoop, and asked about whether I could monogram visors using the cap hoop. They were not sure that it could be done. So I immediately went to the internet and tried to find a way to monogram visors, Fast Frames, is what I was told. By by seeing this blog I KNOW I can monogram visors using my cap hoop. (oh, in the meantime, I purchased the fast frames). Which I am sure they will be used as well. Very helpful instructions!

  15. I usually do not make comments but I just had to thank you for this incredible post. I can not thank you enough for enlightening me on this topic. We have the exact same machine and I have had SO many problems with hats in general, and the visors I tried all came out horrible!! Well, now that you have taken the time to demonstrate so beautifully for us, I am certain I will have no problem.
    I will try to post a pic when I do my next one if it comes out good as a thank you for the time you spent showing me this method. Thank you thank you thank you!!!

    Melina

    P.S.
    My website is still under construction.

  16. Cudos to you!!!! A great tutorial. I’ve been wanting to do a visor for the longest time. Now, thanks to your great tutorial, I can! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!

  17. Angie Flynn says:

    I sure have struggled with trying to figure out how to do this. Then I came across your tutorial and it was like a light went off. So simple yet it is absolutely perfect.

    Thank you so much. You cannot imagine how happy I am right now.

  18. Thanks so much for the visor tutorials. You have made this and other things so much easier!

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