Sunday, March 21

Creating Patterns using your computer

Have you heard? Amy O'Neill Houck and I have squares on the brain.  Granny squares! Lately, I find myself thinking of squares while skating along the river and I think of them at night while on my way to sleep. At first, I tried outlining patterns of squares in Excel and I tried sketching them on paper, but I felt like I wasn't seeing how the pattern would really work out once I put all of those squares together. So, I figured that I could either crochet up a heck load of squares then arrange them into different patterns or I could just stitch up a few then work the magic on my computer. By taking just one photo of each square I could map out a bunch of patterns and work out my color scheme at the same time. I showed Amy and she said that I should blog about it. So here it is.

I started with a few squares, they can be squares of solid colors or a combination of colors. You can use a standard square, like I did,  or a traditional granny square or you could even try this fun technique with almost any shape, including hexagons and triangles.

To start, take a photo of each color motif and then upload them to the computer. Next, copy and paste them into MS Word, Adobe Illustrator, or almost any photo or paint program. In this example, I used Adobe Illustrator, but I've used Word just as successfully.

Here are 3 solid colored squares. You don't need to be fussy or perfect, this is just a "sketch" on your computer.

Once you have your basic motifs in your program, start copying and pasting each color and move them around into different patterns. Here are a few patterns that I came up with:

 I started with a simple pattern like this one.

 Which can lead to this.

Next, I took 1/4th of the original image above and copied and pasted over and over to create this design. I think it might need a full border of purple squares as a frame.

Here are a few more ideas. There Amy, I did what you said to do...again.


Unknown said...

This is a brilliant idea. Thanks for sharing! I'm going to get started on this immediately!

Fruitful Fusion said...

What a great idea! It beats laying all the squares out on the floor! :)

Eris Devotee said...

You KNOW I love this!

Shibaguyz said...

so smart… LOVE this idea!

Miss Julep said...

You are brilliant! I LOVE this!

Ellen Bloom said...

Welcome to Quilt World, Julie!

Norah said...

Great idea, Julie!

Beth said...

Brilliant! I love these colors together.
I suppose you could also play with changing the colors in the photos with Photoshop, to see how totally different colors would look combined together!

Annette said...

OMG. This will beat Ravelry as a time-eater. So fun!