Stitching in Photoshop

I’ve been admiring all the cool renderings. :open_mouth:
I rarely get to do any because it’s just faster for me to send an Illustrator line drawing as a pdf and get pullovers with real materials faster than trying to render my line drawings to look real.
I’ve been dabbling with photoshop for sometime now but only for the outsoles. I bring my vectors in PS but the fit stitching is missing. Large stitching that I’ve created a brush for comes in OK, but I have to put it on a separate layer or pick every single one of them. Any suggestions? I’d like to try some rendering to update my portfolio.

I just drag and drop fron Illustrator to Phototshop. It comes in as its own layer and as long as the Photoshop image is the same size as the Illustrator line art there should be no problem. it will ask you to vectorize or rasterize the image when you do but you can do either. When the stitching is on its own layer you can use the emboss filter on the selected stitching and change the layer settings of the stitching to overlay and you now have dimensional stitching…

Hope that helps

that’s what I do too.

Scott Robertson’s method:

Go to your brush settings and set it to “dashed”. The create a path along the line you want to stitch and stroke it on a new layer, followed by emboss.

OK, 2 things:

  1. I do my fit stitch by changing a line in the Illustrator stroke window and check “Dashed line.” I find it easier to work with the stroke dashed lines because I can adjust the stitches/inch, stitch lenght and spaces between stitches and pick the round cap. The Stroked dashed lines don’t come into photoshop, I only get a plain vector in PS. Unless someone knows how to bring in stroked dashes, I will need to create custom fit stitching brush because I don’t know how to adjust the spacing between the dashes in the Brush library.

  2. The Drag and Dropping into PS just does not work for me. I will get only pixilated work. PS does not give me a choice for pixels or paths. I have been putting a 14 X 8.5 in. rectangle around my Illustrator work and CtrlC, CtrlV in PS to get vectors centered in a PS. I find it convient if I change an upper but keep the outsole because it pastes in the same location or if I later choose to bring Vectors into Rhino and do 3D instead of a PS rendering.

Is it possible to create a brush in PS that will stroke my plain vector line Like in Illustrator? I’ve been searching for a similar menu.


There are Brush settings in Photoshop that have a “dashed” option? Where? I must not be looking in the right place. I can change the diameter and hardness of the brush. I don’t know what “mode” does. Do you have to load a dashed brush?

Sorry forgot about the details, but he demonstrated it when he made adjustments to brush settings. Maybe he created a custom brush. I got to find out how too.

Like said before, do the dash in ai, easy to make it square edge, round, thickness, space etc… Also easier to modify it once you do it in ps and don’t like it, you still have the original modifiable info.
Drag it into photoshop, will come over pixelated. When you’re drawing it in ai, have an underlay of the ps file so you’re doing it 1 to 1. Line em up in ps, hue/sat filter, pillow emboss, piece of cake.

To monkey bunny:

I never use this because I don’t do any path stuff in ps (too used to old ps versions when you couldn’t). But if you’re having problems getting the ai to stay paths, in ai, go to prefs - file handling and clipboard: look at the bottom box, clipboard on quit. Most likely the “copy as pdf” is checked…click the other box, “aicb” and “preserve paths”. That will make it so the ai drag and drop will stay as paths.
Don’t know why you’d want to keep the paths in ps though unless you want to make changes on the fly and stay in the ps document maybe?
Good luck, hope this helps.


From what you described, I must be working backward. I create simple thumbnails on paper but I draw everything in Illustrator. I don’t have a PS file to use as an underlay to line up in illustrator. Except sometimes a scanned a sketch. But once I have an idea of the upper pattern, I immediately start drawing lines in illulstrator to stay in proportion. It’s the PS rendering that I’m trying to create from all these Ills files that are basically ready to fill with color and shading and textures.

My prefs are set as described but I can only bring paths in to PS by copy paste, but not by dragging. Dragging only get’s me pixels I guess that’s normal and I am able to work just fine.

The problem with bringing my files in pixels is I have some over lapping. and it dosen’t keep things on separate layers as I had in illustrator. For example, if leather is on top of a meshed fabric. I generally keep the meshed as a whole piece on one layer and the “back stay or quarter” (shoe terminology) on another layer in front of the mesh, but filled to cover the mesh. So selecting is tricky. Keeping the black outline also makes it look cartoony. I never used apha channels before so I use paths to make selections. Sometimes things change in the pattern and using the rectangle box which allowes me to “paste to front” in PS and I can make changes on the fly.

In PS I do the basic, fill and shade each part of the shoe and add textures, emboss, make hue/saturation masks to change the accent pieces but I would like to add stitching at the end. Maybe my methodology is not translating to yours. But I would like to know, if it is possible to stroke a path in PS with a dashed brush in Photoshop.

BTW I love your 2D Illustrator to Photoshop Tutorial especially your rant. It’s so true! At my work, 2 of the 3 senior designers are old school and they often have negative things to say about using the computer. Mainly, it takes too long… The third designer uses Corel and shades using gradients. I’m alone but I 've learned from exploring and reading yours and other great tuts posted. I want to become faster but when things become rushed my PS practice comes to a halt.

Thanks! :smiley:

I get it. You’re not working backwards.
But if you want some stuff plain, like a flat pattern piece, quickly hide the stitching in ai before you bring that fabric layer into ps. Then bring over the ai stitching seperately and it’ll be in a new layer. Then you’ll be able to lose the stitch or change them later without affecting the fabric layer underneath. I’d just make sure I left a small marker out near the border that I’d bring over with all of the different layers so that I can align them perfectly.

I figured it out. I bring my stitching in as pixels and they are on the top layer.


You better appreciate this.

Totally and completely!
Thanks molested_cow, I can’t wait to try it!

another way i have been doing recently -
for really polishede renders really as a bit time consuming

scan sketch and trace in illusrator making each section as a coloured block rather than a line drawing, this allows easier selection without having to expand the selection and getting overlaps. you can also give basic colours and just do a single shading layer over the top.

When you have your basic rendering in PS, copy the image at the correct size to illustrator and do all the stitching as a dashed line. them copy the line work over, it should be the correct sizer and just paste in correct place. then if you want pillow emboss the layer to give a more 3d ish effct.