Dresden Plate with a Jelly Roll

Making a Dresden Plate quilt was on my Bucket List (the mental list of the many, many quilts I want to try before I die). Problem is that I really am trying to use fabric I already have. I’m bad about buying jelly rolls, because I figure I can easily make something without having to cut all those strips. But, they sit in my studio.

So, for this quilt, I decided to use one of my Riley Blake jelly rolls. I don’t know if you can see or not, but there are 20 points on these Dresden Plates. Twenty-two rolls came with the set, but I left 2 of them out, thinking I could use them in the border somewhere. But then I didn’t. Funny how as you are making a quilt, your journey takes you down different paths than you had originally intended. Anyhow, 20 strips… what size ruler do I need? A circle is 360 degrees. Divide 360 by 20 strips, and you will need an 18 degree Dresden ruler or template.

I wanted big blocks, so I extended a bit beyond what the template showed for where I should cut the tip end. I would be folding the strip lengthwise and sewing that top end to make a tip when it’s folded back, so it wouldn’t be missed when it’s tucked to the back. Missouri Star Quilt Company has a tutorial on how to make the plates here.

I finally finished it and tried some different quilting techniques on it. Those who know me, know that I try to make each quilt unique and add special touches. And, I’ve done those all freehand. I do not have a computer for my machine… yet. I am saving my pennies… it’s on my bucket list. ūüėČ But, I have a couple of the quilting designs on this quilt digitized and available for those who DO have a computer for your quilting machine.

The Crosshatching frame inside the block is available at Legacy Quilting.
The Eyelet Lace border design is also available at Legacy Quilting.

I wasn’t sure what fabric to use for the binding. I love using striped fabric for binding, and my friend, Tina, showed me some striped fabric that would be perfect for this quilt. It picked up that color of blue and the red. But… I ended up just using what I had and repeated that 1/2″ blue border. Saving my pennies…

For those of you who don’t know, I am no longer quilting for hire. The arthritis in my spine won out. So, now I am doing a few other things. One of them is digitizing machine quilting designs. Yes, I can do that for other people’s designs and have done that. My hope is that this will eventually lead me to getting a computer for my machine. Maybe then, I can think about quilting for hire again. I don’t know. That’s a lot of money and a long way off.

A couple of things I’ve done lately is cut my own extension table to fit into my sewing machine table. I ordered an insert 8 months ago, but have not gotten it yet. Yes, I’ve called the shop several times. I finally gave up and made my own. It’s not pretty. I still need to paint it white. But, it feels so much better to be able to spread out the fabric to be sewn without it catching on the edge of my machine.

Not pretty, but it does the job!

Also, Kansas City Regional Quilt Festival was Father’s Day weekend. A quilt that I had quilted for Joan won 2nd place in Viewer’s Choice. It’s a really cute scene of Mom taking care of her baby, so I can see why people liked it. The pattern is called “Love from Above” by Charley Harper. You can buy it here.

I was surprised at the quilting. I thought I hadn’t done a good job on it, but time passing gives you a new view – it wasn’t as bad as I’d thought. But then, the lighting was very complimentary to the quilting great as it bounced off the trees and tall grasses that were stitched into her quilt.

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What was really cool is that both Joan and I got a ribbon for her quilt.

Yay! Thank you, Voters!

The next Kansas City Regional Quilt Festival will be in 2021. Their website is http://kcrqf.com. This year they did an awesome job meeting the needs of so many quilters. Check out their site and try to make it next time!

Quilt Catch Up

As those of you who have blogs know, blogging takes time.¬† I know that is why I haven’t gotten around to posting pictures of customer quilts I have worked on in the last month.¬† I will try to share a lot of pictures in this post and write just enough for you to get the info on these quilts.¬† I have to tell you that I have not snuck any surprises into any of these quilts.¬† I think my mind’s battle with itself scared me from adding any more surprises into other people’s quilts.¬† Here goes…

First off is Cindi’s quilt for her niece.¬† I love her color choices!¬† And, I was so happy to finally get to use some pink thread! She wanted the baby’s name quilted into the quilt, so we did that with a darker color.

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Next is Nancy’s quilt – her colors are soothing and go together so well.¬† Nancy gave me free range, so I decided to quilt feathers all over in the background white and make tulip¬† petals in the log cabin blocks with a matching thread.

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Marianne made a quilt using jelly rolls.  She wanted a simple swirl with the color names quilted into the middle of the colors.  I love how she made an otherwise simple jelly roll quilt look like it was a lot of work РI imagine it was!

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This next one is Leslie’s first quilt.¬† Can you believe it?¬† I thought she did an awesome job of piecing all those little squares together and getting them to match up.¬† I have to admit that while quilting this quilt, I fell in love the with colors and have decided that I MUST make a black and rust quilt for myself (add it to the list).

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And, here is Charlotte’s quilt for her grandson.¬† The critters are made with minky fabric, so they are soft and enticing for a baby.¬† We decided to just stitch in the ditch around the pinwheels and cornerstone blocks, echo around the animals, and quilt swirls to look like blowing wind near the pinwheels.

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Do you have a favorite from any of these?

Latest works

So, this is what I have been busy with lately. ¬†Mary made this quilt for her brother-in-law who needs a kidney transplant but, through a long and drawn-out process already, cannot seem to find a suitable donor. ¬†If any of you are willing to give up a kidney to help him, please contact me and I forward your information on to her. ¬† Mary chose straight line quilting for her modern quilt. ¬†I learned a ton from working on her quilt. ¬†The first problem I encountered was puckers in her flannel backing. ¬†The puckers ran along the seam lines of the quilt top. ¬†Well, I can’t have puckers, so I ripped those stitches out and chatted with a fellow quilter about what to do about those puckers. ¬†She said to raise the hopping foot on my longarm machine when working with flannel, thick batting, etc. ¬†Duh! ¬†If your hopping foot is smashing the layers as you try to travel along the quilt, it is only going to drag, warp, and pucker the fabric… AND your thread will constantly break, which happened to me. ¬†When it was all done, I was so glad to be able to quilt with flannel. ¬†I love the feel of it and think it makes a very comforting quilt, especially as a gift. ¬†Some people refuse to quilt with it, I found out, but I think I am going to go buy some flannel for my own quilts now. ¬†My whole idea of quilts and quilting is comfort; comfort for sleeping, comfort for your emotions and spirit, and warmth as you wrap your quilt around you in a hug.

The other issue I had was that I had ordered a cross-hatching ruler online and was waiting for it to arrive.  I had tried using the other various rulers I have, and they worked fine, but, let me tell you, they did not work nearly as well as this one.  I was surprised at how quickly the rest of the quilting went when I had this crosshatching ruler from Quilters Rule.

If you look closely, you will see the base of the ruler pushed against the roller bar on the left side of the picture. ¬†The ruler attaches to the base for straight line quilting. ¬†Now, it’s called a cross hatch ruler, but for modern quilts with straight lines, this is the perfect tool for the job and worth every penny. ¬†Believe me, this simplified the job of stitching at an angle on a longarm so much! ¬†If you don’t already have one for your quilting business, I highly recommend buying one! ¬†Check them out at:¬†http://www.quiltersrule.com/template/mqt-chr.html

The other quilt I’ve been working on was made by Barbara with jelly roll fabric. ¬†She is giving it as a gift to her daughter-in-law for Christmas and wanted the family names and personal notes written on it. ¬†Can you see the writing in this picture?


Even her backing fabric is cute and goes well with the chartreuse thread she chose.


So, now that I’ve got those done, it’s back to the Opportunity Quilt that I need to finish. ¬†I am working at our guild’s quilt show later this week, so I’d better get busy.