Hi Annie, I'm afraid you have just come up against a problem many new computer or embroidery machine users come up against at some time. File extensions and where they are used.
When you first own a computer you are faced with learning a whole new language, and what is worse, it's all accronyms, exe,pdf,doc,txt, having PC, embroidery machine and software creates a requirement to learn a variety of new languages. At first you feel like your brain has packed its bags and gone on vacation, so here's what I hope will be of use to you. Forgive me if I am teaching you how to suck eggs, but I have no idea how much understanding you have of file extensions.
Image extensions, these are the most commonly used by folks with embroidery software. JPG, GIF, TIFF, PNG, BMP, WMF,EMFthere are others but are mainly for printing purposes or propriety types native to the image programs being used.
Embroidery formats, now here's where confusion reigns supreme, every embroidery software has its own native format, which cannot be stitched! they need to be converted to stitch formats, and every different make of embroidery machine has its own propriety stitch format.
To make it possible to auto digitise, the propriety software programs enabled the import of image files, but only a Digitising software can convert those images into a native format of the software used, then convert that into a stitch file.
I own and use Embird's basic suite, but it cannot convert an image file into a stitch file, it can only convert one propriety stitch format to another one. Lets say you have downloaded a Pes design, but your machine will only stitch a Jef format, Embird will convert that Pes format to a Jef format for you. However as you have only the evaluation license, you can't save stitch format conversion files.
To convert images into an embroidery design you need digitising software, it doesn't actually convert the image, but maps areas of the image, and then assigns stitches to those areas mapped. The image still exists in its original format, and you have an embroidery design, normally one that will leave you dissapointed.
The only way you are going to be able to create your own designs is to purchase Embird Basic plus the Studio Plug in, to create the lettering you will need to purchase the lettering plug in. There are lots of so called auto digitising programs on offer, but believe me they wont create designs nearly as well as a full digitising software where you assign the shapes, stitches, density settings stitch types and angles for the stitches to follow.(manual punching) . I own several digitising programs, Embird plus its Studio plug in and photostitch plug in is just one of them. It's a nice program, offers a lot for the price, but I have to be truthful here, I have found since the the latest upgrade, Janomes Difitiser pro MB v3, is so easy to use.
view these Janome lessons
Embird lacks a few of the functions that Janome has, and has a steeper learning curve, but there are lots of Yahoo Embird groups offering help and support, it is still a program I would recomend to anyone thinking of starting tolearn to digitise if the budget is restricted.