Friday, September 19, 2014

EZ Dresden Ruler X Block Tutorial aka Hummingbird Block

Earlier today I posted a beautiful scrappy quilt designed and made by Squares and Triangles.  Below is the photo of that quilt.

She created this quilt using the EZ Dresden Ruler and a paper piecing method.   I will demonstrate a method different from hers to create your own scrappy quilt!  You will of course need The EZ Dresden Ruler shown below.

I am using two Over the Rainbow Batik Charm Packs by Moda from the fabulous 

I have made some little video clips to demonstrate how to do this. Sophie, our kitty, decided she needed to get in the picture so there is a bit of a break between one and two, but I think you will pick it right up.

If you are making a scrappy quilt, gather up your bits and cut yourself some 5" squares.  Light in one pile and medium and darks in another.  You will need four of your light 5 inch charms and four of your medium or dark 5 inch charms.  This will make 2 blocks that will measure 8.5" when complete and will finish in your quilt top at 8".


1.  Draw a line with a permanent marker down the center of your ruler, this will help line things up perfectly.  

2.  To keep it from sliding around, I use paper crafting adhesive micro dots on the bottom of my ruler .  It's very important to line your ruler up properly and not allow it to slip as you cut your fabric. There are lots of adhesive micro dots out there, you probably have some in your crafting supplies.  I like the micro dots because they are not overly sticky and yet they do the trick.  You can see a sample of the dot size on this photo below.  You may have another solution that works for you and that is fine.  The goal is to make sure your ruler does not slip.

3.  Do not stack and cut more than 4 charms at a time.  You will lose your accuracy if things are forced or are sliding around.  Be sure if you are cutting 4 pieces that you take the time to line them up carefully.  A little attention to detail makes for easy piecing later.

To square up your blocks you will lay your block as shown below, line your ruler up with the outside squares and trim off the excess with your rotary cutter as shown.  Each block should square up to 4.5".  

Tips for lining up your block:   

Line your ruler on the outside edge of the pinked edge of the charm square. (when you purchase charm squares they often come with a pinked edge which confuses people...cut to the outside edge and when you stitch, use that pinked edge as the point you measure from to get your 1/4" seam allowance.) 

Position your block as shown below and line your diagonal line on your ruler up with the upper right and lower left corners, then trim. Turn your block completely around so that the large end of your wedge piece is now in the upper left.  Again, line up your square on the diagonal, check to make sure that you have 4.5" showing on your ruler on both the upper left and lower right corner, then trim away the excess.  

Take your time with this process.  Getting a nice squared up block will help you piece things together accurately as you go along.   Chain piece all your blocks at one time, one side, then press that seam open and proceed to chain piece all your blocks on the other side, again press them all open at the same time.  Then, take your blocks, get comfortable, turn on the tv, some music or a quilting video from Youtube and get all your blocks trimmed.  Then you will be ready to stitch them together without interruption.  Quick as a wink you will have your quilt top finished!  

There is very little waste with these blocks, you can see the tiny bit of trimmings below. 

Now sew the top two blocks together and the bottom two blocks together and then press them with the seam going in opposite directions.  Now stitch your top two blocks to the bottom two blocks and press your seam open.  Should look like below.

I am playing on the design wall with some blocks today...Love the Fall Harvest feel of these fabrics.

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial!  We are giving away the EZ Dresden Ruler this month as our Monthly Quilt Tool giveaway.  Just leave a comment below or on our Facebook page at to be entered into the drawing.  There is nothing to purchase.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Dresden Tutorials and Inspirational Links

UPDATE!!!  New Giveaway!  We will be giving away the "Pine Fresh" charm pack by Sandy Gervais for Moda from the  Drawing will be held when we reach 900 LIKES on our Facebook page.  Don't miss out!  The last one went really quickly in under 24 hours!!!  You must LIKE our page, Comment on the post and SHARE with your friends.  It's really that simple!  Leave a comment on this blog post for an additional entry. Good Luck!  Check out for the NEWEST fabrics!

UPDATE!!!  THE WINNER OF THE "HELLO FALL" DRAWING IS CAROL HAYNES!   Be sure to check out ... If you are looking for a bargain...Oh My Gosh, their Flash Sales cannot be beat!  They have all the latest fabric collections from the Major Designers, great tutorials, fun ideas, free quilting patterns. They really are SEW MUCH MORE THAN FABRIC!

The WINNER of the $35.00 Gift Certificate to is Denise Essex-Mitchell!  Congratulations Denise!!!
* * *

Our Monthly Quilter's Tool Giveaway is for the EZ Dresden Ruler.

As I go along this month, I will post links below that I have featured on our Facebook page, so you will have one blog post to have as a reference point for fun things to do with this ruler!  There is just so much you can create and I think you will see that in the links below!  Keep checking back, I will add to the list as the month rolls along.

Quilt by Jenny Cameron

The Seasons, by Sarah Fielke from her book Material Obsessions 2
Photography by John Doughty

Sarah Fielke Inspiration

By Kelly Biscopink

Kelly Biscopink's Take on Dresden

Want to know more about Quilting History, check out The Project Gutenberg ebook:

Unknown Attribution
Quilty Inspiration. I do not know the origin of this photo, nor do I know the quilt designer, if someone has a clue, enlighten me and I will update this post, but I wanted to include it as it is so colorful and fun.

What could this look like if you used this technique with fabric?

There was no attribution for this quilt other than it was shown at the 2012 Pensacola Quilt Show, Happy to update if someone has more information.

Lisa Filion plays with Black and White backgrounds in her award winning polka dot dresden titled "A Few Of My Favorite Things", you can see her process on Flickr here:

Polka Dot Fabric, pretty button embellishment and the center cross hatch quilting really make this little pillow sing! By Lyndsey on Flickr here:

Lots of great close ups of the hand work by Amy Dame at Glitter, Vinyl and Thread on this Cheerful Dresden Mini. One Dresden, lots of echo! Fabulous! 

Fussy cut rose center and circular quilting add interest to this pretty polka dot pillow by Elsie's Girl here:

Another dotty piece in process at Quilternity's Place. Love the colors! There is not a finish photo but I'm anxious to see what she does with this UFO! View here:

What mommy or grandmother wouldn't love to make a little Dresden Doll Quilt like this? Sweet little dots for a red haired girl. You can see her work and her inspiration here:

Half Circle Arcs with plenty of dots! Rethink your quilting at Life in Technicolor here:

Don't toss out that selvage! Look at this cute little dotty selvage Dresden. Here:

Selvage and Dotty! Here you go! Inspiration here:

New to quilting? Never made a Dresden block before, need a little help or a refresher? Amy Gibson does a fine job of walking you through the process from start to finish. Tutorial Here:

Elizabeth Hartman does a fine illustration of how to create your center circle for your dresden. If you don't have pinking shears, after your stitch your circle, clip your seam close to your stitching and clip your seams every so often to allow for a beautiful curve when you turn your fabric. View Tutorial Here:

There are ALWAYS several ways to "skin a cat".  Another Method to create your center circle, this quilter uses a foil wrapped template, cuts her circle larger and then irons it over the edge of the template for a crisp circle, she then glues it in place before finishing.  You can see her tutorial here:

Thinking outside the box with this Winner! 

Penny for your thoughts! About this tiny Dresden Plate Doll Quilt by 
Martha Dellasega Gray, 2004 hand appliqued, hand quilted
19″ x 24″. View here

What to do with those chevrons and stripes? Here you go! Electric on that blue background! Inspiration here:

You can almost hear these birds chirping! Tiny Dresden table topper here:

Striped Dresden Medallion. There is no attribution for this and I have Google searched the image to no avail, but wanted to share. Simply using your EZ Dresden Ruler on a striped fabric will give you a similar effect. The circular quilting on the Dresden adds to the design.

Stacking your fabric can give you some very interesting Dresdens. Inspiration here:

Another Stack Dresden, no attribution available.

Learn how to create fabric illusions for Dresden wedge appliques by watching this video created by Nancy's Notions

Kaffe Fassett Dresden Plate Tutorial


It has been a fun Month of exploring the Dresden Plate, so many different ways to express your creativity.  I hope you have enjoyed these links.  If you have links about Dresden Plate Quilts, Tutorials or Inspiration, please leave them in the comments and we will add them to the page!  

I'll be adding sure to check back