Facebook Email Pinterest Twitter X Instagram Tiktok Icon YouTube Icon Headphones Icon Favorite Navigation Search Icon Forum Search Icon Main Search Icon Close Icon Video Play Icon Indicator Arrow Icon Close Icon Hamburger/Search Icon Plus Icon Arrow Down Icon Video Guide Icon Article Guide Icon Modal Close Icon Guide Search Icon

Conversational Threads

scale drawing software

alicealice | Posted in General Discussion on

Hello all

I have just started sewing again after a long break (years) and am looking for some free or cheap software that does scale drawings…I found a download ($30) for QuiltComposer that looks quite cool if I were doing a quilt…but I just want to design a comforter cover using fabrics I have and make sure I have a pleasing design. So something that will do a scale 2 dimensional drawing…I have tried “Open Office Draw.” The price was right, but it wasn’t easy to change the scale to something practical for sewing.

Any suggestions would be welcome. Glad to be back in the sewing room (well, dining room really).



  1. JanF | | #1

    Try 2D -Design?

  2. Teaf5 | | #2

    Not to sound simplistic, but I've found that colored pencils/pens and graph paper work far easier and better for expandable designs than any software I've ever seen.  You can choose 1/4" or 1" grids, depending on the complexity of your motif, sketch it out until it looks right, and then enlarge it easily to any size that has been divided into the same number of squares.

    Although this sounds time-consuming, it's really very fast; I've designed huge soccer banners, wall hangings and murals in less than an hour this way.  There's no complicated math involved either; you simply label the horizontal lines with letters and the vertical ones with numbers on the original, and then copy square to square to the larger, gridded surface.

    Last year, I used this method to enlarge a 2-inch motif to a 3-foot one for the center of a quilt in about a half hour, while sipping tea and chatting with my sister.  It's a historical technique that has no limitation on printout or paper size.

    1. Ceeayche | | #3

      I agree with Teal.  Unless your design is very complicated.

      Good luck with your project!

      Edited 10/9/2008 8:07 pm ET by CHL

      1. alicealice | | #4

        I tried the graph paper and got frustrated wanting to change things and having to redraw...a woman a little patience I guess. Anyway thank you all for your suggestions...I will deal.Alice

        1. Teaf5 | | #6

          Another option is to use a scanner on your original drawings and set it to 200% or so; you'd have to print out a lot of pages and tape them together, but it would give you an idea.

          On large-scale designs, I often do a rough mockup using blank newsprint from a roll end or lay folded pieces of fabric on a plain bed sheet in roughly the spaces and sizes they will need to be.  Mainly, I am trying to avoid doing a lot of math, but also I find that I have a better sense of scale and color using actual fabrics rather than inks. 

          On a comforter, I'd want to put my mockup onto the bed so that I could get a good idea about light in the room and the contours of the bed.  In this way, I can decide how bright to make the colors and figure out where the focal point should be.

  3. Sancin | | #5

    I am afraid I can't find it at this time but there is a sheet of paper floating around in cyber space telling the percentage to increase or decrease scale of anything you scan on your computer printer to get what you want. It seems to me it may have been available free from Denver Fabrics, but my memory fails me. I had the paper, which was almost unreadable from use on a bulletin board in my sewing room, but it seems to have hidden itself after I painted the room.

This post is archived.

Threads Insider

Get instant access to hundreds of videos, tutorials, projects, and more.

Start Your Free Trial

Already an Insider? Log in

Conversational Threads

Recent Posts and Replies

  • |
  • |
  • |
  • |
  • |
  • |

Threads Insider Exclusives

View All
View All


Shop the Store

View All
View More