Friday, May 8, 2009

Woo Hoo, it's EQ!

OK, I'm embarrassed. I got EQ6 for Christmas, but with all the gift quilt sewing, wedding attending, doctor's appointments, etc. that was going on, I never loaded it on the computer. Until yesterday. And once I got past the Vista crankiness, it went well.

Now comes the learning curve. You see, I had Electric Quilt back in, oh, 1989, when it was still DOS based. I used it some, but it had quirks and was not easy to use without a mouse, so I just let it slide when we upgraded computers and never thought about it again.

Last Christmas, while casting around for gift ideas to fulfill my husband's requested "What I would like" list, I thought about the new EQ and that maybe it would be good for auditioning ideas. (I was using the draw function on Word, which is surprisingly effective, but not optimal.)

So, I asked, he bought, and it went on my desk to be installed. Then life intervened. So, yesterday I looked at the box (again) and said "Let's get this thing on the computer while the laundry is being done."

To put it mildly, it's improved. I made up a few designs without ever looking at the manual. I wouldn't call it intuitive, but once you wrap your brain around its world-view (which, I admit, is hard if you've been using drafting or other drawing programs, because it doesn't work AT ALL like those) you can whip out stuff in the blink of an eye.

Take this little example:
This is the "Raspberry Truffle" pattern from the May/June issue of Quiltmaker. Now, they made it in pink and brown, but I've made enough pink and brown quilts for a lifetime and I wanted to see what it would look like in another colorway. They also made a variation in the French Farmhouse line by Renee Nanneman for Andover Fabrics. It was love at first sight.

Cool, huh?

I'm going to call it "Blueberry Pie with a Lime Twist".

That little mock-up only took me about an hour, and that includes poking the wrong buttons and fussing.

I'm going to enjoy this. (But I gotta read the manual.)


paula, the quilter said...

I have used EQ to determine the sashing and sets for BOMs. I take photos of the finished blocks and import them to play. I do the same with fabrics. Yes, I know you can download fabric swatches from the internet, but my stash is quite old and those aren't available unless I make them. Have fun!

Tanya said...

I once borrowed my friends EQ software for the trial month and had a great time. I designed to my heart's content and thought I was a real whiz... until I realized that I was playing so much with the software that I was not longer sewing!