Whether you are just starting to sew or you are a pro, don't under estimate the value in quilting. Quilting is a good way to get to know your sewing machine*, become comfortable sewing without pins and become a faster sewing machine operator.
I took a quilting class many years ago and we used the Make a Quilt in a Day : Log Cabin Pattern book. This is how I quilt. First I cut 2 1/2" strips with my Rotary Cutter and Cutting Mat. Then I do minor planning and just happily sew away!
An added bonus is choosing beautiful Designer Quilting Fabricsand other Quilting Fabric at Joann.com And you don't have to have much of each to make a small lap quilt 45" X 60"! Just make sure one style has enough to do the back. I'm always surprised at how wonderful they turn out, even if I'm not sure of my fabric choices.
I've been making some quilt tops for the Prayer Blanket Ministry. Its my way of giving back. One a month is the current goal. Another person is happy to finish them so it works out for both of us!