dresden blades
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Making a Quilt Your Own Series – Part 3

Note: This is part 3 in a series. Read part 1 here and part 2 here.

After making lots of Dresden Plate blades, and one full circle, I knew I wanted to make these into flowers. I didn’t want to box myself into all the flowers being full circles, so I start putting together just twosies and a few foursies. (If you want to add the extra star point between your blades, I highly recommend the pattern Dresden Star by Edyta Sitar)

dresden blades

As I mentioned before, I had purchased a kit for this class, so I made all the blades that I could with the fabric I had. I figured I would probably not use them all but I would rather have them than not.

dresden pile o blades

Once I sewed all the two’s and four’s up, I decided to figure out how to do the stem. I chose to make half inch bias tape for two reasons: 1. It seemed like a good proportion for even a two-blade flower bud and 2. I had half inch Steam-A-Seam 2™ tape so I knew I could fuse it down easily at that size. I cut this on a 60-degree bias and used a Clover® Bias Maker to make the stems.

dresden stems

Next I needed to figure out how to do the centers of the full flowers and the bases for the buds and partial flowers. For the centers of the full flowers, I used my Frixion pen, an old CD, Sulky Soft ‘n Sheer Extra™ Stabilizer and a nice batik fabric. I traced around the CD onto the Sulky Soft N Sheer Extra stabilizer and the fabric.

dresden 18

dresden 17

Then I cut out the circles and put the bumpy side of the stabilizer touching the right side of the fabric.

dresden 16


Now sew around the entire circle.

dresden 15

Pull the Soft ‘n Sheer Stabilizer away from the fabric and cut a small slit in the middle of the stabilizer ONLY.

dresden 23

Clip along the edges, taking care not to clip your seam, and turn the circle right side out.  I use a chop stick or an unsharpened pencil to round off the edges.

dresden 22

Now the bumpy side of the Soft ‘n Sheer Extra is on the bottom, which is perfect, because now you can iron your center in place. It will hold the center and the flower in place when you sew it down. For the quarter circles, I used the same CD and Frixion pen. I laid out a 4 blade flower sections and put some Soft ‘n Sheer Extra Stabilizer on top. Since you can see through the stabilizer, I was able to place the CD and trace along the edge. I went about a quarter inch past the edge of the flower. I used a ruler to complete the wedge.

dresden bases with cd 1


For the green bases of the 2 blade bud flowers, I just eye-balled the size and drew it directly onto the fusible web, then cut them out, but you could do those with Soft ‘n Sheer Extra too if you want.

dresden flower bases


In Part 4, I will show how I decided on placement, and my machine quilting and applique method for these flowers using a combination of Sulky Rayon Thread and Sulky Cotton Thread.

Happy Sewing!

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  • Kelly Nagel

    I did 60 degree bias because I knew I wouldn’t be making any really big curves and I could get more bias out of a smaller piece of fabric. Unless I’m doing a scalloped border or something that has lots of curve, I usually do 60 degree bias.

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