I just finished a quilt that I have been working on for awhile now. I finished it, of course, because I want it in my local guild’s quilt show in a couple weeks. I really need a deadline to push me to completion a lot of the time! But this quilt was a little different because I really wanted it to be my own design, all me, not just a pattern. So many months ago, I pulled out my graph paper and colored pencils and decided I would draw a quilt. I stared at the paper…and stared….and stared. Nothing ever got down on that paper. It was as if I suddenly couldn’t remember a single thing that had ever inspired me in the past.
Around this same time, I signed up to take a class from Edyta Sitar of Laundry Basket Quilts. I didn’t particularly like the pattern we were going to use in this class, but I love Edyta Sitar, knew I wanted to learn from her and she promised me she would give lots of alternatives to finishing this quilt.
Before we go much further, here is the Edyta Sitar pattern that I started with:
And here is the finished quilt:
Do you see the similarities? 🙂 What I ended up with is very different from where I started and I feel like I was truly able to make a quilt that is all my own. No, I didn’t start from scratch and no, I didn’t come up with a brand new block or concept that will take the quilting world by storm! What I was able to do is take a basic building block and build on top of that. In order to launch my creativity, I needed a starting point. I had to start with a pattern. What the pattern did for me is it gave me a jumping off point. In the class, I learned some great tips and techniques for putting together the very traditional Dresden plate. I also purchased a kit so I had most of the fabrics picked out already and I had the privilege of learning from someone who designs her own patterns all the time and was so gracious and willing to share her knowledge of how to make a quilt your own with this very traditional block, the Dresden Plate.
In this blog series, I am going to go through the steps of making this quilt. In it will be some great tips I picked up but I also hope it will help you see how to adjust patterns to make your quilt your own.