Sunday, August 31, 2014

Tech Sunday - Quilt Path Home Screen

When you open Quilt Path the Home Screen comes up.  One of the most common question is when do I use the icons below Design & Create and when do I use the ones under Select & Sew.  

The idea is that you will be doing design work under Design & Create, save it and then use it under Select &Sew.  Both Pattern and Quilt work well this way.   Let's start off with the one that does not fit that plan - Pantograph.

I only use the Pantograph option under Design & Sew.  For most of my quilts I use Basic Mode, so the first thing I want to do is change the mode.  Design & Create - Pantograph let's me do this.  I tap the button, it ask me to set my safe zone and then takes me directly into Pantostacker, where I can change the Mode and then select the pattern.  And within a couple minutes the machine is quilting.  If you use Select & Sew -  Pantograph, when you tap on the icon it immediately asks you to Select Pattern.  Once you do that, you are put into Pantostacker, then I change my mode to Basic and have to Select Pattern again.  It does not ask me to set my safe zone until I send the file to Quilt Motion.    I detest doing things twice.  So have to Select my Pattern, change the Mode and Select my pattern again is a deal killer, for me.  I only use Design & Create - Pantograph.  If you are using EZ Mode, there is no real difference, so you can use whichever makes the most sense to you.

Now for the two areas that I think are the reason for the two headings.  When you go into Design & Create - Pattern, you are going into PatternCAD.  PatternCAD is the drawing and design tool.   This is where you create or edit patterns, so the heading makes perfect sense.  When you go into Select & Sew - Patterns, you are going straight into the blocks setting part of Quilt Motion.  You are using the patterns that you, or someone else, created.   So, if you have a block pattern that you purchased, and have imported, you would go into Select & Sew - Pattern and get straight to quilting.  If you want to create an original pattern or import one you just purchased, go into Design & Create - Pattern.  You can import in either, but when you import PatternCAD comes up with the new pattern in it, so I just go there to begin with.  Either way will work.

Design & Create - Quilt is where you lay out an entire quilt or part of a quilt.   It is where I work on border designs.  Sometimes I will bring patterns in to see if I alternate them what secondary designs I get.  It is a Design tool.  Once I get what I want, I can either sew it or save it.  If I save it, it is then available for me to select when I go into Select & Sew Quilt.

I could have made this post most much shorter by just saying you Design under Design & Create and you get right to quilting when you use Select & Sew.  Except when you are Pantograph quilting, because they are the same, except for the order they have you do things.  But really, what fun is that?

Saturday, August 30, 2014

APQS Raleigh Grand Opening

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Tech Sunday - They all look the same!

Because I am getting ready to host the first Quilt Path Camp and I have already had classes with multiple tablets in them, I feel I need to point out, all our systems are identical.   You think you know where you set yours down, but then you are trying to find something on it and it because apparent that it is not your tablet.  I actually have two Quilt Paths, one is mine, the other is the showroom's.  So I came up with a way to mark the systems, so that I would know which is which.  I also wanted to be able to take the markings off, in case I ever needed to.  Not that anyone will be getting either of them away from me any time soon!  

I used Washi tape, which sticks really well, but will come off later.  And let's face it, it is pretty.  Then I used my label maker, which is always loaded with clear labels, to put the codes on the systems.  I am completely addicted to clear labels.  If there is a 12-step program for that, I would get the promotional flyer and mark it with a clear label.  My husband has been known to hide my label maker.  He said he thought he might come home and find labels on the dogs.  I then pointed out that they have collars on with their names on them.  

It is hard to see in the picture but the Showroom system has a blue and white chevron patterned tape. The Pink tape I used on mine is much easier to see.  I am not sure why I needed to put #1 on both of them.  Could be that I am fantasizing about getting more systems.   Can't you just see a showroom full of them.  All happily quilting away...  

If you are bringing your tablet to a class you really want to mark EVERYTHING.  Your tablet, your plug, the stylus, the charging brick, the USB.  There may be as many as 13 identical systems at Quilt Path Camp.  You want to make sure that you go home with the one that has your designs on it.

I have an assortment of Washi tape that I will share if you come to class without your system marked.  Unless it is your stylus, because mine is missing in action.   I swear that thing has legs!  

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Tech Sunday - PatternCAD - Transform Group

We are back in PatternCAD exploring the Pattern | Edit feature.  You can get to PatternCAD from the Home screen by choosing Pattern under the Design & Create heading.  
You will need to either draw a quick design or select a pattern before tapping Pattern | Edit.
 With Nodes showing, tap on the Transform Group button.
 There are 3 ways that you can transform the group: Stretch, Skew & Warp.
The stretch option allows you to stretch the pattern.  Tapping and dragging the circles in the corner will make the entire design larger or smaller.  Tapping and dragging the blue squares will make enlarge or reduce the directions that you are working on at that moment.
Now let's go back to our original design and look at the Skew option.
The Skew option allows you to transform the design by tapping and dragging the circles in the corners.  It will affect the area of the pattern that corresponds with the circle.
 Now let's look go back to the original pattern, one more time, and look at the Warp option.
The Warp option allows you to warp the pattern using the 4 corner nodes and the additional 8 side blue squares. Each of the corner circles and each of the blue boxes moves the area of the design it corresponds to independently and will apply its effect to that portion of the pattern.
You can also switch between the option as needed to get the design to transform into the shape you desire.

For a printable version of this post, please click here.

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Sunday, August 10, 2014

Tech Sunday - PatternCAD - Curved Lines

Today we are exploring drawing curved lines, or drawing a line the way you want it to appear.  From the Home screen, under the Design & Create heading, tap on Pattern.  On the right side of PatternCAD you will want to select Line under the Pattern | Draw feature.  Then select the Node Spacing button.  
The smaller the number in the Node Space field the closer the nodes will be to each other.  I tend to work at 4 or 5.  Much larger then that and I tend to not get my lines as smooth as I want them.  I drew the hook in the above screenshot with my mouse and have not done any editing on it.

There are three more buttons on this screen that we have not discussed.  Remove last will remove the last Node you drew.  Undo Remove, will restore the Node you just deleted.   Continuous Lines is for when you are drawing a design and you want what you are drawing to connect.  It is an awesome tool and we will use it a future lesson when we start doing design work in PatternCAD.
If you do not see the red Node circles, you will need to turn on Nodes on the top left of PatternCAD.

Now we are going to go into Pattern | Edit.  Tap on Select and then Select All.  Your drawing should now have solid red node circles.  The nodes that are solid red are what will be effected when you do your editing.  For instance, if I want to smooth the entire line that I drew I would now tap smooth.
I can do this as many times as I want to get the effect I desire.  But what if I don't want the entire pattern edited.  I don't want the hump on the left edited.  Then I will use my stylus or mouse to tap and draw a pink box around the area that I want excluded.  
If the nodes are selected this will deselect the nodes.  If none of my nodes were selected, to begin with, it would select only the nodes that are inside the box. 
In this case the nodes were selected to begin with so you can see the area that was deselected.  If I wanted that areas to be the only area selected I could tap the Select Inverse button and it would then look like the screen shot below.
If I tap the Select All button and the tap on Simplify it will remove unneeded Nodes.
I can also Unselect all and then draw my pink box around just the very last node in the center of the hook.  Then if I tap and draw it will make the space between the last node and the node before it longer.
To really understand what an action will do, you need to play with the feature.  By playing with the edit feature now, you will have the basics that you will need to understand it when we go on to drawing our own designs and editing them.

For a printable version of this post, please click here.

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Tuesday, August 5, 2014

We are open!

We are soft opening the APQS Raleigh Showroom today.  YAY!!!!!   Still working on the Grand Opening plans.  Watch this blog and emails from APQS for more information on the Grand Opening celebration.  

Our address is...
8521-101 Cantilever Way
Raleigh, NC 27613

This weeks hours are: 
10AM - 4PM Tuesday - Thursday.  

Our normal hours will be Tueday - Friday 10-4 and the 1st and 3rd Saturday 10-4. We will also be available outside these hours by appointment.  

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Tech Sunday - Arcs and Parabola

I am about to get on my math soapbox.  I have an issue with Quilt Path's use of the word "Parabola" to describe the shape it is letting us draw.  By definition a parabola is symmetrical.  What Quilt Path is letting us draw is asymmetrical.  It is actually a Non-Parabolic Arc.  This is just proof to my High School Trigonometry teacher that I was paying attention.  I think she knew that anyway, since it was one of my favorite classes.

Now that I have gotten that off my chest, we are going to continue our discussion of the Pattern | Draw and Pattern | Edit features in PatternCAD.   The two items we will be looking at today are Arc (which for the record lets us draw a Parabola) and Parabola (which allows us to draw a Non-Parabolic Arc).  I know, I really do need to get over it!
When you use either of the features, you need to have your Node spacing option off.  You can tell it is off because there will not be a number in the Node Spacing field.  Then tap on arc and draw a line.  Once that is done tap on Parabola and draw a line.  Notice that they look the same in Draw mode.
Tap on Edit and you will also see that they look the same in Edit mode.  Now for the fun part.  Tap and drag the blue box.  This will allow you to curve the line.  Notice that no matter where you pull the blue box and let go it will make a symmetrical arc.

In the screen shot above I actually let go of the blue squares in about the same position on both the Arc and the Parabola.  Notice that the Parabola distorted into an Asymmetrical Arc.  That really is the difference in the two options.

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