What did I stitch on that quilt? Quilt Documentation

Posted by on June 20, 2017

shutterstock_258683114-[Converted]

Have you ever been in this position?  Someone says, “I really like the quilting pattern and the thread you used on Susie’s quilt!  Can you do that on mine?”  You think you remember what Susie’s quilt looked like, but you’re not 100% sure what quilt pattern was used and have no idea what brand or weight of thread was used.  This happened to me a couple of times when I first started quilting and had done some close family and charity quilts.  You notice I said a couple of times….

There are some basic things that I have found to be important to me for quilt documentation in case I want or need to duplicate a quilt stitching design look.

1.  What are the dimensions of the quilt?

  • Comparing quilt dimensions helps me determine if a re-create is feasible.

2.  What quilt stitch pattern did I use?

  • Is it free hand?  What style of free hand stitching; meander, swirls, loops, etc.?  What did I use for reference marks to keep the free hand stitching evenly spaced and sized?
  • Is it a paper pantograph?  What is the name and size of the panto?  Where did I start the panto; was it a full stitch out in the first pass or did I do a partial row stitch (stitching off the top/bottom of the quilt)?  How far did I start and end off the side edges of the quilt?  How many rows of design are down the quilt?
  • Is it a digital stitch design?  What size is the individual design?  How many repeats?  What is the spacing between the repeats?  Where did I start the design – off the side edge, over the top edge?  How many rows of design are down the quilt?
  • Is it an edge to edge pattern or a block by block pattern?  Are there borders?  If multiple borders, is each one stitched differently or were they combined?

3.  What thread/threads were used? (Defining information for the top and the bobbin.)

  • What brand of thread was used?
  • What type and weight of thread was that brand? (Cotton, poly, silk, metallic, 40, 50, 100, etc.)
  • What needle brand and size were used with that thread set-up?

There are several ways to document this information.

4.  It can be done digitally.  Create a document form to write in all the information and also add digital pictures.

5.  It can be documented by hand in a notebook.  Include all of the written documentation and add a sketch of the quilt design.

  • If print pictures of the quilt design they can be added to the notebook.
  • Clear, plastic 3-ring binder sleeves can be used to store quilt documentation notes and printed pictures.  The 3-ring binder size can grow with your documentation or you can use divider tabs to section your creations into years or categories.
  • I often sketch stitching designs on graph paper and I like to include those sketches with the quilt documentation.  The plastic sleeves work well for this.

The documentation process doesn’t take that long once you decide what information you want to have for reference.  And, it can save time and frustration if you want to re-create a previous masterpiece!

sondra-r

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Why do my patterns always come up the wrong way in computerized quilting boxes?

Posted by on November 13, 2015

It’s the way you have selected your pattern box. You either did not select the left most point of the base line or you did not go counter clockwise. You need to re-select the pattern box and start over.

In digitizing software you are designating the bottom of the pattern just by drawing it right side up. Then when you import the pattern into the quilting machine the computer knows where the bottom is. You have to tell the computer somehow how to place the pattern into the pattern box so that the bottom is where you want it. Therefore, select the left most point of the baseline first and work your way around the pattern box counterclockwise.

Pay attention now because here is the tricky part that can fool you.

As quilters have triangles around the edge of the quilt the baseline of the triangle will stay at the left most point of the base of the triangle. That first point you are selecting will rotate with the triangle around the edge of the quilt. Sooooooooo—the bottom triangle first point will be appearing to be on the left. The triangles that are on the right side of the quilt will have the first point at the bottom. (Still is the left most point of the baseline). The triangles at the top of the quilt will have the first point on the right. (Still it is the left most point). The triangles on the left of the quilt edge will have the left most point at the top.

Take a look at this quilt and see.

SCREEN1

SCREEN2

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The Green Lock Icon Explained

Posted by on April 6, 2015

What is the green lock icon for in the scale menu in computerized quilting?

If you click on the EDIT menu and then click on the SCALE button you will notice the green lock button in the upper right hand corner of your screen.

SCREEN

Lock button is in the upper right corner of this screen.

The slider bars on the top and right hand side are for manual scaling. The two slider bars are locked so that the pattern will stay in proportion if manually scaled. In other words, if you tap on the plus button (of either slider bar) the pattern will grow bigger but stay in a triangle shape as you see it here. If you click on the green lock icon, the lock will turn gray and is off. Then if you tap on the vertical slider bar plus, the pattern will grow bigger only in the vertical direction. If you tap on the horizontal slider bar plus, then the pattern will grow horizontally but not vertically. Sometimes we call this morphing a pattern.

Normally we click on SMART SCALE and answer ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to the proportion question. Every once in a while we will want to change a pattern and have a little more control. For instance, you might want to change a feather wreath into a feather oval.

If you ever have lost the SMART SCALE button from your machine screen, it means that you’ve selected the pattern box coordinates incorrectly. If you are in a hurry, you can use the manual slider bars to scale. Although normally we would go back and re-pick our pattern box and then re-select our pattern and correct the problem.

The green lock icon turns back on just by tapping on it. If you go into SMART SCALE mode it will automatically turn back on.

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How do you reuse the same pattern in computerized quilting?

Posted by on February 2, 2015

 Take a look at this screen and you will see three selections in the drop down box under the pattern box button.

  1. Add Pattern Box is used when you are going to set a new location for a new pattern design. (Note: remember to select the bottom of the box first so your pattern will come up the correct direction.)
  2. Adjust Current really means Adjust the Current Location of the last pattern you had in the screen view.  For example:

If you wanted to use this scroll triangle that is in this picture for more than one triangle in your quilt, you can simply by adjusting the location of this pattern. Here are the steps.

  1. Get the pattern in view on the screen. If the pattern is back a ways in your screens simply tap on the previous arrow to find it.
  2. Click on the home button.
  3. Click on the Pattern Box button.
  4. Click on Adjust Current (location).
  5. Follow the prompts for selecting the pattern box.
  6. Edit you pattern if needed.
  7. Stitch.

3. Remove Current Box is the last selection and if you click on this, the last box will be erased and if it had a pattern inside that will be gone also..

PATTERN

If you have a quilt and the blocks are not all the same in size you have a choice on the scaling. You could scale each pattern to fit each of the different sized blocks or you could scale for one of the blocks and keep the pattern you first sized so that all the designs are exactly the same size. Sometimes keeping the same sized pattern all the way through will make the irregular quilt look more balanced.

 

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10 Reasons We Like the Tape Measure Feature on the Quilt Magician

Posted by on June 9, 2014

The tape measure icon is found in the main tool bar across the top.

QMTM1When you click on the tape measure, you will see the next screen where you can begin to use this feature.

QMTM2QMTM3

When you click on the ‘Set Start’ button, the Set Start button changes into a ‘Stop’ button and all the numbers clear and start at 0. The tape measure is reading the needle location, so put the needle where you want to start measuring from. When you get to the final distance just click on the Stop button and the measurements will stay on the screen. To clear the measurements just click on the Start button again and it will be ready to measure again.

QMTM41. The accuracy of the measurement is .01 (hundredths). Therefore if you are measuring pattern placement, you can get a more precise measurement than a standard tape measure which would be measured in 8th of an inch increments.

2. Easy to use. Click, roll, and click.

3. Features a diagonal measurement; a needed feature for borders.

4. You can measure the last space at the bottom of your quilt as the pins roll around for perfect panto placement. When the pins roll around measure and divide the space by the row height and spacing to see how you can manage the last couple of rows and their sizing. This way you will not end up with half a row of design.

5. Finding the center of a block. Take 2 measurements from opposite corners (in an X shape to find the exact center) —works even if the block is not cut and pieced exactly correct.

6. Can be used with the channel lock on. For exact quilt width measurement, use pattern view to get out of the tape measure feature.

7. Creating block areas for whole cloth. If there is no block area, you can create one by measuring and placing chalk marks on the corner points.

8. Measuring space between laser light pantograph rows. As a rule of thumb the standard measurement between pantograph rows is ¾ of an inch.

9. Checking and double checking detailed placement of pattern.

10. Side border repeats and placement. Once you have the measurement of the repeat on the first or top border, you can then create boxes down the side of the border and place one repeat in there at a time. No need to rotate your quilt for borders once you learn to use the tape measure repeat placement.

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