Sew a Super-Sized Dresden
Start with an approachable lap-size quilt pattern and make a larger, bed-size quilt. The larger Dresden appliqués can be stitched in approximately the same amount of time as smaller blocks, one of the bonuses to super-sizing your quilt blocks. The beauty of this template is that a Dresden Plate block can be made as small as 12” or as large as 40” — a total of six sizes.
I met Bonnie Page at Sewing Weekend, and she showed me these images of a quilt she made with my Dresden Template. It’s a modified version of the Dresden Lap Quilt that is featured in my book, Super-Sized Quilts. It’s always gratifying to see a viewer’s project that they created after watching Sewing With Nancy. Recently, Bonnie shared her photos of the larger quilt that she made using the instructions featured on my TV show, Super-Sized Quilts. The project my staff and I made was a lap-size quilt. Bonnie wisely made it larger to serve as a bed comforter.
To create the quilts from this two-part series, try Sewing With Nancy’s Super-Sized Quilts Template, Book, and DVD collection.
Make the Quilt!
Make the Blue/Purple Dresden Lap Quilt in any size with the complete directions included in the Sew Grand Dresden Templates. Here’s a quick visual overview of how simply this block-based quilt goes together.
- Trace and cut the wedge shapes.
- Fold and stitch the wedges.
- Clip threads between chain-pieced wedges.
- Turn right side out; press.
- Stitch Dresden wedges together.
- Press seam allowances open.
- Five Dresden wedges will create one quarter of the Dresden circle.
- Stitch 10 pairs to make a plate.
- Use a facing technique and circle template to create the center circles.
- Choose the appropriate coordinating circle size for the Dresden you create.
- Using squares of fabric and interfacing, pin the smooth side of the interfacing on the right side of the fabric.
- Center the circle template on the interfacing.
- Use a fine tip marking pen to trace the circle onto the interfacing.
- Straight stitch, using a short stitch length, 2.0—2.5, directly on the marked curve.
- Use a rotary pinking blade to remove excess fabric.
- Remove the excess interfacing from within the circles, leaving approximately 1″ of interfacing.
- Turn the interfacing to the wrong side.
- Use a turning tool to smooth the curves.
- Make four 16” Dresden plates and one 36” Dresden plate
- Position the stitched Dresden plate in the center block.
- Pin in place.
- Use monofilament thread to edgestitch around the points.
- Add sashing to the center block.
- Add a second, wider border. Specific sewing instructions can be found in Super-Sized Quilts.
- Position the smaller Dresden plates in the corners.
- Pin and edgestitch with monofilament thread. Choose a straight stitch, blanket stitch, or other decorative stitch.
Bonnie Page’s Quilt
By adding multiple borders to the original Dresden Lap Quilt, Bonnie created a quilt large enough for her bed.
“After seeing the Dresden Lap Quilt at one of the seminars given by Nancy at Nancy’s Notions Sewing Weekend a couple of years ago, I was drawn to the design and immediately purchased the Trace’n Create Quilt Dresden Plate & Fan template set. After taking my prized purchase home, I thought about the making of the quilt for about a year, and I finally got the courage to buy the fabric to make the Dresden plates. I was afraid to start the quilt because it wasn’t designed for a queen size bed, but after completing the plates, I was ready to appliqué them on a background. My daughter helped me choose the dark blue background fabric, which really showcases the fabrics in the plates. There was a little math (not my strong suit) involved in deciding how wide to make the borders, but in the end, it looks like I wanted it to. Then I decided to try hand quilting and learned that the more you hand sew, the more even your stitches become. Every quilt I make becomes a learning experience in some way.
Now my granddaughters are wanting this quilt. So, with eight granddaughters and one grandson, I have a lot more quilts to make. I’ve done several youth quilts for them, but they want something more traditional.”—Bonnie Page
Bonnie used a combination of linear echo-quilting and swirled designs in each Dresden wedge to create a truly lovely finished design. Beautiful work!
Increase the size of your next quilt by adding a single border or a series of borders! Find more details and step-by-step directions to add borders in my book Fearless Quilting Finishes. Here’s a digital mock up of how easy it can be to grow your project to suit your desired sizes:
Watch The Best of Sewing With Nancy’s Super-Sized Quilts on Sewing With Nancy online.
For a chance to win a copy of the Super-Sized Quilts Book, from Nancy’s Notions, leave a comment below sharing what size quilt you make most often.
The randomly selected winner of the Change-Up Patchwork book/DVD from Nancy’s Notions is Mary Lou.
Her comment was, “Quilting is such a pleasure. Thank you for coming up with more inspiration for us.”
Bye for now,
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