When I first began quilting, I would purchase and use other quilters’ patterns. I did this because I had no idea what I was doing. I also did this because purchasing a quilting pattern took the “thought” out of the planning process of making that quilt — because someone else had already done it for me!
As I began progressing as a quilter, I started taking bits and pieces of design elements that I had seen in other quilts and putting them into my own quilts. I used graphing paper to start my sketches and then eventually transferred them to a plain white sheet of paper. I began putting all of my designs into a notebook. The notebook began GROWING very quickly. The only problem was, I spent more time planning my quilts than I did actually making my quilts. I did not like this. I not only had to make the initial sketches of my quilts but then I had to transfer them over to a cleaner piece of paper. Then, I had to make a fabric pattern and do way too many calculations to determine how much fabric I needed.
I quickly began to realize that this method of planning would only work for me for so long. If I ever decided I did not like an element of the quilt I had designed… I would have to start completely over on all my sketches and calculations. I really wanted the freedom to be able to design intricate and beautiful quilts quickly, efficiently, and with real “vision” of what the quilt would end up looking like.
I knew that with most forms of sewing and crafting, there were software programs to assist in making things easier. I have a Cricut and I know that many people find using the Design Studio to be incredibly helpful. So, I began researching different quilting softwares. I was VERY picky in the software that I chose. Why? Because I wanted the BEST software on the market. Software that would fit my every quilting need.
I ran across The Electric Quilt Company and began researching their software, EQ7. After reading about it and checking out some of the reviews — I decided that I wanted to give this one a shot.
I was absolutely THRILLED when The Electric Quilt Company agreed to work with me for the 2012 Holiday Gift Guide here at Wee Share. When it finally came in the mail — I ripped open the box as quickly as I could. I feel bad for my sweet husband because when I got the software in the mail I was supposed to be cooking dinner. Well… I immediately installed it on my computer and did not even look away from the computer for the remainder of the night. Needless to say, he ended up cooking dinner.
Learning how to use this software did take some time. The design options are ENDLESS with this software, so, it’s understandable that it takes some reading and practice to become a master at it.
Let me tell you — the things that I am sharing with you are not even scratching the surface of what this software has to offer. Here are just a few of the things that you can do with the EQ7 software:
- You can create quilts using the beautiful pre-made blocks embedded in the EQ7 software.
- You can create your OWN blocks and motifs! (Which I LOVE)
- You can add text appliqués to your quilts. This feature uses the fonts that are already on your computer. Why do I love this? Because you can download new fonts and use them in the software, too! The possibilities are endless. Then, when you print the template for the text it creates a full pattern complete with seam allowance. This is wonderful for creating your appliqués. The EQ7 software makes it easy and painless!
- You can create quilts with your favorite images by tracing.
What is my favorite feature of the EQ7 design software?
You can download and use the fabrics that you are planning on using in your quilt. I love this because it gives a complete look at what your quilt will look like in the end. It is amazing.
For the purpose of this review, I am going to walk you through how I have converted one of my baby changing quilt patterns from my pencil-and-paper sketches to a professional EQ7 pattern. Here is a photo of my sketched pattern:
It only took about 5 minutes total to make the complete pattern for my baby changing quilt with the EQ7 software. As you can see, this is just a computerized version of the sketches that I had made in my book. I am currently in the process of converting all of my patterns into EQ7 patterns.Another really great feature of the EQ7 software is how it tells you EXACTLY how many patches and the fabric requirements to create the quilt. Here is an example of the fabric requirements for the baby changing quilt:
As you can see, the EQ7 software tells me exactly how many patches I need of each fabric to make the quilt. It also tells the fabric yardage as well. So, this software lets you create custom quilts. Then, it takes all of the messy fabric calculations out of the picture. That way, you’re left with plenty of time to enjoy quilting!
Here is a picture of a quilt pattern that I have been working on for a few different review purposes. In this photo, you can see exactly how incredible the EQ7 software is. [Notice the fabrics!]
I have recently taken up making t-shirt quilts. Before having the EQ7 software, making unique and customized patterns was very difficult. But now, I am able to see the finished quilts before I even cut the first t-shirt! The coolest part about designing my t-shirt quilts on the EQ7 software is that I can put actual photos of the t-shirts on the pattern! Here is an example [pictured below].
My cousin was in a sorority while in college. I am making her a t-shirt quilt to incorporate all of the t-shirts she accumulated over the years in college. I LOVE that I have the EQ7 software for this. Why? Because she and I have been able to work together to design a completely customized quilt that goes with her style and sorority theme!
So – if you are a quilter or know a quilter — head on over to The Electric Quilt Company. This software is SO beneficial for creating quilts. So whether you purchase it for yourself or as a gift — the quilter in your life will absolutely love it!
I have been waiting ALL MONTH to announce this giveaway. The Electric Quilt Company has agreed to host a giveaway here at Wee Share!!! One very lucky reader will win their very own EQ7 software! Thank you!!!
- Head on over to the Electric Quilt Company website and check out their products!
- “Like” The Electric Quilt Company on Facebook
- “Follow” The Electric Quilt Company on Pinterest
- Check out The Electric Quilt Company YouTube site!