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Thread: Need help with Dresden plate

  1. #1
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    I have recently made (2) Dresden Plates and for some reason when I finish the plate it will not lay flat and I have to go back and adjust several seams. Please tell what I'm doing wrong. I am using the Easy Dresden plate template by Darlene Zimmerman; trying to keep 1/4" seams, etc. and I cannot figure out my problem. I have watched tutorials on DP and they don't mention this problem..thanks for any info you have.

  2. #2
    Super Member MellieKQuilter's Avatar
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    I ironed, ironed, ironed mine. And then ironed it some more. :) And then it laid flat quite nicely. :)

  3. #3
    Power Poster QuiltE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by betty jo
    I have recently made (2) Dresden Plates and for some reason when I finish the plate it will not lay flat and I have to go back and adjust several seams. Please tell what I'm doing wrong. I am using the Easy Dresden plate template by Darlene Zimmerman; trying to keep 1/4" seams, etc. and I cannot figure out my problem. I have watched tutorials on DP and they don't mention this problem..thanks for any info you have.
    If you've cut it right and sewn it correctly, then it should lay flat. Just a thread difference in each of those cuts and/or seams can add up to the plate not laying flat.

    Accuracy and attention to detail are critical!

  4. #4
    Super Member just_the_scraps_m'am's Avatar
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    is there any sort of arrow or line on the pattern that would show you where you place the pattern on the straight of grain???

    i'm guessing you're not attentive to the grain lines in the fabric...

  5. #5
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    No arrow, but a line at the top of the template for each size you want to cut. I put the 6" line on the edge of my material and still a problem. It's for sure I'm doing something correctly

  6. #6
    Super Member just_the_scraps_m'am's Avatar
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    another thing you may want to address is pressing
    it is simple to DISTORT fabric if you iron incorrectly
    if you use the search feature at the top of this page, you may come up with a large discussion on use of an iron...

  7. #7
    Super Member just_the_scraps_m'am's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by betty jo
    No arrow, but a line at the top of the template for each size you want to cut. I put the 6" line on the edge of my material and still a problem. It's for sure I'm doing something correctly
    if you are familiar with bias,straight of grain,lengthwise grain,etc
    you can ignore this link:

    http://sewing.about.com/od/beginner1/p/fabricgrain.htm

  8. #8
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    Are all seams pressed in the same direction? This might cause it to not lay perfectly flat, too.

  9. #9
    Super Member piepatch's Avatar
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    Do you mean the plate alone won't lay flat, or is it after you attach it to the background square and add the middle circle?

  10. #10
    Super Member piepatch's Avatar
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    Do you mean the plate alone won't lay flat, or is it after you attach it to the background square and add the middle circle?

  11. #11
    Super Member Glassquilt's Avatar
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    Make sure each quarter is 90deg - lay a square ruler on it and trim with your rotary cutter. Sew two quarters together and make sure the straight edge is straight. If necessary lay you long ruler down and trim. When you sew both half together the block should lie flat.

  12. #12
    Super Member HummerGardenCrafts's Avatar
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    Do you press all your seams all the same way? If you don't they won't lay flat either.

  13. #13
    Super Member QuiltnLady1's Avatar
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    I heavily starch the fabric before I start cutting. It is hard to distort if it is board :).

  14. #14
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    I cheat on my dresden plates. I make quarter plates and square them up into 4 squares. Some edges pieces will be a little bigger or smaller, but it will lay flat and by the time you quilt it you will have forgotten it wasn't perfect.

  15. #15
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    May not be the "correct" way to do it, but when I made mine, they didn't lay flat so I just added another blade to it. They laid flat after that.

  16. #16
    Super Member JanetM's Avatar
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    When you cut your dresdan blades you create bias edges. Be very careful while sewing them together not to stretch these edges. Some people like to heavily starch them before sewing to stabilize those edges. Also, be sure you are pressing and not ironing.

  17. #17
    Super Member Deb watkins's Avatar
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    Another thing to consider - some plates are 16 blades while another pattern is 20. The plates in my winter Dresden swap are 16, one quilter had the ruler which made 20, no wonder it didn't lay flat.

  18. #18
    Power Poster blueangel's Avatar
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    Starch it and iron it good.

  19. #19
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    check your fabrics if one has any poly content it will shrink
    with each pressing eventually causing all kinds of trouble.
    Is your thread 100% cotton?
    If sewing by machine are you lifting the fabric as you join them
    [To make the curves in hats the fabric is lifted up as fed into the foot]

    Quote Originally Posted by betty jo
    I have recently made (2) Dresden Plates and for some reason when I finish the plate it will not lay flat and I have to go back and adjust several seams. Please tell what I'm doing wrong. I am using the Easy Dresden plate template by Darlene Zimmerman; trying to keep 1/4" seams, etc. and I cannot figure out my problem. I have watched tutorials on DP and they don't mention this problem..thanks for any info you have.

  20. #20
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    It wont lay flat after I sew the 20 blades together before I add the circle and before I put it on my square. I press a lot too but I may be pressing the wrong way and stretching it a bit. gonna check out some info on the Board

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by mytwopals
    Are all seams pressed in the same direction? This might cause it to not lay perfectly flat, too.
    No, I have been pressing them open and I probably should say ironing them open. think maybe this would help if I did it all in the same direction?

  22. #22
    Power Poster QuiltE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vjw65
    check your fabrics if one has any poly content it will shrink ]
    when did poly's start shrinking?

  23. #23
    Junior Member K.P.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by betty jo
    I have recently made (2) Dresden Plates and for some reason when I finish the plate it will not lay flat and I have to go back and adjust several seams. Please tell what I'm doing wrong. I am using the Easy Dresden plate template by Darlene Zimmerman; trying to keep 1/4" seams, etc. and I cannot figure out my problem. I have watched tutorials on DP and they don't mention this problem..thanks for any info you have.
    Something you might try that has helped me before is when you are sewing the blades together, start from alternating ends each tie you make a seam; with the first 2 sets of blades, start sewing from the outside tip of the blade, on the next set, start sewing from the inside tip...this technique helps a lot with a few other blocks that meet near the center, like the Leymoine Star, so it might also help with Dresden Plate.

  24. #24
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    I read someplace to put 2 blades together and don't put blade to blade to blade. But 2 + 2+ 2+ etc. then put them together. You ask why? Can't remember that part. Not sure this will help but it would not hurt to try.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by QuiltE
    Quote Originally Posted by betty jo
    I have recently made (2) Dresden Plates and for some reason when I finish the plate it will not lay flat and I have to go back and adjust several seams. Please tell what I'm doing wrong. I am using the Easy Dresden plate template by Darlene Zimmerman; trying to keep 1/4" seams, etc. and I cannot figure out my problem. I have watched tutorials on DP and they don't mention this problem..thanks for any info you have.
    If you've cut it right and sewn it correctly, then it should lay flat. Just a thread difference in each of those cuts and/or seams can add up to the plate not laying flat.

    Accuracy and attention to detail are critical!
    Yep......what she said. Just don't beat yourself up, quilting is a journey, you practice and you will see your dresdens improve.

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