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A Dresden Quilt #5 – (quilt reveal) + Free Quilt Pattern

Last week I finished my fifth Dresden quilt.  This is the second time that I’ve used small blocks as my background and also the second time that I’ve done a low volume background.  See my last quilt here.

I did try some new center methods though….

I can’t even begin to describe how excited I am about this particular quilt block.  This might be the single best block I’ve ever made.  Ever.

For the majority of the centers in this quilt’s Dresden plates, I used just a basic center, but I made a mistake and didn’t cut enough and had already put all the fabrics back in their places.  I moaned and groaned and rolled my eyes at myself which I am always in the habit of doing, cursed myself for being a bit OCD about fabrics being put away in a timely manner, and after a whole lotta sighing I walked over to a basket where I keep fabrics pieces that have been interfaced.

This basket of interfaced fabrics came to be when I’ve cut too many for other projects and they start to pile up.  I dug through, hoping something might work and found this and a few others similar to it that I had cut for Wandering Quilt last year.  A slow smile begin to spread across my face…….. bingo.

For details on the fabrics used in this quilt visit this page.

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I videoed myself making this quilt beginning to end on Instagram.  You can find it in my ‘highlights’ on my feed here.

A few of you asked about a Dresden pattern.  I’m not sure if that I could sell that seeing as how I got the whole Dresden making process on my blog for free.  However, I did think that I could probably give you the directions in this post as far as fabric requirements, and direct you to the video tutorials that I do have to help you along your way if making a quilt full of Dresden plates is something you want to do.

So here we go…..

Large Throw Dresden Plate quilt – measures 60×72″

Blocks measure 12.5″.

Total of 30 blocks.

Only 22 of the blocks feature a Dresden plate.  The other 8 blocks are left for negative space.

  • (20) 1/4 yards of low volume
  • (22) 3.5″ x width of fabric strips (feel free to use scraps if you don’t have the WOF strips)
  • (22) 5″ish squares for centers (I always use scraps for the centers)
  • fusible adhesive (I use this kind)
  • 1/2 yard for binding
  • 66×78″ piece of batting (I use this batting)
  • 4 yards for backing

Cutting Instructions
  • From each 1/4 yard of low volume cut a 6.5″ strip of fabric.  Subcut each strip into (6) 6.5″ squares.
  • From each 3.5″ strip of fabric cut (10) Dresden blades. (I use this Dresden ruler)



Background Piecing Instructions
  1. Sew all your 6.5″ squares into pairs.  Press the seams on half your pairs to the left and half your pairs to the right.
  2. Sew your sets of pairs together, making a 4-patch quilt block.  Press.

You will have (30) 4-patch blocks.

Dresden Plate Instructions
  1. Group Dresden blades into sets (10 blades each) and then pair two sets together.  You want 20 blades per Dresden plate using two different fabrics.
  2. Fold each Dresden blade in half and sew 1/4″ on the longest “short” side.
  3. Turn blades inside out and press.
  4. Sew blades together.  Sew the last two blades together to form the circle.  Press all seams in one direction.

Sewing plate on background
  1. Top stitch each plate to a background block.

  1. Fuse your 5″ squares centers with your fusible adhesive (follow manufacturers instructions)
  2. Cut a 4″ circle from each square.
  3. Remove paper adhesive and fuse circle onto the middle of your Dresden plate blocks.
  4. Using a decorative stitch, top stitch around the edge of your circle.

If you require a video tutorial of this process, please visit this post.

Quilt Assembly
  1. Lay out your blocks 5 across and 6 down.
  2. Sew each row together.  Press seams in alternating directions per row.
  3. Sew rows together.
  4. Make your backing to measure 66×78″
  5. Baste your quilt in your preferred method (view my basting method here).
  6. Quilt as desired (find a free motion quilting tutorial here).
  7. From your binding fabric, cut (7) 2.5″ strips.  Sew them end to end and make your binding.  Bind your quilt (here is a machine binding tutorial).


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If you have further questions about Dresden plate making, please visit this page.

If you make a Dresden plate quilt with this pattern, please tag it on Instagram with the #ADresdenQuilt and don’t forget to tag me too.  I’d love to see your version!



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  1. Melanie, your Dresden #5 is simply beautiful! There’s that awesome center square, but I love them all. Talk about an heirloom. Congratulations to you! And to think I almost donated the Dresden plate tool that I’ve had for about six years that’s still in the package. I plan to make a color wheel quilt using Liberty fabric, so maybe I should make it using Dresdens. Love your blue toes!

  2. I love, love all of these dresden quilts. I’ve been trying to decide what kind of quilt to do for my daughter and she keeps changing her mind on what she likes, then saw me looking at one of your posts and said “that’s what I want!” So my question is and maybe I should just do more research but if I wanted to make this for a queen size bed so my question is will this be easy to complete doing it in queen size. I need to do the math. but knowing the little I know about quilting one uses a 1/4 in seam allowance so your 12.5 block would be down to 12 block correct. From that I think I can figure out how many squares to cut. I just don’t want to end up doing this wrong. Thanks in advanced. I love all of your stuff and you seem like one of the sweetest people around!

    1. What size quilt are you making? Nevermind! I’ll list bed sizes: twin quilt (42) blocks, 6 across, 7 down, comes to 72×84″. full/queen quilt (56) blocks, 7 across, 8 down, comes to 84×96″.

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