Earlier this week, I wrote a Block Design Tutorial for how to hand draft quilt block ideas. Today, I want to introduce you to a free computer program called Inkscape that creates vector based images. I have been using Inkscape to design on my computer for a few months, and I really like the crisp PNG images that can be created for tutorial images, block design, and quilt design.
For the video tutorial below, I am working with the 2015 Fabri-Quilt New Block Blog Hop color palette and 2 inspiration images of rope swings within Inkscape to create a 12-inch by 12-inch (finished) quilt block. I hope this gives you some idea of how to interact with the Inkscape environment and helps you decide if it is a software tool that would be beneficial for you to learn.
Using a screen shot of the block design from Inkscape (above), and knowing that each block represents one half inch, each color can be broken down into the following pieces (remembering to add a half inch to each dimension for seam allowances):
- Lapis Blue
- (2) 3-inch by 8.5-inch rectangles
- (1) 6.5-inch by 8.5-inch rectangle
- (2) 1.5-inch by 2.5-inch rectangles
- (1) 1.5-inch by 12.5-inch rectangle
- (2) 1-inch by 8.5-inch rectangles
- (1) 1.5-inch by 8.5-inch rectangle
- (1) 2.5-inch by 12.5-inch rectangle
A little creative cutting / thinking will show that it is possible to get all of the required pieces of the Lapis Blue out of a Fat Eighth of fabric:
If you are interested in spending more time getting familiar with Inkscape, I highly encourage you to join the Quilt Design a Day (QDAD) Facebook group. Within the group there are some Getting Started Challenges meant to help walk you through learning your software, along with a set of Tips for Inkscape Users. Also, the description for Inkscape as given in the QDAD group is below:
Inkscape – vector-based design program for Macs, Windows and Linux. a semi-clone of Adobe Illustrator. It’s public domain and user-developed which means its developed by random people for free. That means things aren’t always optimal, but it works well if you want to try a vector-based approach. There is a small learning curve if you haven’t used vector software before. We have tips for Inkscape users in the Files section of the group.