How to Quilt Dresden Plates and Medallion Stars :: Quilt Your Own Adventure, Week 1

When a quilt has a strong focal point, deciding how to quilt is can feel paralyzing. You want to quilt it with confidence because you know every viewer will be paying attention. However, sometimes quilting with confidence is easier said than done-- that's why a quilting plan can make all the difference! Come stitch with me!

PS This post is part of Quilt Your Own Adventure, where I am quilting my Camp Oda May Moda Bakeshop QAL quilt to inspire you with a variety of quilting ideas for common traditional blocks. Be sure to check out the original post to see the full lineup of content here. 

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How to Quilt Dresden Plates and Medallion Stars with HollyAnne Knight of String & Story

Every single quilter is capable of beautifully quilting his or her quilts, and it's my job to guide you to do that with confidence! Let's take a look at some ways to tackle the focal point of a quilt, like dresden plates or a medallion star, to make your quilt shine!

How to Quilt Dresden Plates and Medallion Stars with HollyAnne Knight of String & Story

Throughout this series, I am quilting on my Choose Your Own Adventure Quilt from this year's Moda Bakeshop Summer QAL. These posts and videos, however, will inspire you for a variety of quilts!

Video

Quilting Plans

Practice your quilting on paper before you ever put a needle to your beautiful quilt top. By drawing your plan in advance, you can stitch with confidence! I've arranged the plans by "level," and I've included both Dresden Plate and Medallion Star plans side by side. When I draw a quilting plan, I'm deciding what parts of the quilt I want to emphasize and how I want to show off the piecing of the quilt. These plans are meant to inspire you-- feel free to use them, mix them up, or design your own plans using some of the ideas you see here!

To read more about How to Make a Quilting Plan, check out this post. 

By the way, I looooove lots of quilting! I use 100% cotton Aurifil thread and either cotton or wool batting by Hobbs. All natural fibers stay soft and drapey, even with heavy quilting. If you prefer less dense quilting, you can enlarge, omit, or adapt motifs as you prefer. And don't forget to make use of the weekly live videos during this series to ask any questions you may have about adapting designs. 

How to Quilt Dresden Plates and Medallion Stars with HollyAnne Knight of String & Story

Intro

The Intro level quilting plans use the four motifs from my FREE online Intro to FMQ workshop plus walking foot lines. These plans are perfect starting points if you are brand new to Free Motion Quilting. 

Stitch in the ditch on the log cabin blocks and around both the small and large star to emphasize the star shape. Then, FMQ the swirls, switchbacks, and meanders. 

Use a walking foot to create smaller plates on the dresden and then to outline the whole shape about a quarter of an inch from the outside. Then, do a simple, tight, FMQ meander in the background to let the dresden "pop"

Moderate

The Moderate level uses the 10 motifs from my Beginner FMQ workshop plus walking foot lines. If you have been dabbling in FMQ for a little while and need an exciting push to take your skills to the next level, this is it!

Use your walking foot to create the crisscrossed grid lines in the center area and to "outline" the large star, then FMQ the ribbon candies, switchbacks, and square spirals. If you're unsure about how to mark the straight lines, try a tool like the Hera Marker. 

Decorate your dresden with elongated swirls, then use your walking foot to outline the dresden and create the simple straight-line background. If you're unsure about how to mark the straight lines, try a tool like the Hera Marker. 

Rockstar

In the Rockstar level, all bets are off-- I'm pulling all kinds of tricks out of my hat, so this level is designed for a confident, more experienced free motion quilter. 

Check out my post Intro to Feathers to make a simple feather spiral like this one. This plan is unique from the others here in that I chose to deemphasize the star shape and focus on the log cabins instead.

This plan is the epitome of contrasting motifs-- clean walking foot lines with luscious feathers

Think "bubbles" not pebbles to keep this block feeling airy

Use pearls (pebbles) and feathers for a decadent effect

Remember, draw your quilting plan several times of paper before you get started, then quilt one section, one motif at a time. Even the largest quilts get quilted a piece at a time. 

Share your quilting progress in the Quilting Rockstars Facebook Group! 

How to Quilt Dresden Plates and Medallion Stars with HollyAnne Knight of String & Story

PS Don't forget to pin this post so you can find it later!

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