Fair Entry – Mini Country Quilt

This quilt was made using a specialty ruler called the QCR Mini (Quick Curve Ruler) and the pattern “Mini Country”.  Because I wanted a smaller quilt than the pattern, I made one pattern repeat, then added a plain border and a pieced border from the scraps.  The finished size is 17″ square.  It won champion in the quilting category.  The neutral colors were fun to work with!


Big Baby Bento Box Quilt revisted

One of my former coworkers recently had their second baby boy, and so of course I had to make another Big Baby Bento Box Quilt.  I used the same airplane and orange dot fabric as in their first boy’s quilt.  The other fabrics I picked up from my favorite store, Rossville Quilts.  This project was one of several that I worked on during Rossville Quilts “Girls Night Out” retreat at their Mill House Retreat Center earlier this Spring.  The special guest at the retreat was fabric and pattern designer Terri Degenkolb.  And completely by accident, the green fabric that I had bought for this quilt only days before the retreat was from one of her fabric lines and I didn’t figure it out until after I left the store!  So that was a fun surprise!


Here is a picture of the back, which is pieced like the original:


This time, since I had a yard of the yellow, I didn’t have a lot of piecing to do, so it went fairly quickly.  Then I just did a large stipple and machine zig-zagged the binding on.  The recipients loved it, and the older brother tried to claim it as his own until his mom brought out the one I had made for him when he was born!

If you would like to make your own, the link to the tutorial is here.

Big Baby Bento Box Quilt Free Tutorial

When I found out that my sister-in-law was going to have a baby last summer, I naturally had to make a baby quilt for her.  Since it was their third child, they didn’t want to know if it was a girl or a boy, so I was rather torn as to what to do for fabric because I typically pick out something with an appropriate theme.  I don’t go to Walmart all that often, but when I do, I usually check out the crafts section, and I found the perfect fat quarters for only $1 each.  Then the problem came when I tried to decide what to do with these fat quarters, so of course I turned to Pinterest for help and found this design by a user named pcbatiks called Giant Bento Box Baby Quilt.  There was no pattern, just a finished size of 36″ by 40″.  I knew I had to figure out how to make this quilt, and I decided to share the pattern with you so you can make it too!  Here is the finished quilt:


To make this quilt, you will need:

  • 2 fat quarters each of four different patterns (8 total), or four 1/2 yards
  • 1 1/4 yard fabric for backing, or if you are adventurous (or frugal), you can piece it from the leftover scraps and two or three more fat quarters
  • 1 fat quarter for the binding
  • Crib size batting (I used the fusible kind since I don’t like to baste!)


If you are starting with 1/2 yard cuts, cut them in half on the fold to get two fat quarter sized pieces approximately 18″ x 22″.  To keep directional designs upright, each fat quarter pair will need to be cut on the long edge and the short edge, see the diagram below.


  1. Lay the first fat quarter so that the 22″ edge is horizontal and cut one 9 1/2″ and two 5″ strips.  Subcut the 9 1/2″ and 5″ strip to 10 1/2″ long, and the remaining 5″ strip to 15 1/2″ long. Lay the second fat quarter so that the 18″ edge is horizontal and cut two 5 1/2″ strips.  Subcut one strip to 18 1/2″ and the other to 14″.  Repeat with the remaining sets of fat quarters.
  2. Take your strips and arrange them as show below, making sure to keep the designs all facing vertically.


IMPORTANT:  For these next steps, be sure to keep the strips in the same orientation as you laid them out, otherwise you will end up with blocks that don’t fit together!  I worked on one block at a time and put the sewn unit back in place to make sure I sewed the next strip on correctly.


1.  Sew a 10 1/2″ x 5″ strip to a 10 1/2″ x 9 1/2″ rectangle.


2.  Next, sew the 14″ x 5.5″ strip to the unit.


3.  Now add the 15 1/2″ x 5″ strip to the side.


4. And finally, add the 18 1/2″ x 5 1/2″ strip.


5.  Repeat this process to create three more blocks, and be sure to keep the strips of each block in the correct orientation; each block is different!  Lay out your blocks again and join them into rows and then stitch the rows together.



6.  Layer the top with your batting and backing and quilt!  I just used a stipple design.


7.  Cut 8 – 2″ x 22″ strips from your binding fat quarter and join the ends.  I sewed the binding on the back of the quilt, wrapped it around to the front, and zigzag stitched it in place, see the picture above.

8. Add a label and you’re done!

In case you’re curious about the back of my quilt, here it is:


While it turned out awesome and used up all the leftover fabric, it took longer to piece than the top did!

Hopefully you enjoyed this tutorial, and I would love to see the quilts you make from it!

New quilt pattern in progress

I have finally finished the first draft of new quilt pattern for this little quilt:


I named the quilt “Little Ladders” because it somewhat resembles the block called Jacob’s Ladder, although it’s really a Jewel Box block, but I thought “Little Ladders” was a lot cuter!  The quilt measures 18″ square, and the fabric line is called “Lakeside Gatherings”.  Even though you could make the quilt from mini charms, I used a regular charm pack cut into 2 1/2″ squares so that I could have an equal number of light and dark squares.  Getting the pieced border to fit was a little tricky, but with a couple of adjustments to the seam allowances, it worked just fine!  I love it when I can create something so cute with a little bit of math.  I hope to get the pattern tested and published soon!


Christmas Candle Mat

I bought this as a kit at this year’s local Quilt Shop Hop.  I wasn’t so much into the fabric (I mostly decorate with blue and white for the holidays), but I did like the pattern and plan to make more in different colors.

Candle Mat Ronda Cassens

Instead of being pieced, most of the fabrics are folded and pressed before being sewn onto the Insulbrite and backing in a quilt-as-you go method.  My walking foot doesn’t have a good quarter inch seam, so I have to mark it on the fabric before I sew, which slows me down a little bit.  And I decided to finish the binding with the machine using a straight stitch because I was feeling lazy, which turned out not so good as I expected, so I had to hand sew a side and a little part of another.  Typically if I am going to finish the binding with the machine, I will attach it to the back of the quilt and zig-zag the front so that I can see what I am doing and can catch the binding without issues, but I didn’t want to zig-zag this one because I thought it wouldn’t look nice.  I knew from past experience not to sew from the front and hope for the best, but I did it anyway.  Oh, well, hopefully I don’t try it again and make more work for myself!

A little helper

Stripes - Ronda Cassens


Stripes decided to help me sew the binding on my latest quilt, Simply Spools by Carol Doak from Easy Paper Pieced Miniatures.  Here is the finished quilt:




Simply Spools by Ronda Cassens (c)


It is 16″ square.  The fabric is called Sunnyside, and I free motion quilted the hearts and in the ditch around the spools.  It will find a home in the my craft room.