English paper piecing by hand OR machine: prep steps (video)

You’ve seen them online, at shops, and at shows: glorious English-paper-pieced quilts bursting with color and texture. They’re just WOW!

Now the new trend in English paper piecing is here: Dresdens. And with all the success that best-selling author Katja Marek has had with EPP hexagons, you know she’s on top of the Dresden trend!

Paper Lanterns Wall Quilt
Paper Lanterns Wall Quilt

Her new quilt-along, Rainy Days and Sun Days, is all about exploring the infinite ways you can piece Dresden blocks. In her latest book, Distinctive Dresdens, you’ll find 26 gorgeous renditions:

Blocks from Distinctive Dresdens
Eight of the 26 blocks in the book

Distinctive DresdensAnd because Katja is such a pro at math, at sewing, and at figuring out the steps for you, she’s made it so you can easily create Dresden blocks too—and you can sew them by hand OR by machine. YES!

The first step is all about preparing pieces for sewing. Depending on your sewing method, the prep steps differ a bit. We caught up with Katja at Quilt Market and she demonstrated the two different ways she prepares her Dresden wedges: for hand sewing and for machine sewing (which are also covered in the book with step-by-step photos). Watch below:

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Once you’ve prepped your pieces, the sewing can begin, and you’ll find complete step-by-step directions for hand and machine sewing in Distinctive Dresdens. Then you can create gorgeous Dresden projects like this:

Good Morning Place Mats
Good Morning Place Mats

…and this:

Class-Act Cushions
Class-Act Cushions

…and this!

Clamoring for More Quilt
Clamoring for More Quilt

Katja just launched her quilt-along for Distinctive Dresdens, and it’s not too late to join the fun! You can find all the quilt-along details here, and you can join her Facebook group for the quilt-along here.

Rainy Days and Sun Days Quilt-Along

Dresden blocks: by hand or machine? Tell us in the comments how you’ll make yours!


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