Posted in Quilt Questions

Writing Quilt Patterns

Do You Want to Write Your Own Quilt Patterns?

Learn to create your own Quilt Patterns

I am sharing the two most useful tools I use for writing quilt patterns.


1. I first design my quilt using the Electric Quilt 8 program (EQ8).  It is THE BEST program out there for creating quilt patterns.  I’ll show you a little video tutorial of what it can do.

Using EQ8 to write quilt patterns
A Glimpse at creating ‘X Marks The Spot’ pattern

EQ8 cover


2. After I design my quilt, I use Adobe Illustrator (AI) to write my patterns.  (UPDATE as of May 2020: I have now learned to use InDesign and I MUCH prefer it!) I actually used Microsoft Word to write my first pattern.  It worked, but it wasn’t pretty.  I didn’t even know how unattractive and clunky it was until I really started doing my homework.  I will never turn back from using AI.

Using Adobe Illustrator to write quilt patterns
Inside AI working on a first draft of ‘Cafe Tiles’ Quilt Pattern


I have thought about creating an online course for how to write quilt patterns.  I’m thinking it would include step by step  tutorials on using EQ8, AI specifically for writing quilt patterns, and some business tips on marketing, printing patterns, and the like.

Would you be interested in a course like that?  If so, click HERE and I will get in touch and see if there’s enough interest and share some more ideas with y’all.

Do you have other questions about writing quilt patterns?  There’s SO much to share on the topic, but if you have questions, leave a comment and I could even write another blog post answering some more specific questions if there’s an interest.

And if you are a quilter not interested in quilt pattern writing, that’s great, too!  We need both the pattern writers and the pattern users! 😉

If you are interested in writing quilt patterns, I highly recommend looking into the EQ8 program and using that 20% discount while you can.

Happy quilting and quilt pattern writing, if that’s your jam.

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19 thoughts on “Writing Quilt Patterns

  1. I would LOVE more information about using Illustrator for writing quilt patterns! And how you take images out of EQ8. I am pretty good at designing in EQ8, but how and what to use out of it to write a pattern would be great! I am actullay just finalizing the first pattern I would love to write!

  2. Hello. I have had EQ 8 for over a year and have not done much with it. A class and group community would help me get started and find out if pattern design is something I’d like to pursue!

  3. Yes Please! I’ve been designing old school with pencil & graph paper so I would love to learn EQ & AI. Also, I want to compliment you on your website. Very clean and uncluttered.

  4. I am interested in learning about writing patterns, if only for myself. I need to get the ideas out of my head. 🙂 But the thing that I’m most curious about is quilt math: figuring out how much fabric is needed for each part of the quilt (individual block pieces, sashing, backing, borders, binding, etc) without having to do test blocks or lay paper pieces out on fabric.

    Is that something EQ8 does for you?

  5. I use EQ8 and think it’s great but I made my first 2 patterns on Word and it was not pretty, I have sold only 1! So I am very interested in learning about how to make it look more professional. I have tons of pattern ideas in my head and on paper but need to get them into the modern age….

  6. Thanks for this- it’s super informative! I’d love to write a pattern one day. Curious question- Do you have pattern designs in your head that you then bring to reality using the quilting program or do you play around in the programs to create your quilt designs?

    1. Thanks for reaching out! And this is a great question. I have tried different things as far as pattern tested go. For my latest pattern, I reached out to a handful for people who’s work I like and asked if they would be willing to test the pattern. I do not compensate testers. But I do repost their work and share their quilts on social media and on my blog. Let me know if you have more questions about that.

  7. I just took a quilt I designed to my quilter and she told me about your post! It’s on my bucket list to write a pattern someday! I have EQ8 and AI – I’d love to see what you’d offer for a class! Thank you!

  8. I’m very interested and have just signed up. Hopefully there enough interest to make this happen. I was wondering though if I need a MAC, especially for the AI program. I didn’t know I’d need that in addition to EQ8 but I’m willing to do what I have to. Thanks!

  9. I am really interested in both options and I have signed up for info. So I am very curious why the need for a vector based program such as Illustrator to write the pattern instructions. Why not using something equipped for text and images such as InDesign?

    1. If you know indesign, I would stick with that! I don’t know indesign, so I use the next best thing, in my opinion. AI.
      I’ll be in touch with those interested in a pattern writing course, too. 🤗

  10. This is the push I needed! I have only been quilting for a few short years but keep dreaming about designing my own patterns. I received a Flourish planner for Christmas from my sister in law and have been planning how to design and share patterns. One in my mini goals has been researching EQ8 and have been waiting for a sale or code and this was it. Thanks for sharing Elizabeth and hope the course has enough interest.

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