As a quilter and machine embroidery individual, I learned very quickly that I could do so much more with my computerized machines if I knew how to use the computer and all the different programs that support our quilt designing and machine embroidery designing. I had already retired from my career as a dental hygienist of 40 years to now become even busier with my career of teaching sewing and all the related topics.

Recent Posts by Yvonne

EQ8 Lessons With Yvonne–Curved Blocks Create Movement

Posted 07-15-2018 by | Posted in: EQ8 Lessons with Yvonne   Favorite Posts  

Your quilt may have a focal point where the eye rests (like in a medallion quilt) or it may have movement where your eye travels over the entire quilt top to discover many pleasing features built into the design.  Movement can be created with color repeats and with curved elements that cause you to travel over the quilt to take in the entire project.  In this blog we will discuss movement created with curved blocks.  There is more than one way to create the illusion of curves and movement.

The easy way to create curves is to make a block with applique on it.  Placing the applique elements in a somewhat random placement that is slightly curved will create an overall curved design when added to the quilt layout.

This does not really looked curved.  When placed onto a quilt layout and then having the blocks rotated with the symmetry tool, you can begin to see a curved design.

Another way to create a curved block is to draw it as an Easy Draw block using the Arc tool to draw curved lines.  This tool can be a little tricky because sometimes your arc will be in the wrong direction because of the way you are dragging your mouse across the block.  Simply hit the space bar on the keyboard while drawing the arc and the curve will flip to the correct direction for you.

Once you complete drawing your arcs you can color the block add it to the sketchbook.   Click on the quilt worktable icon on the upper right side of the screen and select a layout (default is for a horizontal layout).  Use any layout you want for this.  I chose to set my blocks into a traditional horizontal quilt layout.

After setting the blocks I can use the symmetry tool to click onto the quilt layout worktable  up to 16 times to see different variations of the layout and add the ones I like best to my sketchbook.

My most favorite  curved block patterns to make utilize the powerful built in tools in EQ8.  I love this way to design because I don’t have to do so much work.  The program has all ready aided me with the block information I need to be creative with curved piecing.

Open the program and click on  the block worktable icon on the upper right side of the screen. From the menu bar at the top of the screen click on the new block tab and then select the pieced block type.  In the box block style select the poly draw block option.

NOTE:  There is an excellent tutorial on how to use the PolyDraw block on the EQ website.  It can be found here .  https://support.electricquilt.com/articles/draw-a-pieced-block-polydraw/

From the Polydraw Block box, select the polyarc tool and the click on the arc layout option in the box.  The layout design will appear on the worktable.

This tool will draw the shapes for you while snapping to the background lines of the layout.  You must complete a closed patch for each segment.  You will know the patch is closed properly when it shows a solid color area against the background layout..

Begin by double clicking on a corner of the patch then click on each corner once to draw the patch outline and double click on the point of the area where you first started drawing to release the PolyArc patch drawing tool.

Create a patch for an arc of the design.  Now while it is still selected, clone>rotate>drag to the next position.  It will snap into place for you.  This is a great way to make your patches.  You can always draw each patch individually if you choose, but the tools in EQ8 make it quick and easy.

Continue drawing and cloning and rotating your pieces until the block is full.

TIP  You can draw over several blocks at once to make larger and smaller segments.  I don’t like to have a seam line into a corner so I make the corner patch one large piece to avoid the seam line in the corner of the block.

Add to sketchbook 

Once all the patch elements are drawn to your satisfaction, click on the color tab at the top of the screen and click on colors of your choice then click on the patch to fill the color elements.

Add to sketchbook

Click on the quilt worktable icon at the upper right side of the screen.  Choose whichever layout type you want to use and add your block to the layout.  Add more interest by using the symmetry tool to see up to 16 different variations of your new layout.

Add to sketchbook 

Be sure to play with the tools for the layouts and the blocks to see what wonderful curved elements you can create for your EQ8 quilt design.  WARNING–This is addicting!!

EQ8 Lessons with Yvonne–Whole Cloth Quilting

Posted 05-20-2018 by | Posted in: EQ8   EQ8 Lessons with Yvonne   Favorite Posts  

Whole cloth quilting can be accomplished by stitching free motion, in the embroidery hoop, or by printing templates and transferring the design to the quilt top to stitch through.  The choice is yours.  EQ8 aids us in this adventure of whole cloth quilting by providing stencil blocks in the Block Library built into the program. The EQ8 program gives us a visual of how the whole cloth quilt will look when stitched.  You can always change the layout once you start working on the quilt material itself.  For instance, on the quilt pictured above, I would not create a stencil for this wavy line border.  I would most likely use the serpentine stitch on my machine at maximum width and length and repeat the rows one beside the other stitching with my walking foot until the outer border was filled to my satisfaction.  I like to use this visual reference

EQ8 Lessons With Yvonne–Designing with Dresden Plates

Posted 03-18-2018 by | Posted in: EQ8 Lessons with Yvonne   Favorite Posts  

Dresden plate applique is a very old technique.  It lends itself perfectly to today’s machines with all their decorative stitches.  There are many blocks all ready in the library with the dresden fan blades that you can use for your particular design. Open your EQ8 program. On the opening screen, click on ‘search for block patterns’. In the BLOCK LIBRARIES box you will see under the 01 Classic Pieced section that there are 5 different sections for Dresden variations.  Click on the Dresden Four Fans section.  Click on the first image in the upper left corner.  Click on ‘Add to Sketchbook’ icon and then click on the word ‘close’ at the bottom of the library box. Since the original design is now in the sketchbook, we can edit it any way we want and add edited copies to the sketchbook without over writing the original block design. Click on the

EQStitch Sunday Stitch December 2017

Posted 12-17-2017 by | Posted in: EQStitch   Favorite Posts   Sunday Stitch  

Are you using your EQStitch to design Christmas gifts?  Adding that special touch to a design with a monogram, custom design, or unique message makes the gifts we give mean more.  It shows we thought about the receiver of the gift while designing and stitching their gift. Using the features of EQStitch, you can double check your digitizing work before you go  to the machine.  This is especially important when time is limited.  Catch your errors and correct them before spending precious time stitching away only to find you are less than happy with the results.  You can rely on EQStitch to help you immensely in the digitizing process. Open your EQStitch program. Click on the stitch worktable icon and then select embroidery as the new design type from the drop down menu. Click on the oval tool from the toolbar and select the heart shape. Move the cursor over

EQStitch Sunday Stitch November 2017

Posted 11-19-2017 by | Posted in: EQStitch   Favorite Posts   Sunday Stitch  

Those pesky jump stitches!  Not all embroidery machines automatically trim jump stitches.  The newer models of machines can be set to trim jumps over a certain length.  But, older model embroidery machines do not always trim jump stitches for you.  All machines will cut and tie off the threads when going from one color to another.  Did you know that EQStitch can help you to trim those stitches even for an older model machine? Consider text designs.  You most often stitch all the text with one color thread.  That means a jump stitch from letter to letter.  Often the jump stitches can be small and hard to get hold of to trim later.  Digitizing effectively can help with that. Open your EQStitch program. Click on the stitch work table icon. Click on STITCHING>New Design>embroidery. On the embroidery work table tool bar, click and hold the little black button at the


Posted 10-15-2017 by | Posted in: EQStitch   Favorite Posts   Sunday Stitch  

Sometimes the simplest designs have the highest impact on a quilt.  Consider the modern quilt movement.  Very little print on the fabric and very few design elements on the quilt allow the quilter to showcase the stitches themselves.  Why not make a simple applique a focal point on a rather plain quilt and highlight that applique with some embroidery stitches.  Applying the applique to a whole cloth background as an embroidery element can bring the quilt to life. Click on your EQStitch icon on the desktop to launch the program. Click on the stitch worktable icon. Click on STITCHING>New Design>Machine Applique. Click on the drawing board options icon on the project bar at the top of the screen. In the options box, click on the machine applique setting and select and ‘E’ stitch with the following properties.  Be sure to click on the ‘OK’ in the bottom of the box


Posted 09-17-2017 by | Posted in: EQStitch   Favorite Posts   Sunday Stitch  

Coloring and sketching/doodling is now seen as being a relaxing meditative hobby that aids in overall health.  Who knew??  I wanted to see if I could actually ‘sketch’ an embroidered design.  This can be a little tricky as stitches are precise with a defined type, width, length and texture.  I was able to draw something that I felt was similar to a ‘sketch’ with stitches using my EQStitch. Open the EQStitch program. Click on the stitch worktable icon to open the stitch features. Click on the tracing image tab at the bottom of the screen. Bring in an image onto the image tab and size it to the size of the hoop you will be using.   You could also use a motif image from the block library if you wanted to.  The image is up to you. Add the image to the sketchbook so it is available for tracing