Book Review + Giveaway: Whip Up Mini Quilts


Banner Miniquilts Book

Today is the first stop for the Whip Up Mini Quilts Blog Tour to celebrate the new book, Whip Up Mini Quilts by Kathreen Ricketson (published by Chronicle Books). I am a huge fan of her craft blog, Whip Up which posts up daily inspirations and all sorts of crafting finds. Whip Up Mini Quilts is hard to put down because it’s pages upon pages of inspiration as well as quilting lessons. The spiral bound book also comes with pattern templates so you can make each of the 20 mini quilt projects featured in the book. If you are itching to learn how to quilt, mini quilts are perfect because with their smaller scale you’ll be able to try out new and different techniques!
For the readers of CRAFT, Kathreen was so nice as to write up her “Essential Quilting Tools” which goes over all the essential tools and materials, as well as set up for optimum quilting.
Find out how to enter the book giveaway and read Kathreen’s list of quilting tools after the jump!

Book Giveaway Time!
Three lucky CRAFT readers will each receive a copy of the book, Whip Up Mini Quilts. Just tell us why you would like this book in the comments. All comments will be closed by Noon PST on Monday, June 7, 2010. The lucky winners will be announced later on the site. Good luck!
This giveaway is now closed. Here are the winners! Thanks to everyone who entered.
Also join Kathreen on her Whip Up Mini Quilts Blog Tour! Here are the rest of the dates:
June 2 – Crafty Pod
June 3 – Chronicle Books
June 4 – Indie Fixx
June 7 – Craft Sanity
June 8 – Hand Made by Alissa
June 9 – My Love for You
June 10 – Film in the Fridge
June 11 – The Haystack Needle
June 12 – West Coast Crafty
Whipup Quiltingtools Main
Essential Quilting Tools
by Kathreen Ricketson
Setting up your quilting / sewing tools is a gradual process. You don’t need everything at once, but there are so many new and interesting and cool quilting and sewing tools on the market that it is easy to get confused and go a bit mad with buying tools that you many never use. Here are my essential tools + a few nice extras for those just starting out with quilting.
Sewing Machine
A sewing machine is a must – unless you plan to hand sew. Your sewing machine doesn’t need to be expensive or new, or have a hundred different stitches, but it should be fairly sturdy and run smoothly. If you are planning on buying a new or second hand machine – do your research first, and be sure to test it out. Make sure that you can lower the feed dogs; this is essential if you are doing freestyle sewing such as quilting.
It is important to care for your machine. Take it in for a regular service and learn how to clean and oil it properly. Use the small tool kit (and manual) that comes with your machine (usually a small screwdriver, lint brush, sewing machine oil and tweezers) to maintain it, and change the needle before each new project. Make sure to keep your sewing machine manual handy. (Weeks Ringle has a neat tutorial on cleaning your sewing machine.)
You will need a couple of different presser feet such as:

  • Walking Foot: for sewing several layers of fabric; use this foot when quilting straight lines or sewing binding.
  • Embroidery or Darning Foot: for free-motion sewing such as stipple quilting or embroidery. Use this foot when lowering the feed dogs on your machine.

Sewing Machine Checklist
Needles: Make sure you have spare sewing machine needles at hand.
Tension check: The upper and lower tensions must be balanced to produce a perfect stitch. If you are unsure about how to measure the tension, check your user manual.
Bobbins: If you are working on a large project, it’s a good idea to fill a few bobbins with the correct thread so you don’t have to stop and start.
Lighting and comfort: Most machines come with a small light above the presser foot, but you will need additional lighting for working. Make sure your work surface and chair are at a comfortable height – to prevent bad posture and avoid a strained back.
Tools to have handy: Pins and a pincushion, scissors for cutting thread,
and a seam ripper are essential to have by your side so you don’t have to
keep getting up to look for things as you sew.
Thread: Use high-quality thread to keep your machine running smoothly. Cheap thread will break easily and often, and leave behind lint in your bobbin tray – you will have to clean it out more often.
Essential Tools
These tools are the essential basics you will need to get started on quilting and sewing projects.

  • Pins
  • Pincushion
  • Hand-sewing needles and a thimble in a variety of sizes and types
  • Scissors: small, sharp scissors, a really good pair of fabric scissors and a pair of utility scissors
  • Seam ripper
  • Iron: the key to creating professional-looking projects
  • Rotary cutter
  • Cutting mat
  • Quilting ruler

Whipup Quiltingtools 2
Extra tools and Products
If you want to experiment with new techniques and go behind basic piecing, here are some extra tools and products you might like to have on hand.

  • Embroidery or hand-quilting hoop
  • Bias tape maker
  • Quilting gloves or finger grips
  • Fabric marking pens
  • Tailors chalk
  • Freezer paper when ironed clings to fabric and leaves no residue, it is useful for appliqué, templates, and stencils.
  • Quilt basting spray is a quick and effective way to baste your quilts.
  • Fabric glue can sometimes be used in the place of pins – especially useful for applique.
  • Double-sided fusible webbing fuses fabric pieces together when pressed with a warm iron – very useful for applique.

210 thoughts on “Book Review + Giveaway: Whip Up Mini Quilts

  1. hearts and laserbeams says:

    i’ve always wanted to learn how to quilt, and i think this book would help me out by starting small!

  2. mikomiao says:

    one of my craft goals for 2010 is to learn to quilt. i’ve seen so many gorgeous modern quilts on Flickr but have been kind of scared to try. this sounds like the perfect book to help me start.

  3. Nessa says:

    I always wanted to quilt but it looks so hard. I think this book would help not make it seem like such a huge task.

  4. lolabang says:

    I’m always looking for ideas to use up scraps!

  5. TiaMaria says:

    I also have set myself the goal of learning to quilt this year. I followed whip-up’s month of mini-quilts with fascination and not a little despair, but my resolve hasn’t faltered (yet). I think this book would be a great help to me, since I’m the nerdy sort who needs to read about a thing before trying it.

  6. AJ in NYC says:

    my mom quilts and i want to surprise her with a small quilt for her 60th birthday in december, so this would be perfect!

  7. Audra says:

    Mini Quilts are a great way to play with scraps, charm squares or even use bits of clothing for ‘memory’ projects. Can’t wait to see the patterns! Always looking for great ideas to build off of! Love the pics!

  8. sy says:

    i saw this book in the bookstore and really like the projects in it, espeically the powerline quilts.

  9. littledolce says:

    The Whip Up site has been inspiring me in my crafty endeavours for a couple of years now, but quilting has been one thing that i’ve been a little scared to try. I think this book would help me to stop being silly and just get into it! xx

  10. Maddison Langford says:

    I am always starting quilts and not finishing them due to their size so mini quilts would be perfect to get my quilts made up gorgeous. I am always buying fabric packs too small for large quilts and as a hoarder I would love to show off all the fabrics I have collected.

  11. adva says:

    I love using up my scraps, and mini quilts are a wonderful way to do it.
    I also prefer small projects because i can complete them fast.
    This book looks like the perfect inspiration.

  12. Katie N says:

    This would be great to win. I have just started quilting and I love the contemporary designs for wall hangings and pillows.

  13. BrightStreetGeo says:

    Wait, scratch that. What I need is some steady bright spring/summer days. But since the weather’s been uncooperative this year, what I need now is this terrific book to help me make some indoor sunshine!

  14. LizG says:

    This book is lovely, and it would be the perfect introduction to some small projects, to get my quilting habit off the ground!

  15. honeysucklehandmades says:

    The reason why I would love this book is because I want to learn how to make quilts! I have tried a few times with VERY little success. All I have learned is how to stash fabric in a drawer when my ideas don’t work out. This book looks like it has a lot of really cute ideas, and it will teach the basics of quilting, which will help in getting my ideas up off the ground! I would be so grateful to have this book!

  16. says:

    I can’t believe all the templates this has. I’m no quilter but I think this book might have me persuaded.

  17. fpn says:

    I think that the book would serve as a great inspiration for projects. I also think that it would be useful for obtaining experience on quilting on a smaller scale. I have been trying to get into quilting, but the size of the project alone can be overwhelming. It would be a great way to create gifts on a budget by using scraps and still be able to incorporate some nicer more pricey fabrics.

  18. nowayjos3 says:

    When people think the finished product IS the scrap pile, its time to hit the books… now I just need to get one

  19. Gina says:

    I’d love to have a copy of ‘Whip Up Mini Quilts’ as I’m interested in learning this beautiful art, and I like small-scale projects. I will admit though, that I plan to hand sew my quilts as I’m not fond of sewing machines.

  20. happydaydeadfish says:

    i’d love to learn to quilt. and those mini’s look like the perfect way to learn. or perhaps give to my quilting friend. :)

  21. Lindsay says:

    I graduated this spring with my master of arts degree. After focusing on school (and paying for school), I’m ready to indulge myself in some quilting. My grandmother is a quilter and, because of arthritis and a recent shoulder surgery, now is discouraged by how difficult it is for her to sow. Not only would this book give me a jump start into quilting, it could be an encouragement to my grandmother as well.

  22. jalphaiv says:

    I’m trying to make my first quilt and I bet this book would be a wonderful resource!

  23. SoDucky says:

    I’d love to make my daughter a small quilt! She’ll be old enough in a few months to sleep with a blanket and I would like for it to be one that will be meaningful and a keepsake when she is older.
    soluckyducky at {gmail} dot {com}

  24. LisaMarie says:

    I’ve got bins full of little scraps of fabric. Big bins, not the little shoe box bins. Bins that you could hide a body in with lots of spare room. Multiple big bins. I used to work for a big online fabric shop and couldn’t stand to see the little scraps go to the trash heap. Now I need to find a good way to use them. This looks like a great little book to help me work through the mountains of fabric that I’ve collected. I need help. Please.

  25. Amy R says:

    I’ve been following Whip UP for awhile now and just love the fresh designs there. I’ve been making mini reproduction quilts and these bright modern designs would be a great outlet for that side of my brain!

  26. Laura Stewart says:

    I have two quilts to make and don’t know how!

  27. katherine says:

    I just finished my first quilt today!! I really can’t wait to make more! and the quilts in this book look so cute!

  28. says:

    I am a newbie quilter and this book is just the thing for me. I can start with mini quilts and then work towards creating bigger and complex quilts.

  29. sandfly45 says:

    I have started to quilt a couple of times but I didn’t really know what I was doing and the projects were too large and ambitious for a first-timer. I love the idea of “mini-quilts”!

  30. dippydisco says:

    One of my favorite childhood memories is of sleeping with a quilt that was given to me that someone in my mothers family had made. Sad to say I loved it to bits and pieces. I would love to one day make my own quilt and a mini quilt would be a great start.

  31. Julie says:

    I am relearning to quilt after 12 years and this would be a great jumping off point from my beg. quilting class! Thanks for offering this giveaway!

  32. mylynedj says:

    I would like to be able to be able to join the ranks of those engaged in this time-honored hobby and use the mini-quilt that I make from the book as an art piece, just as it’s non-compact counterparts are used in many homes.

  33. cova says:

    I’ve een this book at whip up and it really looks good. It would be perfect for me as I’ve never sewn a quilt.

  34. cova says:

    I’d love to have this book to start my first quilt

  35. Caitlin T. says:

    mini quilts are my current obsession! they’re so quick and easy–and i prefer mini quilt sandwiches to bigger ones. this looks like a great book! i especially love the leaf quilt in the middle. thanks!

  36. says:

    I was an avid quilter years ago, but it’s fallen by the wayside since my kids were born. I’d love to try some shorter, faster projects like the ones in this book to get myself back into it.

  37. Laura says:

    Quilting was my favorite thing to do before having my twins 5 years ago. I couldn’t justify keeping my rotary cutter, pins, scissors, etc. lying around with babies…toddlers around. So, I packed it all in. Just in the last few months, I’ve begun thinking, “the kids are old enough now that I could get back into this!” Well, I think this contest is timely for a much deserving Mom who…needs her quilting back! Thanks so much for this great offer. Even if I don’t win this really cool book, I think I’ll dive back in anyway. My bins of fabric have been calling my name…

  38. theverybusyspider says:

    I’m a new quilter. This would be the perfect way to gain some confidence!

  39. aldin124 says:

    I’ve been wanting to try my hand at quilting but keep thinking it’s too hard! I’m hoping this book would make it easier and fun!

  40. qriouscrafter says:

    Love homemade quilts but the process of putting a full-size one together always seemed daunting. This book’s adorable designs and smaller-size projects may just inspire me to finally give quilting a try. Thanks for offering the giveaway!

  41. mwrm says:

    Quilting is next on my list of obsessions, so this book would be a great place to start. It look ace.

  42. baukje says:

    I am a beginner only. So far I made 2 miniquilts with only squares. I think this book should be great for me, so many miniprojects…..

  43. mirja says:

    I am just learning how to quilt and this book looks like a great way to get started!

  44. kerrydd says:

    I love sewing and quilting, and I’m always looking for new ideas! Thanks for offering the book!

  45. jackie says:

    Am new to quilting i think mini quilts are inteesting in that they take a short time to complete and no chance of getting bored. i would love to learn how to do mini quilts

  46. Jen S says:

    I’ve made one quilt in my lifetime and would love to start making more! What a great giveaway!! Thanks…

  47. KOKO says:

    I have a new screened in/ all yr. porch with painted wood walls that are bare. I’d love to win this beautiful book to help decorate my new space. Gorgeous!

  48. silkensoytofu says:

    I think that this book would be perfect for me. I haven’t made any quilts yet but have always loved feeling the lines of a hand-me-down. This would be a good way to learn more about quilting by having a manageable size to work with.

  49. ponderonit1 says:

    I am just now beginning to learn to quilt. I love the idea of mini quilts because they complete an idea and are a much more attainable goal than making a bed sized traditional quilt!

  50. Andrea says:

    holy inspiration! this book would be wonderful to help me use up my hoard of scraps! i have never done a mini quilt, but the projects in this book look amazing…i need to do the beautiful flower garden one for my little girl’s room.

  51. Bonney says:

    I would love to have this book! It’s too hot for a full sized quilt right now and a mini quilt is the perfect piece to take to the beach or sit on the porch. It’s a great time for inspiration while it’s so hot and you still want to be busy!

  52. Shana says:

    I have a ton of scraps I need to use up, and these would make great Christmas presents!

  53. Nadia says:

    Thanks for another great giveaway opportunity! I would love to get into quilting but, I find full sized projects daunting, these mini projects seem like just the thing to start out with.-Thanks again!

  54. CraftyCanuck says:

    I love the idea of making a mini quilt, with my short attention span I could see myself actually finishing one. Plus I love browsing a great craft book for inspiration and your book looks like it has a lot of great ideas.

  55. biene says:

    I would love to win this book! It looks awesome! Today is my 30th birthday and this would be a great unexpected present :-D Also three of my friends are pregnant and making small quilts for the babies would be wonderful.
    Best, Aline

  56. bananafluff says:

    Quilts always look kinda daunting compared to the smaller projects I do. I will love giving mini quilts a go, and it may actually make a quilter out of me!

  57. JK says:

    I would love to have some new ideas for using up my scraps and these small quilts would be perfect!

  58. Jessica says:

    I grew up watching my grandmother quilt. I would sit with her on the screened in porch while she patiently answered all my little-girl questions. When my family and I moved away, my grandmother kept up our time together over the phone as best she could. Not much has changed today. I still call her several times a week and we exchange recipes, embroidery and quilting ideas. She still answers all of my questions and gives me advice on whatever project I’m working on at the moment. One of my most treasured possessions is a quilt she made for me right before we moved away. It stays on my bed so I can see it and think of her on a daily basis. I’ve always wanted to send her something with which she can do the same thing. This mini-quilt book might just be the inspiration I need to begin this project.

  59. mysteryflavor says:

    I am dying to learn how to quilt! I recently commandeered my mom’s old sewing machine, which was wallowing in the basement, and I’ve already bought fabric and tried working out patterns, but I need some expert guidance to get started the right way.

  60. agmead says:

    This book has been on my wish list since I first saw it a couple of weeks ago. I love the idea and the projects I’ve seen and would love this book!

  61. EmpressAsma says:

    i have all the tools, i just need the know-how. I’m a big fan of WhipUp and would love to have this book.

  62. Stacey S. says:

    need to hone my skills at quilting and these mini quilts fit the bill. thanks for the give-away.

  63. jess owley says:

    yes yes yes… i have always wanted to learn how to quilt. just got a seweing machine recently and love the idea of an instructional guide with smaller products. so much less daunting than starting with a king size bedspread

  64. Stacey S. says:

    need to hone my skills at quilting and these mini quilts fit the bill. thanks for the give-away.

  65. KayDee says:

    Perfect! Never thought I had the patience for a quilt but this little ones would be a great!

  66. kluckingbear says:

    I love to quilt, but I just don’t have the time or patience to finish a big quilt. I just love the doing mini quilts that aren’t just miniatures of larger blocks! I’m keeping my fingers crossed!

  67. Muddymay says:

    i <3 quilts.

  68. oraxia says:

    Quilting has always been one of those things that I found intimidating because it always seems like everything has to be JUST RIGHT for it to lay flat and look good. However, I’ve been saving all my fabric scraps under the impression that someday I’ll learn to do a little quilting and use them!
    Mini quilts sound less intimidating, so maybe this book would help :)

  69. Mackenzie says:

    I’d love to start quilting!

  70. Janet Berkman says:

    I’ve got a large stash that I’d love to start working through! Mini-quilts make great gifts.

  71. blondiescakes says:

    I have recently hit the fabric jack pot at an estate sale and I’ve decided to pick up quilting to justify the giant box I dragged home. This would be the perfect place to start.

  72. carolena says:

    I’m intimidated by all the wonderful quilts I see…I think this book would give me the hand holding I need,

  73. Margaret says:

    Both of my grandmothers, my mother and her sisters have quilted but it was something that never made it past their generation. This book looks like the perfect place to start. I can learn the basic techniques of quilting and then incorperate my families styles and maybe explore with a full size quilts. I would love a copy of this book and will promise to put it to great use.

  74. Lisa773 says:

    My Mom passed away 4 years ago. She was a very talented, juried crafter and artist. I was never able to paint, but I discovered I wasn’t half bad at quilting, which has now become my passion. Perhaps her talents were passed on…just in the form of quilting. I have recently discovered the thrill of and addiction to mini quilts. Thanks for listening.

  75. Beckysews says:

    I have this book on my “wishlist!”
    I have sewn for 40+ years but am still not quilting except for little bitty make it up as I go projects. Would love to win and learn how to do it right!
    Thanks for the chance to win.

  76. se7en says:

    This just looks like such an inspiration… and let’s face it anything from Whip Up is totally fabulous!!!

  77. Stephanie C. says:

    I think this book would be a great way for me to ease into quilting!

  78. says:

    so many scraps little time…..I might actually be able to finish one of these!

  79. Emory says:

    I really want to try quilting but a full-size project is intimidating. I’d love to have this book so I can start small, with really cute projects!

  80. Barbara says:

    I would like to have this book for inspiration and to begin in the world of quilting, to which I’m new!
    Thanks for the giveaway :)

  81. Jenny says:

    I have read several reviews of this book and would love to win it – I’m brand new to quilting and thought mini-quilts would be a good place to start :)

  82. magwilky says:

    I love sewing books. They are so inspiring and I would love to decorate my walls with a mini quilt or two.

  83. Casey says:

    I would love to make some small quilts for my children. This book looks like ot has lovely patterns!

  84. stblaize says:

    I would love to have this to donate to the sewing co-op where I volunteer.

  85. bricker says:

    I just need another push. I’ve cut stuff out, and made some very tiny quilts. I’d love this book, if only to push me out of the nest.

  86. Bellgirl says:

    I’m new to quilting, and so far I’ve just made stripes and squares. I’d love to win a copy of Kathreen’s book so that I can learn a range of quilting techniques and I work my way through the patterns by these talented quilters and artists.

  87. Izzy says:

    I’m new to quilting, this book looks great!! thanks for the opportunity to win it :)

  88. Linda G says:

    I would love a copy of this book. I have wanted to learn to quilt for a long time. I finally have the opportunity to take lessons soon and I am very excited about learning to make these beautiful, functional works of art.

  89. artteach7 says:

    As I work on my focus for my MFA, I have been obsessing over new crafts to try, and this one seems so easy to get started. I have always been a tad overwhelmed by the thought of making a whole quilt, but these seem so lovely.

  90. PenguinBot says:

    I’d love to win this! I’ve never made an actual quilt before and think that starting off small would be good inspiration.

  91. trudys_person says:

    This book looks like great inspiration! I recently took a course in journal quilts, and small quilts are a great way to explore ideas and techniques. Thank you for the giveaway!

  92. Sandy N.... says:

    This book looks wonderful! I just love the bright colors and would love to make a mini quilt from it. Thanks for the opportunity to win it!

  93. Ted H. says:

    The small quilts sound like good, short projects. It’s nice to start something you can finish…

  94. Courtney says:

    I would love this book because I am learning to quilt and would love to learn the best techniques on smaller projects. I am a subscriber to Whip Up and love the creative and easy to follow projects posted. I already have someone special in mind for the leaf block quilt!

  95. Merryn says:

    I would love to win this book as I am intrigued as to how to make the Shibori Quilt pictured inside. Thank you.

  96. Rashley says:

    With just three more weeks till i pop out my first midget bambino, surely i will have time to whip up a mini quilt!!! N x

  97. caitlinmae says:

    I was taught to sew when I was young by my mom who was always into art quilting. I hadn’t done any sewing for about 10 years and have recently got back in to making things. It’s so much fun! My boyfriend and I moved into a town home and I’ve been jonesing for cute things to decorate with and snazz up the walls of our home, and this book would give me some great ideas and give me something really fun to work on.
    Thanks so much for the opportunity!

  98. says:

    I have loved miniature things my whole life. I had a dollhouse as a child. Since I have been quilting I have fallen in love with mini quilts and would love to have this book to make some new mini creations.

  99. RedHeadAlrt says:

    My grandparents just spent over $150 to send me (in Australia) a vintage Elna sewing machine from the 1960s. They have always supported my craft in every way. She’s a great quilter from TN and my goal is to use this beautiful old machine to start a great family tradition (and to make sure they didn’t spend that money in vein)

  100. galexandrias says:

    So excited about this book, would LOVE to win it!!

  101. emily ann says:

    A few years ago I saw a mini quilt my aunt had made and was fascinated by, well, just how tiny it was. I would absolutly love to learn to make a mini quilt from the adorable projects in this book.

  102. says:

    I’m working on my first, very basic, quilt. I’d love some exposure to different techniques and would especially love to make the leaves quilt featured on the cover!

  103. Toni says:

    Since I have to craft and quilt in fits and starts between keeping an eye on my 4 year old and 2 year old’s hijinks, mini-quilts are perfect for me! I love the contemporary style and beauty of the projects in this book, right up my alley.

  104. stlphotogal says:

    Anything quilts causes me to revert back to 13 year old fangirl mode! I LOVE quilting (especially quilting books) and am ALWAYS looking for ways to use up those scraps from my larger projects. This book looks like the perfect way for me to fill my need for MORE quilting books and use up my scraps to make way for more fabric! It’s a WIN-WIN situation :)

  105. IrishMcc says:

    I would love this book, am just learning & would love the inspiration.

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