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We came across this blog post by Rebecca Deming Rumpf and it inspired this lesson.

Sew one block. Then quickly preview your finished quilt. Sounds impossible? Try this:

Scan the block

You only need a small, low resolution image. So if your scanner lets you choose a size and resolution make your block about 3” x 3” and 72-75 dpi. Save the scan somewhere you can find again.

Create a new project

Open EQ7.
Name it: any name of your choice.

Import the block image into EQ7

In EQ7 click WORKTABLE > Work on Image
Click the Import Image button > browse to find and select your scanned block image > click Open.
(We could have imported from the Photo Library. But if you import from the IMAGE worktable you can use the Twist tool to create rotations to audition in your quilt.)

Crop if needed

Click the Crop tool.
Drag the crop box from top-right to bottom-left so only your block is within > then click the green check above. (You want to crop out any white background left by the scanner lid showing behind the block.)

Click Add to Sketchbook button.
Save rotated versions of the image if needed

(Optional – do this only if your block is not the same on all 4 sides)
Click the Twist tool.

  • Click the Rotate 90 degrees button on the top of your screen.
    Click Add to Sketchbook
  • Click the Rotate 90 degrees button, again.
    Click Add to Sketchbook
  • Click the Rotate 90 degrees button, a third time.
    Click Add to Sketchbook
    You’ve just saved the block in 90, 180, 270 rotations, plus unrotated.

Design a quilt

Click WORKTABLE > Work on Quilt.
Click QUILT > New Quilt > Horizontal.

Adjust the layout as desired
Click the Layout tab.
Number of blocks: Your choice, but make it an even number – 4, 6, 8, etc. for horizontal and vertical.
For size: Your choice.
Sashing: 0

Set the block photo into the quilt layout

Click Layer 1.
Click the Set Photo  tool. Your block scan, and rotated versions, are there.
Use CTRL+click (PC) or Command+click (Mac) to set the first scan in all spaces at once. Voila! Preview your quilt.

But if working with rotations, you can try them out.

Q: Why can’t you just use the Rotate Block  tool to rotate?
A: The Rotate Block tool rotates blocks. The Rotate Block tool will not rotate scanned images (photos).

Have fun setting various rotated block scans (optional)

Click Block 2 (the first rotated scan) in the palette

Use ALT+click (PC) or Option+click (Mac) to set it. It sets into every other block space.

Continue with Block 3 and Block 4, setting different scans different places to create different patterns.

You’ll be previewing variations of your finished quilt!