We had a tech support question this weekend about drawing a certain block. After answering it I found I had a good list of tips on how I was able to draw it, so I thought I’d share.

Let’s say you want to recreate a block with a bunch of triangles, diamonds, parallelograms, trapezoids, etc.

  1. Along the block edge, count up all the squares (this is A).
  2. Count up the remaining triangle hypotenuse thingies (this is B).
  3. Using either the 7-10-7 or 41-58-41 (A-B-A) method. Give all your A’s and B’s those values. This will give you the number of snaps you need.
  4. Set up a block and those snaps that will work with the units you come up with.
  5. Draw a line across the block and use Partition to find where your lines should go.

When I was trying to find example blocks, the only ones I could think of readily were those from Judy Martin.

In the first example, there are 6 squares and 4 triangles. So you can use a grid of either 82 [(6*7)+(4*10)] or 478 [(6*41)+(4*58)] . I would probably pick the 82 one and make my block size 10.25 inches.

Copyright Judy Martin

In this second example, there are 4 squares and 2 triangles. You can use a grid of either 48 [(4*7)+(2*10)] or 280 [(4*41)+(2*58)]. Here you could do a 48” block with snaps set to 48 and just draw on the inch marks.

Copyright Judy Martin

For more difficult blocks, use Partition to figure out where to draw the lines. Once you get the first few parts drawn (usually 1 diamond, and 1 triangle), you just need to duplicate it all.

Using a lot of copy & paste to get the lines to go to the correct places, and a lot of Add to Sketchbook, you finally come up with the finished drawing.

I work with Snap to Grid and Snap to Node on until I have trouble snapping. Then, I turn off Snap to Grid and just leave Snap to Node on.

I hope this helps you next time you want to draw something with these types of pieces.

For those of you who would rather just print & sew, both these blocks are from Judy Martin’s Stars & Sets program. It has over 200 star blocks, where I had to use this technique a lot to be able to put them into EQ. That quilt design software is stand-alone, but works with EQ5 and EQ6 if you have either of them.