That is the question posed to me by one of my sit and stitch friends when I told her I was going to be blogging about EQ Mini. She was not familiar with the software and was not sure what it did. Maybe you are in that boat, maybe you have heard of Electric Quilt or of quilt design software, but never ventured into that world. I thought I would start at the beginning and offer my input on the EQ Mini design software.
Do you design your own quilts?
Do you scribble on a piece of paper or mark up graph paper with colored pencils? Or it is all in your head and you try to do the calculations as you go. Do you use traditional patterns but wished you could see how your fabrics would look all stitched up before you cut into them
Electric Quilt Mini is computer software that helps you put those paper design ideas or thoughts in your head into a computer program. It lets you virtually design a quilt with built-in block ideas.
If you have the beginnings of an idea, Electric Quilt Mini, using easy to follow step by step tabs, walks you through logical steps to design any size quilt, table runner or other quilted items.
Why do I want to put my design in a computer program before I sew?
Here are 8 reasons to use Electric Quilt Mini design software before you start to sew:
- With EQ Mini, you can decide how big you want your quilt to be by the number of blocks, sashing and borders.
- You can try things out before cutting into that precious, special fabric you have been hoarding.
- You can even download fabric swatches from the manufacturer to see how the fabric would look in your quilt. CLARIFICATION: EQ Mini only allows you to download the free manufacturer’s fabrics included in the free fabrics of the month from the EQ site. If you want to import scanned fabrics or other manufacturer’s fabrics, you will need to upgrade to EQ7. I often use the solid color fabrics to mimic the fabrics I am using if i don’t find what I need in the included fabric libraries.
- You can print out block templates, rotary cutting instructions or paper piecing templates from the program.
- You can print out fabric yardage estimates so that you can purchase the right about of fabric or if what you already have in your stash is enough.
- You can try different color ways for your quilt before you make it.
- You can resize the blocks to make any size quilt you want
- You can just plain see what your quilt is going to look like before you make it.
Helpful Tips about EQ Mini
The software includes built in lessons. Stop, seriously, print these lessons and work your way through them. They will really help you to familiarize yourself with the software.
The online help and customer support are second to none, they take it seriously and are very helpful.
Take your time, ask questions, responses have a quick turn around from from customer support.
Do you want to design your own quilt block that is not in the quilt block libraries, It is time to upgrade to Electric Quilt 7. The Electric Quilt Company provides an upgrade path from EQ Mini to EQ 7 that is affordable and available when you are ready. Start with EQ Mini to get the basics and then move on up for more features and functions.
Do you want to design and digitize embroidery to add to your quilts? Consider upgrading to EQ 7 and adding EQ Stitch which provides a basic embroidery digitizing program.
Important Things You Need to Know before buying EQ Mini
- You must know how to use a computer, mouse, keyboard and printer.
- You will need a computer or laptop with the minimum requirements to run the software.
- You will need your computer or laptop to have access to a printer.
- You will need to load the software and then activate it before you can use it.