book review: little bits quilting bee by kathreen ricketson

November 9th, 2011

little bits quilting bee

Kathreen Ricketson has come out with a phenomenal new quilting book called Little Bits Quilting Bee. All the quilts in the book are made out of charm squares, jelly rolls, layer cakes, and fat quarters. If you think I’m talking about delicious pastries you are not that far off. Although those are all names for packs of fabrics, sewers ooo and ahh over them like kids in a candy store. I know I have drooled over a jelly roll, but had no reason to buy such a delicacy.

The book is beautiful, the designs are young and graphic, and the directions are thorough. That is practically a given when you pair Kathreen + Chronicle books. But lets get to the fun bit: choosing fabrics. I picked a favorite quilt from each of the four categories in the book and then stood staring in front of the giant wall of fabric that is the internet.


LAYER CAKE: pre-cut 10 in./25 cm squares that usually come in packs of 40

sunny day mat

I think the sunny day mat is the perfect project to make for your best friend who is finally having a baby. I would love to do it mostly in navy and white (because she will of course know babies love looking at high contrast colors), then play around with some beautiful blue and white hand printed fabrics for the inner circle and all those prairie points!

  1. brushstrokes in teal
  2. blue jars fabric
  3. huts handprinted fabric
  4. organic cotton block printed fabric
  5. weave hand screenprinted fabric


CHARM SQUARES: packs of pre-cut 5 in/12 cm squares

cloud song

Cloud song is everyone’s favorite quilt from the book. Maybe because it’s gray and cold outside right now, but I think this quilt would be amazing with a blue/gray color scheme. Wouldn’t some liberty of london prints make a lovely sky? Look it there, they sell a charm square pack that is just perfect.

rainy day quilt colors

  1. blues for you fat quarter stack
  2. liberty of london muted palette charm squares
  3. kona shades of gray and charcoal scraps


FAT QUARTERS:  a quarter of a yard measuring about 18 x 22 in/46 x 56 cm

garnets and gold

I love the Garnets and Gold quilt in the book mostly because I reminds me of my first quilt, but also because it’s so stinking cheery. Done in vintage floral sheets, you couldn’t help but be happy making it–and sleeping under it!

vintage sheets fat quarters


 JELLY ROLL: pre-cut 2 1/2 in/6cm strips of fabric cut selvage to selvage

step lively

I would love to tone down the rainbowness of this bold quilt with some muted, hand dyed fabric. Actually, while I was looking around the internet for fabrics I found it very difficult to find handmade fabrics made up into packs like this–jelly rolls were by far the hardest to find. If there are any screen printers or other fabric makers out there–here is your niche! Quilters are crazy for fabric. Cra. Zy. And I’m betting they would love make a quilt from your hand printed goodness.

hand dyed jelly rolls

  1. cool fall leaves hand dyed jelly roll
  2. hand dyed cotton jelly roll, AUTUMN

As a little treat I have one book to giveaway! So leave something lovely in the comments and I’ll pick a winner tomorrow evening. Good luck! And follow along on the book tour to see more lovely quilts from Little Bits Quilting Bee.



Wednesday, November 9 – luvinthemommyhood & Elsie Marley
Thursday, November 10 – True Up
Friday, November 11 – House on Hill Road & CraftyPod

Monday, November 14 – Handmade by Alissa & Hello My Name Is Heather
Tuesday, November 15 – West Coast Crafty & Foxy Art Studio
Wednesday, November 16 – Patch Andi & The Last Piece
Thursday, November 17 – In Color Order & Duo Fiberworks
Friday, November 18 – Kristin La Flamme & Camp Follower Bags & Quilts

Monday, November 21 – Quilt Dad
Tuesday, November 22 – Pat Sloan & Pleasant Home



Posted in library.

102 Responses to book review: little bits quilting bee by kathreen ricketson

  1. Ooh – pick me! I LOVE the concept of the book, having gorged on a charm pack myself, only to have found no real use for it. Yet.

  2. Kelly says:

    Great book and giveaway

  3. Melissa says:

    I love the sunny day mat. I’m imagining it as a play mat in the living room. Or if I was really ambitious making some for library story time. :)

  4. Tammia says:

    I have a lot to learn about quilting…looks like that book would be perfect!

  5. Michelle P says:

    This looks like such a lovely inspiring book! It might inspire me to actually make a quilt rather than dreaming about it!

  6. anne says:

    I want to get into quilting so badly and this book would be such an inspiration!!! I really hope I win it and will put it on my Christmas list regardless : )

  7. kelli says:

    So lovely! I want to make that rainbow quilt.

  8. Kristianna says:

    What a delightful book, full of beautiful things! Such yummy fabrics too!

  9. mo says:

    This book looks lovely. I would love to win it! Thank you for the sneak peek.

  10. JustPam says:

    Would love to win this book. Thanks for the chance.

  11. Chiska says:

    I want to climb under that jelly roll quilt! I love the raindrop one too. I’ve been collecting fabric for a rain quilt since I moved away from rain country to the hot/cold DRY desert.

  12. Carla G says:

    This book looks fabulous! And it would help inspire me as a new quilter! I’m just piecing my first quilt together and need some new ideas that aren’t big or hard projects! thanks for a chance to win! :)

  13. fenna says:

    I’d love to win the book!! Thanks for the chance :)

  14. Tera says:

    My mom has made us some lovely quilts which I treasure. I have never made a full quilt but I want to learn. This book would be lovely inspiration. : )

  15. Amanda says:

    so many cool quilts!

  16. kathreen says:

    I love all the fabrics you chose for the quilts – great options. thank you for the lovely review.


  17. Molly says:

    Wow! The Cloud Song and Garnets and Gold quilts are insanely beautiful!

  18. Debra says:

    I could sure use a pick me up- looks like a great book.

  19. Annapk says:

    This book looks great! Perfect for a wanna-be quilter to wet their feet. ;)

  20. Wendy H says:

    What inspiration!

  21. Lisa K says:

    I would LOVE to have this book! Thanks for the giveaway :)

  22. Allison C says:

    I’m a new quilter so I haven’t used pre-cuts before, but I really like that rainbow quilt that uses jelly rolls!

  23. Lucy says:

    i was given a big stash of quilt fq batik pieces for my birthday last year…..
    i smell some lovely projects to use it for ;o)
    thanks for a chance to win

  24. MBMeadows says:

    Pretty book! Love the colors and projects!

  25. Alisa says:

    I LOVE the Sunny Day Mat! This looks like a great book.