Kaleidoscope Block – a variation of the Dresden Plate

My students were hankering after a fresh new project – me too, so after a swift scan of the internet we decided to have a go at a variation of the Dresden Plate block. It reminded my of a kaleidoscope, so that’s what I have called my version.


I wanted to make a big bold version of the block, but not too big a project. So I used 2.5 strips, cut from fat eighths from the new range, Lincoln Lane.

I cut them into 2.5 inch strips, and then sorted them into two groups of five, and then I started to stitch up a storm…This would be a good way to use up a jelly roll if you wanted to make a big quilt, I wanted only 3 blocks to make a bed runner.

Here I’m appliqueing the block using a blanket stitch on my machine…

When stitched all round, I like to cut the background fabric away from my block – carefully! I love these comfy large handled Clover scissors, which have a really sharp fine point ideal for getting into tricky corners.

Having hand-stitched the centre circle by hand, I flipped it over again and trimmed away the bulk. By doing this, it ensures that when you come to quilt it, the wadding will be able to loft up into the design making lovely textural contours.

The left over strips worked out just right to make two pointy ends to finish my bed runner.

Two lovely blocks side by side, my husband has just had a clip round the ear because he said would I like a cup of tea and could he fetch his darts…

Here we are, loads of work done, and the whole quilt top is pieced together, and up for a view on my design wall. I’m going to sign off here and go on a tacking adventure, it’s Sunday tomorrow and with a bit of luck, I can get it machine quilted and bound ready to show off to the students on Monday morning!
Just to make you jealous, on the menu for lunch, we’re having home-made curried parsnip soup, (I just sent the boy to go to the plots to dig me a fine basket of parsnips,) and to follow, pear and blackberry crumble and thick, yummy cream…
Looking forward to a lovely day at the Sunflower cabin!

Comments 9

  1. Looks lovely Maggie, but as a previous comment made – only half of it shows as you scroll down; but you’re doing really well – I couldn’t have even got half way to creating a BLOG page, so well done you dear friend!!!!
    PS Love the comment about darts, bless him! LOL xx

    1. Post

      Yes, I’m going to have to let Jamie in on this and sort it out, he does the “Back end ” stuff, I just do the pretty bits, pictures scans and words. A lot to learn but finding it very satisfying. Would be nice if you could come, couldn’t you kindly move back to Letchworth please?! x

  2. That variation is lovely. I like your new website a lot – no problems viewing it on an iPad! Xx

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      Thank you Jackie, I’ve enjoyed doing the work of it, which will of course be ongoing… I have a lot of products to upload, and it’s very time consuming work. But I love playing with words and pictures, so the blog will be a source of great pleasure, had lovely feedback and it only began yesterday, no day before, I think…

    2. Thanks so much Jacky, I’m enjoying it very much though it’s been and still is quite a steep learning curve! I try to do a bit more every day, haven’t got many products yet, I’ll get there. Good to hear from you. Have you stopped doing your blog now? I used to enjoy reading it…x

    1. Yes Roob, I believe it will, just dying to make up a different variation that is bobbing about in my head…

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