Help Choosing Embroidery Set Format

Article Posted 20 October 2017

Ashlea Stoodley - Bunnycup Embroidery

What format does my home embroidery machine use?

When you purchase an embroidery machine, each type of embroidery machine reads a design format that is specific to the brand of embroidery machine.  The file format is denoted by the three letter extension to the file name for example, a file named ChristmasBears.pes.  The ending of the file name, pes, is the file extension.  You need to make sure you use the correct extension for your embroidery machine, otherwise your embroidery machine will not be able to read the design file.  If you loaded a Janome file, for example a file that ends in .jef, then it typically would not be able to be read by a brother machine which requires pes format, or in other words, a file that ends in .pes.

The following table list design formats and the corresponding machine brand:


Machine Brand








Husqvarna Viking


Janome/New Home




Baby Lock, Bernina Deco, Brother


Elna, Janome/New Home, Kenmore


Viking Design 1


Husqvana Viking


Husqvana Viking




Due to ever changing developments in embroidery machines, some formats used by different brands of embroidery have been updated over time.  For example, while SEW format is listed above, this format has been replaced in newer Janome machines with JEF format.  Some embroidery machines can read multiple formats as well.  Some embroidery machines will read multiple formats, and some will read older and new formats for that machine (for example a machine that reads VP3 format is also likely to read VIP format, but older Viking machines that read VIP format will not read VP3 format which is the new format for Husqvarna Viking machines).

If you are unsure what formats your machine reads after reading this, your embroidery machine manual should document which formats of machine embroidery design formats that it will read.  

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