When I want to create a shape or image to cut on my KNK Maxx Air, I have two software packages that I use. KNK Studio was bundled with my first KNK cutter – the “Yellow Beast”. Make the Cut was bundled with my Maxx Air. Each of the software packages has its strengths and weaknesses. When I want to create an image to be used as an illustration to be included in some documentation or instructions for a sewing project, I will use my KNK Studio software.
As an example, at my part time job at the sewing machine/quilt fabric store, I taught a class on making appliqued quilt blocks using a machine accessory that sews circles. Depending on the placement of the center of the circle and the diameter of the circle, a multitude of different patterns can be created. If you’ve ever played with a compass to draw intersecting circles or the children’s drawing set called Spirograph, you will understand what I am talking about. Since the sample quilt that we were working from had been created ‘on-the-fly’ there was on documentation as to the dimensions. I did not know ahead of time that I would be teaching the class. I quickly made some measurements, and was able to guide the ladies in making the blocks that the class time allowed. I decided that I would document all of the 9 blocks in the quilt and provide that document to the ladies that had taken the class that day as well as to have it for future sessions of the class.
I had never found a software program for drawing that I was comfortable with until I got KNK Studio (Thank you, KNKUSA!). Working with it I was able to easily create the diagrams for the documentation for this class. Once the diagram was created, I saved it using the “Export Image” feature and saved it as a PNG format file which I then opened in Adobe Photoshop Elements to add fills and text.
Follow along with me as I go through the process of creating a diagram. Here is a picture of the quilt. I am going to be creating diagrams for two of the blocks: the bottom left – a four petal flower – and the center block at the right hand edge – a six petal flower.
The finished block size is 7.5 inches. I began by drawing a square that was 7.5 inches on each side in my KNK Studio software. I saved this empty square as a separate file since I would be using that as a starting point for all of my diagrams. I switched the units of measurement on my screen from inches to millimeters. Sewing machine designers think in metric therefore most of the accessories for the machines have metric measurements rather than inches. It is really a great feature of the KNK Studio software to be able to switch back and forth while working on the same file.
To create the four petal flower, I drew a circle that was 16 cm (160 mm) in diameter in an area of the screen outside of the square. I copied that circle so I had two circles of the same size. I drew horizontal and vertical lines across the square so they intersected at the center of the square. These lines were used as guide lines. I could also have used the “Guideline” feature of KNK Studio.
One circle was placed so its right edge was touching the center of the square and the center of the circle was on the horizontal center line of the square. The second circle was placed so the bottom edge was touching the center of the square and its center was on the vertical center line of the square.
The two circles were selected and welded using the second of the three options (“And”) leaving a petal shape.
A second set of two circles were drawn at 12 cm (120 mm) in diameter and a second, smaller, petal shape was created as a result of another “And” weld in the same manner as the larger petal. The smaller petal shape was placed inside of the larger one with the points at the center of the square. The two petals were selected and welded with the third option (“XOR”).
The combined petal was duplicated and rotated around the center of the square to form the four petal flower. The center vertical and horizontal guide lines were deleted.
This completed the image I wanted for the diagram. To make the diagram easier to see when included in a document, the measurement units were changed back to inches and the “Stroke and Fill Tools” used to widen all of the lines to 0.050 inches.
The entire image was selected and the “Export Image” function used to create a PNG format file to be inserted into a document.
To create the diagram for the six petal flower, I began with my empty 7.5 inch square, drew a 16 cm (160 mm) circle, and centered the circle in the square (select both items and press ALT + 7). To mark six evenly spaced points on the edge of the circle, I drew a 6 pointed star which would serve as my guide lines for the next steps.
I drew two more 16 cm (160 mm) circles and positioned them so the edges intersected the 1st circle at two of the star points and overlapped to form a narrow petal shape.
The two circles were selected and welded using the “And” function to create the petal shape.
The petal shape was duplicated and rotated to position it in each of the six points of the star so one end was at the point and the others met in the center.
The star shape and the 1st circle were deleted. The units of measurement was changed to inches and the lines thickened as for the four petal flower.
All of the image was selected and exported using the “Export Image” function as a PNG format file.
Make the Cut software could also be utilized to create drawing images as well. The “Shadow Layer” function would be used to make the lines thicker.