While I do not like a cluttered interface (and Essentials definitely is anything but), I think that the addition of a couple of buttons would do no damage. I use the hoop rotation and background color all the time and don't think that either is really a 'preference' but more of a button like flipping a design or rotating, etc. I would like to click to rotate the hoop and click to open the window to choose background color. And, in the preferences, I'd like to be able to choose the preferred thread brand so that I do not have to click 'preferred' each time I open a new design.
And, as long as I am dreaming, I'd like for the thread coloring window to stay open while changing multiple colors. That is, a click on a color would instantly recolor the design with the thread brand window staying open - multiple color choices could be viewed for the same part of the design. Then a new object or color could be selected from the design and a new color selected from the thread brand window, etc, until the design is complete. It takes many clicks to open the window, resize it to view more colors, choose color, and click ok to see the results only to reopen the window, resize it, choose again and close the window in order to see the results.
I love the program and am really enjoying its features. Keep up the good work.