One More Vortex Dresden Quilt

I seem to go back to making dresden plate quilts over and over again! I created my red and white Modern Vortex quilt in 2012 as the result of a blog challenge to work with dots. Well, those dots became the setting triangles with my red and white strip pieced dresden block center stage!

A single block set on point with pieced setting triangles. No funky templates or difficult stitching. My pattern as I taught it for my workshop students teaches a simple way to make those pieced triangles. It looks like I appliquéd that dresden block into those triangles, doesn't it? An old trick that goes back 20 years from my quilting magazine days.

Modern Vortex Quilt: 28" x 28"
 Here is the quilt by itself. No extra borders. I've now added the HARD COPY VORTEX pattern in my Etsy shop. 12 well illustrated pages with the multi-sized acrylic template.

Modern Vortex. Block Size: 20" x 20". Set on point: 28" x 28"
Here is the block in blue and white:
20" block in blue and white

Then I made a few variations, one being inspired by Jane Hauprich's multi-colored one.

Multi-colored Vortex by Jane. No borders. Gorgeous quilting!
I played around with some border prints. Made a few quilt blocks and one quilt. I used a longer ruler with a 10" height and cut some VERY old border print from my stash. When you use a border print, you have to cut wedges for TWO blocks to get enough wedges (20) for one block. That's because you are flip-flopping the ruler up and down. My pattern has a tip sheet for working with border prints.

Dresdens cut from border prints. Info included in pattern for making this.
Here is what I did with the leftover wedges from the pink quilt. I plan on quilting this with "ghost" dresdens in the white squares. Not brave enough to start this yet.

My little pink dresden snake!
I made a Dresden Quilt for Red Rooster. Sometimes they send me VERY small pieces of sample fabric and expect me to do something with them. Ha! I sure fooled them with this. Who says the backgrounds all have to be the same color?

Fleur du Jardin for Red Rooster
I squeezed the life out of the fabrics and made everything work. And I pieced the back, too!

Pieced back of my Fleur du Jardin quilt
I put an extra outer border on my own multi-colored Modern Vortex and quilted it last week. It is about 38" x 38". The large scale prints give it such movement!

Multi-colored Modern Vortex with large flowers in the border
Here is a close-up of the center. First, the units:

Multi-colored units
Center of my multi-colored Vortex
I now have this pattern in my Etsy shop: The Modern Vortex. It is an 18 page pattern with several quilt variations: two color, multi-colored, how to make dresdens using a border print, etc. Check it out. This is a digital version. The paper template is included, but if you have any 18 degree dresden ruler, you can use that.

I now have the HARD COPY VORTEX pattern WITH multi-sized dresden ruler included in my Etsy shop. What does the ruler look like? See #4 below. This has an 8" height and is for an 18˚ wedge (so that 20 wedges make a complete circle). Cost: $15 plus only $2 postage (I checked with USPS for First Class. USA orders only.)


  1. Glad to see this is pattern. I saw someone who took a class with you make this, but I thought it was only a class pattern. It's amazing. I need to add this to my purchase and make list.

  2. Hi Debby! I think I saw the same piece that Anja did, as Preeti attended your class and shared her project on her blog and told us about the class. I am really drawn (into the vortex) by the multi-colored versions. Jane's color placement, quilting and even that fun binding just brings the whole quilt to life for me and I would make some similar to that. You version of the multi-colored fabrics is wonderful as well, and definitely a bit bigger which is always nice too. ~smile~ Roseanne

  3. I love this Vortex in the 2 color. And, Dresden plate is one of my favorite patterns. Got to put on my to do list - which seems to be getting longer by the minute.

  4. Hi, Debby! I enjoy seeing Dresden-based quilts you and others have made. The possibilities are endless! I'm working on a multi-linked-circle variation with directional fabric. It will be ready for viewing some day. I think the pattern with acrylic template is a good idea, and not much more cost for anyone who doesn't yet have the template, or who wants a "spare" one. Thanks as always for continued inspiration! (janeherbst at roadrunner dot com)

  5. I'd definitely be interested in a printed pattern with an acrylic template for $15 plus $2-3 postage. I have been fascinated with the the Vortex Dresden Quilt for years.

  6. Way cool and the pattern and template price is more than reasonable!

  7. Hi Debby, you are a gifted designer and appreciate your work. I love this pattern and I would be interested in the print and mail version with the multi size ruler. thanks for asking.

  8. So many beautiful possibilities. It must be impossible to make an ugly one!


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