Saturday, May 1, 2010

Plate Making

I worked on the Dresden plate block today. It's pretty exciting how it's turning out. These could be kind of like potato chips--hard to stop at just one.

Let me show you my homemade template. Because I'm cheap like that. Seriously though, I wanted to see if I could take my mom's construction paper pattern and modify it so I could assemble the blocks like the tutorials I've seen. That is, you fold the piece right sides together, stitch across the top, and turn and press it into the pointed shape. So I traced her piece onto cardstock, extended the sides, and cut it straight across the top. Then I made a sample. Although it looked fine, it was too big at the outer edge and wouldn't lie flat.

It seemed to me that my template needed to be a bit curved at the top to adjust for this. So I made another one with a slight curve. Bingo! It was a winner!

Here they are side by side. A subtle difference, but a significant effect.

Last evening, I cut out my fabric. I used spray starch for the first time. That stuff is kinda awesome. It gave my fabric, especially the vintage, just the right amount of crispness, so it was easier to trace the template and arrange (and rearrange) the pieces.

As for the layout, I was going to throw all the fabrics into one block, but after a good night's sleep, I decided to go with 3 repetitions of 6 fabrics. My plate has 18 blades.

Well, you know I couldn't stop there. I had to sew them together. And then I had to choose a background fabric.

And make a center.

Then I had to change my mind (it's the law) and make a different center.

I stopped short of sewing the plate onto the background, but I did experiment on my tester sample with invisible thread in the top and Isacord in the bobbin.

It's going to a pink and purple kind of way.


  1. Can't wait to see your finished "plate"! The pics so far look awesome - and I'm a firm believer of tracing in mechanical pencil, so I completely agree with you about "kiss my..."!!

  2. Ooh...I love the fabric with the purple irises! I suppose that's one of the vintage and I can't get it here...

  3. Nice quilting (and pics and blogging) :D
    I have tried a million quilting pencils and markers and ...still go with a sharpie or a mechanical pencil any day of the week. Your "kiss my bic" would be a good blog button!!

  4. Hey, anytime you can rock with pink and purple, it's going to be good. :-)

  5. Love to see the process. And, hon, using that bic pen won't hurt because that line will never see the light of day again. Don't let the quilt police haunt you. :)

  6. Look wonderful! I love the irreverence! It's interesting that the curves made the difference.


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