Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Quilt Design Wizard

A couple of weeks ago I contacted The Electric Quilt Company. I told them I was starting to design patterns and would love to test their product. They sent me the Quilt Design Wizard to try. I had never heard of this program, but I thought it would be fun to try.

The package came in 2 days, that impressed me. They get 1 star for that.




I was very excited about this new software to play with, but I had 2 quilts to finish so play time would have to wait. Fast forward 2 days and it was finally my time. The installation was easy and fast. Another star for that.

There's a bunch of videos to watch to help get you started. From choosing the layout of the blocks to printing it there's help there if you need it. These are short videos and took no time at all to zip thru them. There's also a Learn tab at the top that has step by step directions if you forget something. I find these helpful. Another Star.

Then I felt confident enough to see what I could design. I have been working on my second pattern and wanted to see it on the screen and see what this program could do for me. Here are the steps of quilt designing with The Quilt Design Wizard.

1. First you choose the layout for the quilt. There are 4 different layouts to choose from. All I have been working with so far is horizontal and on-point layouts, which are 2 of the 4 choices (the other 2 are medallions). You can also choose the quilt size, and the great thing is if you want to make a twin size quilt all you do is click twin size and it figures it out for you. You also choose if you want sashing and how big you want it and the block size you are using. The choices for block size are limited to 8", 9", 10", 12". But that can be changed in the 'tailor this layout style' drop down menu. I found the layout to have a lot of ways to customize your quilt...another star.

2. Now onto Borders. there are 6 different styles to choose from that can be tailored to whatever size you want. I know it seems like I am giving away stars like Craizee, but thats who I am.

3. What I was really excited to do is chose the blocks I will be working with. There are over 200 blocks all sorted by their types. There are also projects you can download from the Quilt Design Wizard web site. The new quilt I am working on is made out of bowties. For some reason this block is not in the database, although there are a lot of great blocks choose from. On to plan 2...designing another quilt, just for fun. Choosing another block was easy as putting it in the quilt. You can add the blocks one at a time, all at a time or to every other square. You have complete control over what goes in each square. You can also rotate or flip one, all or every other block.

4. Another fun part was choosing the fabric for the quilt. There are over 3000 fabric choices from solids to big prints. They might not be exactly the fabrics that you have but with 3000+ choices youi will get close enough to give you a good idea of what the quilt will look like. And like the blocks you can put fabric in 1 block, all or half. I like the control I have over the fabric and the ease of changing the fabric in the quilt. Star!

5. Then you are ready to print the quilt. Everything you need to know to make the quilt is available in the print function. You can print a picture of the quilt, yardage info, rotary cutting directions, foundation piecing or template design information. I found this the most helpful part of the process. I would give this part 2 stars if I could.

Here's the quilt I designed. I am working on a quilt for my oldest son and this is one idea. What do you think?

So you are probably wondering if I would recommend this program to you. If quilting is your hobby then this would be a fun tool to have. The $29.95 price point is very affordable. Its also a good 'stepping stone' tool for new pattern designers. The only think you are limited by is blocks, but they are adding more free blocks every month that you can download and the 200+ blocks in the library will keep you busy for a long time. Knowing the yardage needed, rotary cutting directions and a picture of the quilt design really helps and is well worth the cost to have that.

Now for some fun! The Electric Quilt Company has given me a Quilt Design Wizard to giveaway! Here's how to enter
You must be a follower of Craizee Corner, but you don't get an entry for that, it's just a pre-requisite.
For your entry go to The Electric Quilt Company's Project of the Month archives and tell me which quilt you would love to be able to make. There's a lot to choose from going all the way back to 2003.
Simple as that! Mr. Random will pick a winner on Saturday, October 8th.

Sha :)

38 comments:

  1. Morning! April surf and sky looks like an unique quilt to try! Thanks for the chance to win this program. It actually would be a great to have means to create and see before you cut!

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  2. Thanks for the great review! I've been wondering about this product as a gift for my sis-in-law -- looks perfect. I already use EQ7 but would love to win it for her. It would be fun to win the May quilt, What a Catch, for a little person I know.

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  3. I like the July - Summer Sun project. Thanks for a chance to win! Wow... what a great prize! Of course I am a regular follower!

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  4. I like Romantic Walk Through the Garden table runner. Tablerunners are quick and easy patterns to make. Thanks for the giveaway. I am already a follower :-)

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  5. I love your design! It has great movement. I think I would choose the "Snow Day" quilt from November 2008. Thanks for a chance at such an awesome prize!

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  6. Great review! Thanks for sharing! I love Surf & Sky, April 2011. I'm a follower and would love to win!

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  7. Your wizard sounds really useful. I'm a follower of your blog and I would choose July 2007 Scrappy Sunflowers :)

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  8. Dang! Do you know, I got this for Christmas and had been a bit frustrated because I couldn't figure out how to choose something other than a horizontal basic quilt? I didn't even realize that you could choose under style! Thank you for teaching me something new about my software!

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  9. Oh, what an awesome win this would be! I've never heard of it, and it's so affordable, it might get added to my Christmas list. The patterns I liked (I narrowed it down to two patterns) are both from 2009, and they are: April Blooming Beauties and November Merry Quilting. As always, thanks for the opportunity to participate in your giveaway.

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  10. I like Blooming Beauties from April 2009
    Thanks for the giveaway!

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  11. Do I have to choose one?? You throw in any fall and I go nutz! This october's happy haunting, last septembers pumpkin patch! How am I supposed to choose?hehe I think I would do the pumpkin patch it could go for sept, oct, and Nov! Thank you for sharing with us!

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  12. I love this one: http://www.quiltdesignwizard.com/qdw/free/2009/09/2009_09.asp

    It's sunflowers, squares, and triangles - everything I need for the perfect quilt! :D

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  13. I love "Let's Go Fly A Kite" very cute! Lucky you having a free one to try! I'd love one of these!

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  14. I would have to make "What A Catch!" the one for May! You make this program sound so easy, I love how reader friendly you describe it!

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  15. I really like the summer sun quilt from July 2011. :)

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  16. Hi Sharon, what a fantastic giveaway. I would love to make the "Beautiful Blooms" quilt from August 2008. :)

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  17. April Surf and Sky is a good looking quilt pattern, just like yours! I need user friendly software so please enter me into the draw.

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  18. Sweet Valentine is wonderful! This program sounds really user friendly, I'd love a chance to win.

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  19. I am follower and would like to make "What a catch".

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  20. What a cool quilt! I just finished the happy quilting quilt along that did the wonky cut blocks. I really like them! It's cool to see this program lets you do those.

    I looked at the archives - really like this one:
    http://www.quiltdesignwizard.com/qdw/free/2010/04/2010_04.asp

    I really like the diamond block. I would probably play with the colors a bit to make the star pop out a little more but I love the movement in that quilt!

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  21. I like the Summer Sun quilt. It has such bright colors. Thanks for the giveaway.

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  22. April 2010 Summer Signatures

    Such a great program! Someday I am going to treat myself to one of these:)

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  23. I've got quite a few favorites - Jan/Feb 2007, Feb/Dec 2008, Sep/Nov 2009, Jan 2010, & I think Sep 2011 would be fun to do as well.

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  25. I think I'd like to try the Surf and Sky pattern. I just adapted a quilt pattern, it was more work than I expected, and was thinking, "this would sure be easier if I had a computer program that I could put in the quilt size and it would tell me the size of the blocks I need to cut". And voila! here it is! If I don't win, this will have to be on my purchase list. Thanks.

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  26. I love the Romantic Walk Through the Garden, Sweet!

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  27. I'd like to make the Summer Sailing blocks - but put them all together into a table runner!

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  28. Wow that was hard to choose, but I have to say that Winter Blues (nov 10) captured my eye. Such gorgeous colors and I love the geese!

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  29. April 2007 - Sweet Summer Sun. Lovely quilt

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  30. Looking for suitable runner with fish theme so "What A Catch" would be the one for me, thanks Sha!
    Poppyinpink(I am a follower but Google isn't playing ball today:)

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  31. I really like the Surf and Sky Looks to be a challenge though

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  32. You have convinced me that this is an awesome program - thanks!

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  33. Wow looks like a great program. I love how your quilt turned out! Thanks for letting us know about this and their website as well. What a great bunch of patterns to choose from. I really liked Scrappy Sunset from Aug. 09 and Fall Fun table runner from Oct. 09. Maybe I can squeeze one more project in?

    Thank you and The Electric Quilt Co. for the giveaway and a chance to win.

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  34. I would make the February Clover pattern! I follow your blog!

    Lovely patterns you are producting by-the-way!

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  35. producing...it was supposed to be producing...LOL

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  36. I like the spring clovers quilt! (Great review of the software)

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  37. Thanks Sharon for the review. I went way back to November 2006 I love An Old Fashioned Winter.

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What do you think? I'd love to hear from you :)