The Internet has a maze of information that can be very helpful for computer quilters to use in designing tessellation quilts. What I have done in this article is pulled together the best informational links I found into a logical tutorial to help you think tessellation and create tessellation quilts using your Quilting and Graphic Software programs!

March 2000
Editor: Sharla Hicks
Newsletters index for all issuesTable of contents for this issue

How to create Tessellations
using your Quilt or Graphic Software

By Sharla Hicks © 2000

IMPORTANT! PLEASE READ

I have a system of frames in this article that seem to work for some and not others. For me, they work in Netscape versions 3.x and 4.x and Internet Explorer versions 3.x and 4.x. If you try the below link test and it does not work for you or is too confusing, click here for a regular page that uses more traditional navigation methods.

The off-site tutorial links I have included in this article will open inside the BOTTOM frame** you see at the bottom of this window. Click here for a Test Page Link that will appear in the bottom frame. Follow instructions in the bottom frame.

The two frames** stacked here ARE resizeable see instruction in the BOTTOM frame for how to do this.

OK, too confusing? the frames are not working for you? then click here to open a a new window for just this article without frames and use the back button to navigate back and forth between my article here and the off-site recommendations.

 





The Internet has a maze of information that can be very helpful for computer quilters to use in designing tessellation quilts. What I have done in this article is pulled together the best informational links I found into a logical tutorial to help you think tessellation and create tessellation quilts using your Quilting and Graphic Software programs!

Table of Contents for How to Create Tessellations using your Quilt Software: FYI: the Table of Contents Links will NOT appear in the bottom frame, they are links to sections of the articles in this frame.


What is a tessellation and HOW does it apply to a Quilt Design?

Creating tessellations patterning with your quilt software is much less complex than you might think. I think the word "tessellation" scares us because we think of the complex imagery of MC Escher or that forbidden word, yikes, MATH! But the bottom line is we are using these shapes everyday in our quilting designs and do not always realize we are using math and tessellation. Some of the math shapes are familiar and others like rhombus or hyperbolic we can add to our vocabulary. Remember how many of us thought algebra and geometry would never apply to us, well we were wrong, quilting is about geometry and math. Think how impressed your friends will be the next time you tell them that the Block was designed using rhombase and hyperbolic patterns ;->.

Now step back a minute, catch your breathe and look at the definition for tessellation and it becomes clear that most repeated designs in our quilts can be classified as a tessellation. For a clear explanation and examples to show you what I am talking about, look at What Is a Tessellation? by Suzanne Alejandre, you will see her quilt like examples!

  • Click on the following underlined link to open in the frame below. Article. NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Article.

Next time you think of a quilt made from triangles, squares or rectangles, think instead, " a tessellation of squares, a tessellation of triangles, a tessellation of rectangles."

Tessellation Quilts use several principles that will aide your "brain cells" to think tessellation when developing a computer designed quilt based in tessellation. As in all areas of learning, I believe that when you learn the vocabulary of an idea, it is yours for life. Here is the vocabulary of tessellation for quilt makers. Start using the vocabulary listed below as you are looking at examples to help you identify and then fuse the ideas into your brain cells, then it is only a quick step to apply this information to a quilting or graphic program. Each idea will be covered in its own section of this tutorial.

  • THINK: "Tessellation Lattice".
  • THINK: "Transform" a shape to add add interest to a Tessellation Quilt design.
  • THINK: "Symmetry" as it applies to Tessellation Quilts.
  • THINK: "Rotation" as it applies to Tessellations.
  • THINK: "Glide Reflection" as it applies to Tessellations.

THINK: "Tessellation Lattice" and about HOW it applies to the Quilt.

THINK: "Tessellation Lattice" Sound familiar?

Jump on over to a page called "Tessellation Lattice" to find clear examples of how the outside line of the shape can be thought of as a lattice that frames the pattern/block inside. Look closely at the diagrams arrows and other strong markings to point out the not always obvious "lattice" (outside edge of shape/block) that frames the pattern.

  • Click on the following underlined link to open in the frame below."Tessellation Lattice". NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. "Tessellation Lattice"

Suzanne Alejandre and others at the Math Forum developed for classroom settings that we can use to create quilts using tessellation patterns.

Then lets look at adding interest to the tessellation designs by adding patterning inside the lattice frame work identified above. Check out the following page for 17 excellent example of tessellated shapes for the "lattice" frame enclosing a pattern/block --make sure as you look at the designs that you identify the "lattice" frame in each example.

  • Click on the following underlined link to open in the frame below. Examples. NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Examples.

 

THINK "Tessellation Lattice" to develop tessellation quilts using our Quilt Software and Graphic Programs.

I have found information that PC and MAC users can apply to their quilting software and graphic program of choice and I promise all will be delighted with the following set of tutorials instructions by Suzanne Alejandre and others at the Math Forum developed for classroom settings that we can use to create quilts using tessellation patterns.

Use the ideas behind Islamic Tiling Tessellations to create a triangle and then add a REAL QUILT LATTICE to frame the triangle with tabbed shape called a tetrahedron. This tutorial instructions are for using paper and pencil with a Straight Ruler and Compass to design tessellations. Adapting this idea to work with the grids and drawing tools found in our quilting software and graphic programs is a very small leap.

NOTE: This is a two page tutorial and skimming through the graphics is probably all you will need to do to get the idea. Remember to think of your quilt or graphic program drawing area as opportunity to think Straight Edge Ruler and Compass.

 

Open your favorite quilt or graphic program, then follow the PICTURES in the tutorial below to create on the computer screen a tetrahedron triangle design using "tessellation lattice" holding together the design.

  • Click on the following underlined link to open in the frame below. Click here for Tutorial (Resize for easier viewing.) NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Click here for Tutorial

HINT: Try this idea with other shapes like a diamond, hexagon, octagon, even the tried and true square and rectangle or any other shape you can think up.

THINK "Transformation" and tessellation quilts become original very quickly.

In the following tutorial , you will start with a "Tessellation Lattice" using a parallelogram. Then you will transform the parallelogram into an irregular shape.

HINT: Think of the parallelogram as the basic underlying grid (Tessellation Lattice) and then work your transformation from there. Remember: "Lattice" when referred to in a tessellation is actually the outside line of the original shape in this case the parallelogram, when you see the tutorial, you will instantly know what I am talking about.

The ideas shown in the tutorial Tutorial for Geometer's Sketchpad written by Cathi Sanders (Punahou School in Honolulu, Hawaii) and posted at the Math Forum below can be applied or adapted to work in our quilting software.

  • Click on the following underlined links to open in the frame below. Tutorial posted at the Math Forum (resize for easier viewing.) NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Tutorial posted at the Math Forum.

 

The ideas used: Use a line tool to draw the shape and then the lines are joined to create a new single shape/patch that can be filled with a paint tool.

Also try the tutorial techniques working with a Square, Rectangle and Triangle shapes.

Quilt-Pro 2 and 3 have a drawing tool that just makes lines and a Join function under the Effects Menu that work similar to what you are seeing in the Geometer Sketchpad tutorial and would be the program that works the most like the tutorial example.

  • Do not set this block in Quilt-Pro's traditional quilt layout, build the block repeats for the quilt manually on the block screen using copy and paste.

The following Quilting Software: Creative Impulse, Electric Quilt, QuiltSOFT, PCQuilt and VQuilt have a Block frame setup to draw the patches for the block. When saving the block, the outline of the frame and everything inside the frame becomes part of the block. This makes creating a single-stand-alone-irregular patch block impossible to create without a work around. Don't despair, I will give you the work around next.

Instead of thinking of this limitation as a defect, think of the the outside of the block drawing frame as the "tessellation lattice" using a square instead of parallelogram.

  1. Create two identical block using only the right side and bottom transformations shown in the tutorial. See below example A on this page. (Make the frame below smaller if need to see my examples.)
  2. Color each block components to create the second half of the first block. See below example B.
  3. Set these blocks together using the quilt layout in an alternating block quilt layout with NO sashes to create the complete visual transformation. When you look at 4 blocks together in example C below, the coloring allows you to ignore the frame lines.
    • PCQuilt and Creative Impulse 2000 will allow the user to see the block in the quilt as it is being created.
    • Quilt-Pro has the option to have two windows open at the time allowing you to view the block and quilt screens at the same, the drawing does not automatically appear in the quilt, you must layout each time, but if you want to make changes the two reference windows are nice.
    • EQ, QuiltSOFT and VQuilt's Quilt Layout Screen are one their own screen and you will see the tessellation when you create an "alternate block quilt layout."




    Example A



    Example B


    Example C

HINT: To see different variations of the block setting, select an on-point variation using rectangle blocks. Try several different block size variations. In EQ there is an additional setting called Baby Blocks that creates 3-D like variations. Also try different color variations.

HINT: Okay, now you have the idea of how to approach a workaround transformation from a Square. What about other shapes? Create your block using rectangle measurements like 6" x 10 1/2" block. Experiment with a rectangle block created from half square triangles to get diamonds and triangles. Then add transformation for interest.

FYI: The ideas and information in Barb Vlack's book, EQ4 Magic, could easily be applied to other quilting software, excluding the specific step-by-step instructions. EQ4 Magic, chapter 2 covers creating quilts that could be used for tessellation ideas like a Thousand Pyramids Quilt, Hexagon Stars, Doodle Quilt and other quilt designs. If you do not have this book yet and want to learn more about pushing the EQ4 or your quilt software capabilities for creating tessellation blocks and quilts and much more, it is well the purchase because the book helps you think past the obvious. (We have the book in our Electric Quilt Product line at a discount price if you are interested in ordering it. )

"Transform" a Square "Tessellation Lattice" using freeform curves as the edges.

Develop a quilt using variation by transforming a block. Sound a bit familiar? Remember THINK transformation? The following tutorial is a variation of the previous exercise.

The ideas shown in this tutorial can be applied or adapted to work in our quilting software. "Freeform tessellation created in Claris Works" by Suzanne Alejandre at the Math Forum.

For the beginner user of Claris Works, Suzanne includes a get started tutorial to help you.

  • Click on the following underlined links to open in the frame below. Beginner user of Claris Works. NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Beginner user of Claris Works.

The tutorial uses a Lasso Tool to carve away the block sides.

  • The lasso tool is available in most of the quality graphic programs and could be used like the tutorial outlines.
  • Unfortunately none of the Quilting programs have the same type of cutting tool. So I suggest the same workaround outline above is the way to go. See Example A, Example B, and Example C above.

In Quilting Software, careful use of some of the drawing tools found in the software "may" and the operative word here is "may" produce similar results. Here are some ideas of what to expect in tools in the quilting software. The drawing tool that will replicate a similar look and feel of small indented curves is different for each program.

  • VQuilt has a freehand pencil that is simple to use and will quickly create the same look and feel.
  • Quilt-Pro 2 and 3 have a freeform curve tool used in conjunction with the Join function under the Effect Menu or the multipoint polygon tool that allows up to 50 points per patch and can be used to create a similar look. Nodes (black dots along the curve line) are editable for tweaking if necessary. Sometimes it will be easier to draw a larger than needed line or shape and resize down to fit the shape.
  • In Electric Quilt 3 and 4 the look is harder to reproduce in EQ but here are some ideas on how to try. You can select the curve tool and draw the segments of the curve in large scale and resize down to smaller. Another ideas would be to set drawing board setup for your snap-to divisions very close and use the zoom tool when drawing to make sure that each node is touching the last node or the patch will not complete and it is really a pain to have to go back and check every node, especially on a patch like this one that will have many many nodes. Nodes (black dots on the curve or line ends) may be tweaked individually if necessary.
  • For the circle patterning on the design, use the idea of applique, in Quilt-Pro 3 and Electric Quilt, use the applique layer and create small circles across the surface of the design, or find a favorite fabric to fill the patch.
  • This type of curve drawing will not be possible in QuiltSOFT, Creative Impulse or the current version of PCQuilt (I have not seen the NEW upgrade coming up for PCQuilt, so I am not sure about it yet, will keep you posted)

"Transform" a tessellation using Black and White coloring. Also known as positive negative.

The below tutorial has a wonderful face example that really impressed me! This is a variation of the previous exercise. Remember, repetition is the key to learning! The following ideas can be adapted to our quilting software.

These images are created in a tutorial for HyperCard by Suzanne Alejandre at the Math Forum.

  • Click on the following underlined links to open in the frame below. Tutorial for HyperCard by Suzanne Alejandre at the Math Forum. NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Tutorial for HyperCard by Suzanne Alejandre at the Math Forum.

If you have HyperCard, here is are tips to getting started in the program by Suzanne Alejandre at the Math Forum.

  • Click on the following underlined links to open in the frame below. Tips by Suzanne Alejandre at the Math Forum. NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Tips by Suzanne Alejandre at the Math Forum.

This tutorial also uses a Lasso Tool to carve away the block sides.

  • The lasso tool is available in most of the quality graphic programs and could be used like the tutorial outlines.
  • Unfortunately none of the Quilting programs have the same type of cutting tool. So I suggest the same workaround outlined in the above exercise as the way to go. See Example A, Example B, and Example C above. Also use the tool information included above for freeform tessellation designs.

NOTE about little patterning details on the face: The only quilting software that will allow you to add lines or curves that are not connected is Quilt Pro 1, 2 and 3. All the other quilting software will require a closed patch of some sort (the small circles will be easy) but the hair, ear and mouth will be tricky to simulate unless you add them later with a pencil or pen to the printout.

NOTE: This example could also be completed using straight line shapes that are available in all the quilting software programs.



Okay, THINK "Symmetry", it plays a big role in the Tessellation Quilt!

Symmetry is at the very core of quilting and the creation of tessellations. Look at the symmetry behind the tessellations in these two articles listed below from the Where's the Math Series by Dr. Susan Addington. Play with the ideas presented here in your favorite quilt program and you will be well on your way to thinking and designing tessellation quilts. HINT: Think graph paper and pencil when you approach tessellations on your computer screen

The Four Types of Symmetry in the Plane by Dr. Susan Addington.

  • Click on the following underlined link to open in the frame below. Article. NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Article.

Repeated Reflections of an "R" by Dr. Susan Addington. The alphabet is a strong design principle, doing this exercise might be the seeds for a new quilt design.

  • Click on the following underlined link to open in the frame below. Article. NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Article.

The next set of tutorials will give you the opportunity to use Rotation and Glide Reflection in your tessellation designs.

THINK "Rotation" in Escher-like Tessellation Quilt Designs.

Transform a Tessellations with Rotations created using Freeform lines. NOTE: These examples could also be completed using straight line shapes.

The following tutorial is Curved Freeform line rotation examples. These designs take on a Celtic Feel, created using Hyper Card by Suzanne Alejandre at the Math Forum.

  • Click on the following underlined links to open in the frame below. Tutorial by Suzanne Alejandre at the Math Forum. NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Tutorial by Suzanne Alejandre at the Math Forum.

Most Graphic software programs have a tool that will allow freeform lines to be drawn.

In quilting software, Quilt-Pro 3 is the only software that has a line and curve tools that does not require a closed patch.

In Creative Impulse, Electric Quilt, PCQuilt and VQuilt, design a tightly designed curve patch that is CLOSED. QuiltSOFT users may find a drawing slim closed patch difficult because of the large grids used in the drawing screen.

Freeform line rotation example with closed curved patch created using HyperStudio by Suzanne Alejandre at the Math Forum. NOTE: This example could also be completed using straight line shapes.

Click on the following underlined links to open in the frame below. Tutorial by Suzanne Alejandre at the Math Forum. (Resize frame for better viewing) NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Tutorial by Suzanne Alejandre at the Math Forum.

HyperStudio & Tessellations with Rotations Directions by Maureen Grant. VERY intricate.

Click on the following underlined link to open in the frame below. Tutorial. NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Tutorial.

NOTE: This example could also be completed using straight line shapes that are available in all the quilting software programs.

Most graphic software have this type of tool.

HINT: Think applique here. Check out your Quilt Software Applique libraries for suitable shapes. Electric Quilt, Quilt-Pro and PCQuilt 2 have excellent Applique blocks and shapes in their block libraries.

Electric Quilt 4 has the perfect drawing tool here. After completing your initial shape, use the Wreathmaker to automatically Rotate your design for you around the center axis! Wow, yes it is that easy, click, click, click for a shape and then tessellate around the a center axis!!!!

A curve tool could be used to create this example, refer to previous examples for additional details. Curve tools are found in Creative Impulse, Electric Quilt, PCQuilt, Quilt-Pro, and VQuilt.

NOTE: This example could also be completed using straight line shapes that are available in all the quilting software programs.

THINK "Glide Reflection" in an Escher-like Tessellation Quilt Design.

Transform a tessellation using Glide reflection to turn a triangle into a real tessellation surprise!

HyperCard & Tessellations with Glide Reflection by Suzanne Alejandre at the Math Forum.

  • Click on the following underlined links to open in the frame below. Tutorial. (Resize for better viewing) NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it.

Tutorial by Suzanne Alejandre at the Math Forum

HyperStudio & Tessellations with Glide Reflection directions by Suzanne Alejandre at the Math Forum.

  • Click on the following underlined link to open in the frame below. Tutorial. (Resize for better viewing) NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Tutorial

The cutting technique using a lasso is found in most quality graphic programs.

This effect could be simulated with care using the tools found in our Quilting Software. Since quilt programs do not have lassos or effective cutting tool, think about creating the concept as separate patches and then completing the design in the order outlined in the exercise.

NOTE: This example could also be completed using straight line shapes that are available in all the quilting software programs.

More inspiration and variation in tessellations on the Internet:

NOTE: To those with frame capable browsers, the tutorial will appear in the frame below, if not it will replace this window and you will have to use the back button to return to this tutorial.

Okay, you now have an ideas and shapes behind THINK tessellation in place. Lets go on and check out more ways to create variations for Tessellations.

Tessellation in the round examples: otherwise known as hyperbolic tessellations -- don't you love those math words -- don't let the math of all this scare you away. Instead think of Mariner Compass and Kaleidoscope quilts as complex examples of a tessellation in the round. When on this page, keep checking under the link examples because there is a hot bed of examples available for inspiring you to create quilts in a new and fresh ways.

  • Click on the following underlined link to open in the frame below. Examples. (Resize for better viewing) NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Examples.

Now that you have the ideas behind tessellations, look at this very interactive Aytech Java Applet based on triangles, rhombus, trapezoid, to see some of the shapes that could be used together to develop tessellations quilts -- remember to think of the outside of the line as the lattice frame for the design. Remember that each shape can be transformed with rotation and glide reflection as shown in the above exercises to create a traditional or innovative tessellating design. NOTE: Tessellations are NOT limited to the shapes in the Applet, as you have seen in the above tutorials. To use the following Java Applet, your browser must be Java enable. Instructions for this are listed below.

  • Click on the following underlined link to open in the frame below. Aytech Java Applet (resize for better viewing) NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Aytech Java Applet
For instructions on how to use the Pattern Java Applet, go here.
  • Click on the following underlined link to open in the frame below. Instructions. (Resize for better viewing) NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Instructions.

NOTE: Your browser must be Java Enabled, the following browsers are capable of running Java.

NOTE: If you are using one of the below mentioned browsers and the Java Applet does not work, go to the Aytech page to see what settings you need to change to use it.

  • Netscape Navigator™ version 3.1
  • Netscape Communicator™ version 4
  • Internet Explorer™ version 3 or greater
  • Hotjava™ browser in any version
  • Click on the following underlined link to open in the frame below. Info. (Resize for better viewing) NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Info.

See how tessellation can play a role in creating Border and for Quilting Lines for a quilt by drawing a border type design using the following Java Applet. (Your browser must be Java enabled to use this, refer to the above information for additional instructions if needed) Jump on over to BorderLiners done by the Long Island Children's Museum. Below is an example of the screen.

Ideas on how to use your printer to created FOLDED Tessellations otherwise known as Origami

Below are links to Origami tessellation examples by Alex Bateman created out of tissue paper that look VERY fabric like.

Folded Examples: Circles Twist, Honeycomb, Octagon, Octagon 2, and Square Dance

  • Click on the following underlined link to open in the frame below. Folded Examples. (Resize for better viewing) NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Folded Examples.

Folded examples: Hexagonal star, Tessellation based on 6.4.3.4 geometry, Bifurcating Trees, simple crease pattern, new tessellation

  • Click on the following underlined link to open in the frame below. Folded examples. (Resize for better viewing) NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Folded examples.

Folded Examples: Cool spirals based on Voderberg's tilings, several geometry based designs and a dodecagons (looks like circles out of folds, amazing!)

  • Click on the following underlined link to open in the frame below. Folded Examples. (Resize for better viewing) NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. Folded Examples.

Alex has created some download .ps files that you can printout to do some folding on your own.

  • NOTE: To download the .ps file, click on the picture and it will open your download dialogue box.
  • NOTE: .ps files are a generic file format that your Post Script enable printer (most newer models are) can read and print. You will not need a special program.
  • IDEA: I would suggest that you could print origami designs on fabric backed with freezer paper, run it through your printer and fold away, then wash out your water soluble ink. Check your ink, some are permanent, laser printer inks wash away also, but always test first.
    • HINT: Decide which side of the fabric to print on. ALWAYS TEST the ink water soluble quality to be sure before completing a piece you wish to display.

Check out Alex's start page for additional examples by other origami designers: Click on the following underlined link to open in the frame below. More examples. (Resize for better viewing) NOTE: If the link page does not show in the frame below, OR for those without Frames OR to open the the tutorial link in a NEW window for easier printouts, click on the next underlined link. FYI: Netscape new browser window remains the same size and cover this page. Resize the Browser Frame and you will see my tutorial behind it. More examples.

  • Models by Dino Andreozzi.
    • Tropical fish page 1. page 2.
    • Indian Face page 1. page 2. page 3.
    • Crane page 1. page 2. page 3. page 4.
    • Star box page 1. page 2.
    • Pyramid
  • Models by Nick Robinson.
    • Elephant's head.
    • Toad. Traditional banger.
    • Dool Squid.
    • Pureland mountains.
    • More mountains.
    • Shining Heart.
    • Wallet.
    • Paper plane LL2.
    • Tessellating fish.
    • Arrow.
    • Dish number 6.
    • Flower form.
  • Model by Edwin Corrie.
    • Duck.

Shareware and demo software, aide to help explore how to design Tessellations

  • Really Good news: Use SymmeToy to create tessellations, kaleidoscopes, and repetitive designs!
    • We discovered and now have added to our product line, a little, but powerful program, called SymmeToy that does a really nice job of creating tessellations, check out the demo and the review for additional information! The review includes a tutorial to get up and running quickly using the 8 free trial sessions as an opportunity to try before you buy.
  • TesselMania! is a unique creativity tool that connects mathematics to the world of art. With it, complex geometric theories come to life as students put together tessellations using translations, rotations, or glide reflections. The product's simple interface - including paint and stamp tools and color palettes - makes it possible for students to produce and investigate intricate tessellations quickly. "Magic Buttons" then show animated sequences of the construction of a tile, demonstrate how tiles are moved to tessellate a plane, and highlight animated sequences of entire tessellations, moving from the original to the modified tiles. Heesch Types are included for advanced students to use to discover a tessellation's original shape. And graphics are easy to import and export with TesselMania!
  • Good News: We have obtained a demo copy of TesselMania! that includes permission to allow you a download.
  • Bad News:
    • The copy, save or print functions are DISABLED in the demo copy.
    • It is a program designed for Windows 3.1 and its color palette requires setting your Computer Color Setting to 256 colors -- this is giant step backwards for Windows 95 and really giant step back for Windows 98 users. SUGGESTION: Change your color settings only temporarily and set back to normal color setting when not running TesselMania!
  • Really Bad News:
    • TesselMania is no longer available for purchase because of a buyout of the program license to a larger company, Matel. Often in these types of buys out smaller programs get left out in the cold and Matel has chosen to take the program out of circulation and not update it to Windows 95/98 standards.

Articles found on Quilting Websites about tessellation and the quilt block: (do you have one to add to this list? Please let me know. )

NOTE: The following links will open in their own blank window. Our tutorial will remain in its own window.

The Quilt Gallery has an article on the subject called Beyond the Block: Tessellating Patterns by Linda Hampton Schiffer. Make sure that you check out all the links because there are great examples hidden behind them!

Jenny Beyers Tip for creating Tessellations: It is always good to see information presented in more than one way and this little tutorial is another presentation of the information shown in the tutorials outlined here. Jenny Beyers also has a books called

Addition Link resources:

NOTE: The following links will open in their own blank window. Our tutorial will remain in its own window.