Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Wednesday WOW - May 26


Well, the Hoffman project is finally started.  At least there's a head!

Monday, May 24, 2010

EQ6 and Fabric Selections

Judy at Virtual Quilter has been nagging encouraging me to play with using fabric in EQ6.  I needed to take some time to learn more about the fabric libraries first.

The default fabric selection is kind of tame for me, but I recently learned how to change the default selection, plus how to load a "custom" collection for the project file.  EQ provides a free fabric collection monthly and there are loads of luscious fabrics in each one.

Where to start?  One of my fabric colors is brown.  And one of the monthly collections was - surprise - browns!




Wish I could remember who these fabrics are by.  I just wrote down Winter Wonderland. 


And this one is Jungle Brites.  I like this.

The magic wand tool will take the colors you chose and map them to the fabric available in the project.  This can result in some less - er - eye-popping combinations.  Like this hot pink/bright yellow colored example.


Don't need sunshades for this, do you?


Or for this one using baby fabrics.

I love fabrics and I can see I am in for many hours of tooling around through the collections.  Oh me, oh my!  Where will the time come from?

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Wednesday WOW - May 19

This is what I had planned to work on today:


Instead, this is what I found when I returned from a quick trip to town:


Looks like Sarge has found the source of our latest water leak.  He has a plan, so today I did some lessons in EQ6. 

Monday, May 17, 2010

More Layouts in EQ6

Something I've been working on learning to do in EQ is create - and save - useful custom layouts. 

Recently I explored the irregular layouts that come in EQ6.  There are some very interesting and useful layouts there, but of course, I am not satisfied.  I want more!

Now, creating a custom layout is not real easy, but it's not real hard either.  The hard part is creating one that can actually be used for something!  I have many examples of really BAD layouts, but I don't think I'll share those!!!!

Once I figured out some tricks - like lining up blocks with the margin - and came up with a decent layout, my next challenge was to save it so it can be used again.  Turns out that's not so hard at all!

So after some "by guess and by gosh"  I came up with this, based on a photo of Esther Aliu's Red Delicious quilt and filled with the same half-square triangles you've seen before.


This is where some of the magic in EQ comes into play.  Let's move some of these to make it look more interesting.


Not bad (if you like yellow!).  Let's try it with the four-patch.


and the mosaic:


or Square in a Square (one of my favs)


Now I might be ready to really use this in a "theme" quilt.  In March I was playing with shamrocks.  Did you know you can use the heart shape to make a shamrock?  How about this?


I like it.  Yeah, I would want to adjust the appliques so they don't stretch or flatten so much, and maybe some adjustments would help those flying geese.  But I think we are starting to see something doable here.   And I'm having lots of fun, even if these designs and fabric never meet!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Why We Read Directions

I worked on this month's Thimblerries block today.  Nice block, great instructions, and the two blocks went together really fast.  Until . . .


. . . I turned the page!  There was supposed to be a "right flower" and a "left flower."  As in, the fence posts face the other way.


Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Wednesday WOW - May 12


I'm playing exploring in Electric Quilt some more today.  Oh, and I picked up the Thimbleberries block for this month.  These are starting to look like there might be a fun quilt at the end of the journey!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


This is the Traveling Page I made for Johoanna in April.  Johoanna's theme is "The Goddess Within."

P4190004When I started thinking about a design for the Goddess Within, I was thinking of something very spiritual and indicative of our inner nature – perhaps something shared among all women. As I did my research, I came across some wonderful web sites dedicated to identifying your inner goddess and maintaining a spiritual connection to the world. These were very inspiring. One of them led me to an on-line list of gods and goddesses. On this list, I found Caffeina.

Caffeina captured my imagination like no other name on these lists. I tried to move on to something more meaningful, but Caffeina would not let me go. I realized that I was already a sometime worshipper of this goddess and once acknowledging that, I was hers irrevocably!

There is no clear agreement whether Caffeina is an ancient goddess or of more modern origins – known as a “found goddess.” I will share what I found and let you make your own decision.

According to the Goddess of Random Thoughts!, Caffeina is imagethe . . .

patroness of coffee, tea, and other caffeinated drinks or foods. Caffeina is the Roman goddess of energy, stamina, and determination. Usually portrayed as a beautiful woman rising from a coffee cup, the goddess Caffeina gives clear thought, energy and creativity.

There is a nice legend about the origins of coffee here (scroll down), and a more "scholarly" essay here.  If you wish to revere Caffeina, follow her directions in the Charge of the Goddess Caffeina. 

I made the front of this page using simple patchwork, appliqué, and hand embroidery. I used EQ6 (my newest favorite toy!) to help plan the layout.


On the back, I used Shiva paint sticks and a stamp of the goddess Venus to embellish a piece of batik. I used eyelash yarn and a beaded border to finish the edges.

I'm now working on the May page.  So far, so good.   I think you'll like this one, too!  And check out what everyone else has been doing on the Story of the Traveling Page.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

The Flowers in EQ6

In my last post, I showed you a quilt using an irregular layout, some pieced blocks, and some flower applique blocks.  The colors were pretty ho-hum, though.

By waving the "magic wand", I looked at a LOT of color options . . . changes in hue, intensity, tint, etc.  Here are just some that caught my eye (keeping in mind that my eye tends to be a bit - er - strange!):




Wouldn't this be pretty in a Princess bedroom?


. . . or perhaps you prefer Goth.



Oh!  We lost a color in the background!  In fact, I found myself with an all-white quilt by the time I finished!


Did you notice how the appliques all changed colors, too?  With this last one, I asked the program to map colors to the fabrics in my worktable.  I kind of like this one myself.  Although the fabrics are more pastel than what I usually work with, the flower colors are unusual (blue leaves?  I guess so!) and have just enough brightness to satisfy my color craving.

Alas, I am not skilled in applique, and I suspect that long off-grain seam would completely defeat me!  This one will probably remain virtual!

Friday, May 7, 2010

EQ Layouts

Among the many things you find in the EQ libraries are quilt layouts.  So, if you prefer, you can start with blocks and put them together to form a quilt, OR you can choose a layout and add blocks to it!

I've seen lots of patterns lately with irregular layouts.  Since I don't do traditional very well ;-) and I really like this look, I decided to take my experiments to the irregular grids.


Here, I've just filled the grid with half-square triangles.  It's super easy to do that with a single key-stroke!  I looked at a few different grids before choosing one to explore further.




How about this one?  Not too impressive with all half-squares.  Let's change it up a bit.


Some 4-patch blocks do help, don't they?


Or maybe a 9-patch mosaic.


How about a combination?  Interesting.  And it takes longer to export the picture and save it than to make those changes!


Ah, but the irregular grid is really for showcasing fancy blocks - either applique or pieced.  Doesn't this look nice?  Hmm.  Not sure I like those colors, though.

Heh, heh.  We already know how much fun playing with the colors can be, don't we?  I'm feeling ornery, though, so I'm going to make you wait for my next post to see what happens! 

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Wednesday WOW - May 5


Reviewing the fabrics for Hoffman Challenge and what beads might go with.  Not much else.  Weather is too nice to stay in the basement all day!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Playing Schoolhouse Games

Yesterday I showed you an interesting quilt I designed in EQ6.  The program has some nifty tools for playing the "what if" game.  I could play that all day and not get anything else done! 


So, once I decided I liked these 9-patch stars as alternate blocks, I thought "what if they are a different color?"  This pale blue looks pretty nice, huh?

Then I took the magic wand to this quilt.  Wait until you see what I found!!


Can you say girly girl?  Can you say dark glasses?!!


Ah, much more soothing.  But, maybe I don't want soothing!


Hey!  If it's purple I'm there!!


Schoolhouses at midnight!  These colors do appeal to me.  Maybe I will experiment a bit with the intensity of the stars.  What do you think?  What's your favorite color combination?

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Do You EQ?

Earlier this week, Judy at Virtual Quilter issued a challenge to anyone who has Electric Quilt to . . .

"...use Electric Quilt to design some quilts, and use them on your blog if you have one, to fill in those days when you don’t have anything to blog about."

In a moment of weakness, I (publicly!) accepted her challenge.  What was I thinking - right?  Let me tell you then.  I finally got EQ6 not long ago (told Sarge it was what he was getting me for my birthday.  Teehee!)  I've had some fun piddling around in it, but have not settled down to seriously design quilts that could actually be made some day.  Or shown to anyone else, for that matter! 

Time to change that!   EQ7 is coming out next month and I just know I am going to need the upgrade!  Maybe I should start acting like I know what I'm doing, huh?


This is one that I did just as a play-time piece.  In fact, the file is named "Playing."  LOL!  I love houses and there are really a lot of them in the EQ6 library.  This quilt, however, has so much wrong going on!


So I settled on the classic "schoolhouse" block and started to see what we could do - my EQ and I.  This doesn't excite me much.


This is a bit more interesting, but those alternate blocks don't do anything for the overall design.  Let's try something else.


Hearts are better, but kind of predictable, don't you think?


Stars make sense.  Pretty busy, though.  Let's try a different star.


Oooh.  Now, I might even make something like this!   I didn't stop there, though.  I did some color play as well.  I'll save that for the next post, though.  Fun, fun, fun!