V and Co.: how to: finish a dresden plate


we survived the 4 day weekend.

we even got to leave town briefly to enjoy an indoor water park. 

then i came home and in between dinner and nighttime routines, while editing some pictures i got to yell at the season finale of downton abbey


what the heck. 

i knew it was coming but i didn’t know how or when, and then i had to explain to the husband between ugly sobs, that everything was just finally working out and then this happened. he looked at me like i had two heads and was speaking “blah blah blah they killed the character blah blah blah…” (for any of you who don’t know what i’m talking about please don’t mind me and any other woman walking around all upset for the next couple of weeks while muttering “downton abbey stupid  Season 3.” and if you haven’t watched it all and are planning to watch it. i’ve kept all the characters names out of it so i don’t ruin it for you.)

okay wait, what am i blogging about today? oh thats right dresden plates. not downtown. i knew it was a “D” word. 

okay 2 weeks ago we talked about making the dresden plate

now this week we are going to talk about appliquéing the dresden plate on and what in the world do we do about that gaping open middle we have going on there.

okay first things first: 

lets talk about how to appliqué the plate onto your project. weather it be a quilt, a pillow, on a bag or like shown above, on a zipper pouch, we need to make sure that plate gets appliquéd on.

i like hand appliqué but i also like how it looks when i use my sewing machine to sew it on as well. 

i will show you both ways.

how to hand appliqué your dresden plate:

what you will need to appliqué

– fabric to applique your dresden plate onto.

-needle and thread.

*optional batting

-with your needle and thread go through all layers and catch one of the edges of your dresden plate petal

**(if you are doing a quilt block it will just be the dresden plate and the block fabric. if you are making a pillow you may want to add batting. if you are making a zipper bag you can add the fusible webbing now or after you do this step)

-make sure you catch the very edge of your dresden plate fabric so that your stitches don’t show.

**i like to start on the point you can start anywhere but that’s where i usually start.

-go right back down where you started (i like to go down right next to where the thread came up from when you pulled it through to start)

-move over about 1/8″ over and come up through all layers like you did the first time and repeat the first step

-continue to do this all around the outside of your dresden plate. 

don’t have the patience to do it by hand….

how to machine appliqué your dresden plate:

*using your 1/4″ foot (in bernina world it is your #37 foot)

-use the inside notch of the foot as show in the picture above as your guide to get a great top stitch. this is how i always get the (in my eyes) the perfect top stitch

-carefully sew around your outer edge. 



now lets talk about that raw edge middle

how to dresden middles:

most commonly used for the middles of dresden plates are circles. 

first i am going to show you how to do a finished (not a raw edge) circle for your middle

i really like picking the same fabric as my back ground for my middle so that it looks like the plate is a circle with no middle

-but if you do a color middle you get a really cute flower looking plate. both cute and both very easy to do.

lets get started:

what you will need:

-circle making object. (ruler or something around the house! i have been known to use old CD’s (cause who uses those anymore when everything is digital these days!) or glasses, or bowls. here the perfect circle size was attained by using a mason jar.

-pellon 807 (found in most craft stores especially fabric stores)

-erasable ink pen

-one piece of fabric your choice for the middle.

– i used a mason jar to trace my circle with my erasable pen.

-draw a circle on either side of your fabric (i’ve done both. my favorite is to draw the line on the right side of the fabric because i place the pellon on top. but i’ll show you this time doing it on the wrong side. really its just preference decide for yourself what you like best.)

-after you have drawn your circle on the wrong side of your fabic , place the pellon on the right side of your fabric. 

-with your drawn line facing up, sew ON THE DRAWN line of the circle.

-cut out your circle, with a 1/8″ to 1/4″ seam around it.

-pinch your pellon webbing and cut a slit big enough to pull inside out your sewn circle. 

**be gentle when you pull it through because the webbing is more on the delicate side than the sturdy side! 

-place in the middle of your dresden plate

-iron down, and appliqué just like i showed you in the hand appliqué section on the dresden plate section, or machine sew it. 

how about a hexagon middle:

and of course i love the hexagon middle. how i created this hexagon is the same way i made the hexagons in the hexagon applique bag

-follow the same steps we did for the circle center for the hexagon center for the middle, make sure you make the hexagon big enough to cover all the raw edges of the middle though!

-and of course to finish the middle you can do either hand appliqué like i showed you in the beginning of this tutorial, or you can machine it just like i did in this one pictured, following the same steps for machine appliquéing your dresden plate on.

last but not least how about having some texture??: 

how to make a hand twisted flower middle for your dresden plate:

what you will need:

-1 to 2 strips of 2″ X WOF (width of fabric) 

-needle and thread matching in color of your cut strips. 

 -grab your strip of fabric on one end.

-fold in half that end.

-fold in half again the same end.

this is your starting bottom center.

 -keeping your folded end folded… fold over the rest of your tail over once.

(Thats a whole heck of of a lot of folds. fold fold fold fold. :))

– place one stitch in through all these layers

(i don’t cause i dont need it to keep in place anymore. i guess thats the beauty of doing something over and over and over and over again!)

 -twist your long tail (loosely) a couple of times.

-bring it back to the started folded edge point.

-this is the back side view. 

-place another stitch with your needle and thread. 

**hint: i like to always try to hide my stitches by first off using thread close in color, but second, but placing my stitches under a twisted edge, sometimes only making the stitch go through a few of the layers and not all the way to the top. 

this may take a little bit of practice. 🙂

 -twist again a couple of times (loosely still!!!) and now place the twisted fabric behind the center you have created. continue to place a few stitches every time you place your new twisted fabric onto the center (that is now growing!)

 -here’s a close up of my stitch where the needle only goes in through the bottom part of the twisted fabric.

-continue to twist and place stitches to keep the flower together.

-if you don’t have enough with one strip, tuck under the tail and put a few stitches to keep it in place. then continue a new strip (just like you did the first one) only this time just continue to go on the outer part of the flower. 

-make it as big as you need it

-when you have a big enough flower, cut the excess strip, tuck under the flower and stitch in place.

 -pin onto the middle of your appliquéd dresden plate.

– just like you hand appliquéd your circle, do this to the twisted flower. do so around your outer part of the flower.

**ideally this center would be for things that are not going to go through the washer due to the raw edges and fraying. 

ahem, but look how insanely cute it looks on this little zipper pouch. 


hey heres a bonus! 

dont want to have a middle??

melissa created a double dresden delight where she had both ends the finished points!

pretty cool me thinks! i may give this a try.

alright there you have it.

 i think i’ll make a little doll quilt with the ones i have left over that i made and surprise the daughter. or another zippered pouch, a girl can never have enough zippered pouches.

just sayin.

where will you put your dresden plate??

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