WIP – The Accidental Dresden

The thing I love most about quilting is how creative it allows us to be. If plan A doesn’t work, we can go to Plan B or C or D until we have a quilt that may not end up looking anything at all like it started, but that we like so much more.

That’s exactly what is happening to me with my current project. You may remember this post from a couple weeks ago. I ordered a layer cake – Unforgettable by Riley Blake – and planned to make a Dresden Coin quilt using a tutorial from MSQC. I also ordered yardage in two different prints for the backing, border, and binding. What I didn’t do was listen carefully to the instructions before I ordered – I needed two layer cakes.  So the quilt wasn’t going to be nearly as large as I wanted.

Some of you suggested I make a center block and use the Dresden blades strip as a border to enlarge the quilt. I liked that idea, so after some thought I decided to use some of the blades to make a Dresden plate.  In the beginning I had no intention of making a Dresden plate but I really liked it and it was BIG- about 22 inches.

Dresden Plate Quilt

Large Dresden Plate

But then I couldn’t get the borders to look right.  I played with them for a couple of days but nothing felt right. Sigh……now I’m on to Plan C.

Large and Small Dresden Plates

I then made three small Dresden plates. I used the fabric I initially purchased for the backing as the background for the Dresden flowers (notice I’m calling them flowers now).  At this point I’m still struggling with borders. Nothing was working and I was trying to use as much of that layer cake as I could. What I came up with isn’t perfect, and I will never be able to tell someone how to do it, but it works.

Pieced border dresden quilt

Background and Pieced Border

The borders are pieced, there are a ton of seams, but because the fabric had already been cut into blades I had no choice.

I finally decided on the placement of the flowers on the front of the quilt.  Who knew plopping four pieces on the front of a quilt would require so much thought??? 🙂

Dresden Plate Quilt

I know what you’re thinking – if I’m calling them flowers there must be stems, right?  Well, I’m considering it but I don’t know yet.  There will be more playing around with this top before it is finished…..

I pieced the backing with more of the Riley Blake print and a Kona solid in Khaki. The back tried my patience almost more than the front. I don’t have a good picture of it to show you, so you’ll have to wait for that.

Even though this quilt looks quite simple, it’s stretched my skills as a sewist. I’ve measured incorrectly, miscalculated, sewed seams backwards……I think I’m the poster child for what not to do when making a quilt!

However, I’m excited to see how it’s going to end up, because right now it doesn’t look at all like the vision I had in my head. It really is a Work In Progress!




About Beth

I’m a wife, mother of two, and lover of all things crafty. I love to cook up new things in the kitchen and in my craft room, and sometimes get “licking the spoon” mixed up with “licking the fabric”!!

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6 Responses to WIP – The Accidental Dresden

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  3. Hydeeann says:

    From a fellow poster child for how not to quilt, I say your instincts have served you very well so keep going! This is wonderfully improvised.

  4. Debbie says:

    I am waiting patiently to see what happens with the Dresden flowers now. All that perseverance will pay off in the end!

  5. Congratulations for not giving up! It really does look great at this point, even if it’s nothing like what you planned.

  6. Thank you so much for posting all the details on the journey this quilt has taken you on! You have definitely been there and back again with this one. I really like the Dresden flowers, and I look forward to seeing where it takes you next!

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