Monday, December 1, 2008

Gee's Bend Quilt Mural Trail

Some time ago I noted here that there were plans to honor the Gee's Bend Quilters. I will not attempt to retell the tale, but I did read that this past weekend the Gee's Bend Quilt Mural Trail was dedicated. The work of artist Tyree McCloud is displayed on ten 8'x 8' plywood quilt blocks along 17 miles of Alabama's Wilcox County Highway 29.

Gee's Bend - U.S. Postage Stamps from 2006

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Miss Arlene's wish

It has been several weeks since my last post, and there has been much happening in my life that had nothing to do with Barn Quilts. A great deal of my mental energy has been focused elsewhere, so now I will try to play catch-up the next few days. Looking at the date of my last post, and one of my more recent Barn Quilt pictures is a good place to start.

Watauga - Baumgardner's Barn

The image above is the Baumgarner's barn, found in the Mabel Community of Watauga County, NC. My wife and I were riding bikes a few weeks ago along Old Hwy 421 when we came across this sight. I have since found out that these recently hung Quilt Squares were designed by the seniors at the Western Watauga Community Center, and painted by over 30 members of the community and visitors. It is reported that having these quilts painted and hung on the barn was one of Miss Arlene Baumgardner's final wishes.

... and yes, those are Christmas Trees growing behind the barn.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Where to...

Are you sometimes looking for a new experience? How about trying a new place to visit, where the demands on your time are less, and the quiet is like a renewal, and an uplift for your spirit? This is a blog with a focus on the Barn Quilt (or Quilt Barn), so I went on-line looking for the elusive Barn Quilt Inn. I discovered that there are several places that you can stay that either have Barn Quilts on the buildings where your room may be, or on working barns outside your door to welcome you to a new day. Some of these Inn Keepers don't realise that they have something in the Barn Quilt that is so rare and desirable.

I will list several of these Inns and B&Bs here, and there are more... If you know of one, please send me the link so I can share.

The Barn Inn Bed & Breakfast
6838 County Road 203
Millersburg, OH 44654

Hannah Marie Country Inn
4070 Highway 71
Spencer, Iowa 51301

Ponder Cove B&B
1067 Ponder Creek Road
Mars Hill, NC 28754

On the Windfall
2822 Little Windfall Rd.
Lansing, NC 28643

Valkommen House
3219 - 370th , Hwy 175
Stratford, Iowa 50249


Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Sign of the times...

I was on my way to hunt for one Barn Quilt when I had to stop and take a picture of another. And then, there it was... the day after Halloween and almost a month before Thanksgiving, I see that it's harvest time for one of the big cash crops in North-Western North Carolina. Loaded on the back of big flat-bed trucks, they have started arriving at one of the many staging and distribution points in the area...

Christmas Trees!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Honoring veterans

There is a new Barn Quilt Loop in Lewis County, Kentucky. Located between Vanceburg and Concord, on the Quicks Run Road, there will be a series of Quilt Blocks honoring veterans. Using primarily the red, white and blue colors, this trail is expected to be completed by Veterans Day 2008. State Representative Robin Webb will be at the Lewis County High School in Vanceburg on Nov. 11, to dedicate the Patriot Trail. The VFW helped to sponsor this trail which includes five, 8' Barn Quilts representing the five branches of the United States Armed Forces

Monday, October 20, 2008

Elkhorn, Wisconsin


What: Planning meeting

When: 6 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 29, 2008

Where: Walworth County offices, 100 W. Walworth St., Elkhorn, Wi.

For more information: Call Peg Reedy, Walworth County's UW Extension office, (262) 741-4961, or e-mail at:

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Wilkes County Quilters

There is more than one way to quilt a barn... Last weekend I had a few hours to explore the neighboring North Carolina county of Wilkes. I knew that they had begun a Barn Quilt project, but was I unable to find the location of these barns until recently. I managed to find several, and I have posted these on a new Google Map named the Wilkes County Barn Quilt Trail.

The drive, the weather, the barns and Quilt Blocks were all wonderful. I was struck by how lifelike they had managed to make these images. Anyone of us who has painted a Barn Quilt Block knows that there is a lot of work involved. I find the best results for me has been to stick with single colors without trying to add texture. I started taking a closer look at what I was finding, and these images were not painted on the barn, and they were not painted on plywood sheets. While most of these Barn Quilts were the 8 foot x 8 foot size that I expected, they are appearing to be thin sheets of metal or plastic... they are also showing stitches and texture, and it dawned on me that these were not painted at all.

Wilkes Country Quilters

The images are quite striking, and well done. The selections are interesting, but I wanted to know for sure how this was done, so I wrote to the people responsible (the Wilkes County Quilters), and they were kind enough to reply. These are in fact printed on thin sheets of plastic and screwed directly onto the barn. I am still not sure how much money was saved. My experience is that there are many hours of labor involved to paint a barn quilt (not to mention the fun of watching paint dry), and to be sure they saved on the installation labor involved. There is nothing wrong with this way of presenting your work, but it is different than the other Barn Quilt projects that I am familiar with.

Wilkes Country Quilters detail

I do like the idea of working together as a group to plan, paint and install a Barn Quilt. I like the sense that a community working together to create art, is somehow similar to that old fashioned quilting bee, when everything was done by hand, and the bonds between neighbors were strengthened with each stitch. That should not take anything away from this alternative approach. The ladies of the Wilkes County Quilters are celebrating their art of the quilt (their 10th year), and sharing this with the community. Maybe the next Quilt Block in Wilkes County will be plywood sheets that are primed and painstakingly measured, taped and painted. If not, these are still fun to see and enjoy, and will bring many new friends together in a celebration of their work and shared history.

Friday, October 10, 2008


For a limited time I want to share with you a collection of Barn Quilt images from Miami County, Ohio. If the images do not appear after a few seconds (or if you would like to see a larger image), go to the bkwdayton's photostream on Flickr. Technology... Ya gotta love it!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Ashe County Barn Quilt Trail Map

Here is a link to the beginning of my Ashe County Barn Quilt Trail Map on Google. There is a map on the Ashe County Arts Council website. It appears that it was last updated in May of '07, and it does not have some of the features that Google has. I am not displaying the map here because the size of the map when inserted in Blogger presents some problems.

I have not visited all of the Barn Quilts in Ashe County yet. If anyone would like to send me pictures of the missing barns (or blocks), I would be glad to add them.

View Larger Map

Squares and Stars in Ashe

This is called Stars and Squares, at 2821 Hwy. 221, North Jefferson, NC.
Artist: Meghan Minton

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Kentucky Quilt Trails and...

There is a lot to be said about the new Kentucky Quilt Trails web site. This is the official Kentucky Arts Council's portal for all of the current (and future), Barn Quilt projects across the state. These folks have done a good job of pulling all of the projects under a single umbrella while leaving each county to work out the details.

Thanks to this new site, I have added several (Ky) counties to the Barn Quilt Memories sidebar. Don't ask me which ones, but I now count 17 Kentucky sites (some are representing several counties).

Here is a tip for anyone wanting to get an early Christmas present for someone special. There is a new book dedicated to the Barn Quilt Arts Movement in Kentucky. It's called Kentucky Quilt Trails: Views and Voices and details of where to purchase is listed on the website and below:

Kentucky Quilt Trails: Visions and Voices Book Release Receptions

Saturday, October 4, 2008
11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. (E.D.T.)
Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea
975 Walnut Meadow Road Berea, KY 40403
(Silas House will be available to sign books from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.)

Tuesday, October 7, 2008
4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. (E.D.T.)
Kentucky Folk Art Center
102 West First Street Morehead, KY 40351
(Photographer Carol Shutt and Community Scholar Gwenda Lynn Huff will be available to sign books.)

Saturday, October 18, 2008
2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. (C.D.T.)
Museum of the American Quilter's Society
215 Jefferson Street Paducah, KY 42002

Where to Buy

Kentucky Quilt Trails: Views and Voices will be available September 1, 2008. Proceeds from the sale of this book will support community arts projects in Kentucky. The retail price is $9.95 plus Kentucky sales tax and shipping. To order your book from the Kentucky Arts Council, CLICK HERE to fill out the PDF form. (Adobe Reader required to view and fill out form.)

At a Store Near You, Kentucky Quilt Trails: Views and Voices, can also be purchased at the following locations.

Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea
975 Walnut Meadow Road Berea, KY 40403
(859) 985-5449
Hours: 8:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. 7 days a week

Kentucky Folk Art Center Museum Store
102 West First Street Morehead, KY 40351
(606) 783-2204
Hours: 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Monday –Saturday
1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. Sunday

Museum of the American Quilter's Society Museum Store
215 Jefferson Street Paducah, KY 42002
(270) 442-8856
Hours: 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Monday - Saturday

Wholesale Purchases Wholesale inquiries from qualified retail businesses are welcome. For more information, contact Melissa Nesselrode, Kentucky Arts Council at (888) 833-2787 ext. 471 or

Support The publication of Kentucky Quilt Trails: Views and Voices is a project of the Kentucky Arts Council made possible through a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, which believes that a great nation deserves great art.

Sunday, September 28, 2008


I would like to share a short video clip from Nebraska's ABC TV affiliate (NTV), about one of the newest Barn Quilts in that state. By clicking here on the link [NTV video], you should see the story that features Jan Rodehorst talking about her Barn Quilt and the 92 year old barn at Harvest Moon Farms. This bucolic wonderland opens this weekend as a seasonal agri-tourism destination. You can also read the NTV story here [NTV story]

Friday, September 26, 2008

Happy hunting !

It's Friday afternoon... My son's soccer game was called off because there was too much water (rain), and his school dance was called off because there is not enough gas (thanks to Ike). My wife is off to see The Steely Pan Steel Band. If you have a chance, I strongly urge you to check these folks out. Because of the change of plans, my son and I will be snuggling on the sofa tonight with a good book or movie.

Before all of the excitement starts (and I have to fix dinner), I wanted to take a moment to share with you what I was doing last Saturday morning. I was trippin' around Watauga County looking for Barn Quilts. I found eight, and am fairly sure that I know where there are two more. There are a few listed on the Watauga County Arts Council's (Quilt Trails of Western North Carolina), website as "still in process" (and they are not there), so I guess that we need some good neighbors to help to get these blocks finished & hung. Anyway...

I took a few pictures and when I got home, I created a Google Map called Watauga County Barn Quilt Trail. Now Google works good as a search engine, but for some reason you need to be pretty specific in order to find this from their Maps search page. You can click on the link above, or try typing in the exact name that you are searching for. Anyone can create a map. It's free and could save the next guy from driving his tank dry trying to find a specific Quilt Block. I would love to get some feed back, but I will continue to make improvements to this map, and this is just a start. There are more counties, more back roads, more Barn Quilts, and lots more surprises ahead.

Happy hunting!

Monday, September 22, 2008

#100 and still goin' strong

This (below) is a recent post from the Quilt Trails of Western North Carolina website:

UPCOMING EVENT :: Posted 9-13-08

Quilt Trails of Western North Carolina invites the public to witness the installation of the 100th quilt block for Mitchell and Yancey Counties on Saturday, October 11 at noon at 4125 Highway 197S (Pensacola Rd.) in Burnsville.

We will have a potluck on the site and everyone is invited to bring a covered dish. Drinks will be provided. Come help us honor the many volunteers who have brought us to this milestone and watch the 100th block go up. Signs will be posted to help guide you to the site.

For further information call 828-682-7331.

Kudos to the Quilt Trails of Western North Carolina, all of the artists, volunteers, barn owners, contributors, supporters and especially Barbara Webster who has been a driving force in the North Carolina Barn Quilt arts movement. Quite the quilter in her own right, check out Barbara's website Starforest Quilts.

Also, check out the great maps for each county. They do really nice work on these barn quilts, and there is almost always a good story that goes with them. Here is an image of one of the earlier patterns. This is called the Bard of Avon, and the story can be found at #6 on their map.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Racine Post from Racine, Wi

The Racine Post has a series of blog posts that cover the initial creation and installation of the Racine County's Quilts on Barns project. While it is mentioned that both the Racine Arts Council and the Racine County Convention and Visitors Bureau were instrumental in the support of the Quilts on Barns project, neither mention the project on their web-sites. I do applaud Ms Kathi Wilson for having the vision and the follow through to get this off of the ground. The stories and pictures found on the Racine Post blog are wonderful. By October, they hope to have 15 quilt blocks mounted around the county.

I would love to add Racine County to the side bar, but I need some help finding a web site...

Barn Quilt Tour of Champaign County, Ohio

This weekend (September 13-14, 2008), the Champaign County, Ohio, Chamber & Visitor's Bureau is sponsoring their third annual Barn Quilt Tour. You can take the driving tour any time of year, but this weekend you can participate (tickets are $10.00), in an open tour of multiple historic barns. Hours for the tour are 10 am-5 pm on Saturday and Noon-5 pm on Sunday. There are themed activities including a display of over 150 hand-made quilts, and walk in barns. View the 40 barn quilts on this unique driving tour of Champaign County. For more information (map & pictures), go to their web-site at:

I also found a note that says: Bonus quilt show only: Friday the 12th at the Champaign County Fairgrounds.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Corn & Beans

I occasionally find it a problem being able to be in more than one place at a time... I often forget to look at the simple pleasures where I am... Sometimes I find that it is a little too far to travel in order to find what I already have. You can read this as I was in the car too long, but it was a beautiful day, with a beautiful woman, and we were traveling through beautiful county. There was more than one surprise awaiting us...

Last fall when I first discovered the allure of Barn Quilts, I traveled across a few of the neighboring counties to find far more Barn Quilts than I imagined existed. There was one pattern that I missed, and this past weekend I went in search of...

In the far eastern edge of Ashe County, North Carolina, is the Upper Mountain Research Station. This is a partnership of North Carolina State University, and the North Carolina Department of Agriculture... the quilt pattern is Corn & Beans, and credit is given to Les Miller, and the artists of the Westwood Elementary School Faculty. Let's not forget the Ashe County Arts Council .

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Gee's Bend, Alabama

Gee's Bend, Alabama is, in many ways, a living history of the south (at least South Central Alabama). Named for Joseph Gee and his plantation, and with help from the federal government during the great depression, this rural community on the Alabama River has held onto some significant cultural roots, and has grown some new & unique ones. This community is best known for the Quilts of Gee's Bend. In 2006, the United States Post Office issued a series of stamps (below) honoring the history and the quilters of Gee's Bend.

There is another project that will soon be realized and recognized. Artist Tyree McCloud has finished painting a series of 8' x 8' plywood "murals" depicting some of these famous quilt images. I don't think that these quilts will be hung on barns, and rather than quilt blocks, the nature of the Gee's Bend quilts lend themselves to being reproduced in their entirety. I'll keep my eyes open for a picture of the final product.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Expression of Joy

I know nothing of the Barn Quilt shown below, except where it is located... in nearby Wilkes County, North Carolina. Several weeks ago, while traveling through the county with my family, this Barn Quilt was spotted by my wife. Not easy to see from Highway 421, I missed this entirely the first time by, but immediately turned around after being notified. I have not yet seen a mention of this welcome to the county. It is not mentioned on the Cultural Arts Council of Wilkes web-site. It could be an independent expression of joy. I will let you know when I find out more.

After confirming the sighting and taking a quick picture, we all proceeded to a celebration of my birthday. This was a nice way to start the day.

Monday, August 25, 2008

McIntosh Star

My descriptions are not ment to replace images... I do not want to copy images (without permission), that may have copyrights even if fair use rules apply. Therefore, look to follow the embedded links that I try to provide.

Inside the back cover of the September '08, "Our State" magazine [Tar Heel Images] is an image of a man making repairs to, or re-painting a large red barn. This is the McIntosh Barn on the western edge of Burnsville, NC. There is displayed an 8' x 8' quilt block appropriately named the "McIntosh Star". My wife showed me the picture with the caption of "you can paint till the cows come home..." and asked why there was not a mention of the very prominate Barn Quilt ?

The family story, and another picture of the McIntosh Star, is provided on the Quilt Trails of Western North Carolina website. Visit the map for Mitchell & Yancey Counties, and look for the McIntosh Star listed as #13.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Barn Quilt / Quilt Barn News

Compiled by Melissa Kellen for the Le Mars Arts Council, there are some first rate directions for anyone interested in giving Barn Quilting a try. These directions are posted on one of the many Iowa State University Extension web sites (this one is for Plymouth County), and it's called Making Your Barn Quilt. They also have a map, and some general information on Barn Quilts and what they are calling Welcome Quilts. Contact is: Le Mars Arts Council, The Arts Center, 200 Central Ave SE, Le Mars, IA 51031-2032 Ph: 712.546.7476 Fax: 712.546.6477 Kathy Moore, Executive Director.

Also take a look at the Barns of Iowa

From the Richmond Register in Richmond Kentucky, it is reported that the Madison County Extension Homemakers have placed a 16' x 16' quilt block on the barn at Pleasant View Farm in Battlefield Park. The pattern is a “Fools Puzzle” pattern, sometimes called “The Drunkard’s Path,” said designer Don Hart. They plan to place 12 Barn Quilts around the county specifically linked to the Underground Railroad, in addition to the 40+ Barn Quilts that the Homemakers have already done.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

better late than never...

Copied from

ArtBeet, Inc. is the first and only non-profit arts organization with tax-exempt status (a 501(c)(3)) in Kewaunee County, Wisconsin.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Barn Quilt Project - looking for artist volunteers

Agricultural Heritage & Resources (AHR) has partnered with Kewaunee, Door, Manitowoc, and Brown counties, 4-H, UW Extension, Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts for a four county wide "Barn Quilt Project". This project will provide a unique educational experience for children in grades 3 through 12. They will be researching old barns, planning a quilt square that has local agricultural, rural, or ethnic significance.

A barn quilt is one block of an old quilt that is p0ainted on an 8 foot by 8 foot board. This board will be displayed on old barns across the four county area. Along with the barn quilt project, the clubs will work together to create a driving tour and map of the barn quilts within the four county area.

The timeline for this project will be four months. On 4 November 2008, at 6:30 pm, there will be an informational meeting for all youth and adults involved with the Barn Quilt Project. This will include all volunteer artists.

15 November 2008, Dr. William Laatsch, Interim Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs (, will give a presentation to the volunteers about the ethnicity of barns in the four county area, why the barns were constructed in a specific manor, and why they are important to the area. Mrs. Mary Gaye Rank, the textile teacher from Kewaunee High School, will speak to the volunteers about quilting, the history of quilting in Northeastern Wisconsin, and why various patterns were named. There will also be a discussion about the Barn Quilt Project and what to look for when choosing a quilt pattern. Youth groups will be given a list of farmers that are willing to have a barn quilt placed on their barn. The groups will pick one farm from the list. The groups will have seven days to interview the farm family, learn about their heritage, and their desire for any certain quilt pattern.

22 November 2008, the groups will meet at Agricultural Heritage & Resources to discuss their findings from the interviews. They will be introduced to quilt patterns that meet the criteria for this project. The groups will pick a pattern they want to reproduce on the 8 by 8 foot square boards. Mrs. Mary Gaye Rank will discuss color pallet with the groups and help them choose colors that are historically correct, while keeping in mind that the quilts will be hung on barns and need to be seen from a great distance.

6 December 2008 through 28 February 2009, work schedules will be set up for Wednesdays and Saturdays. Five area artists will be on hand to teach the groups about transferring a pattern from a scale drawing to a large piece of wood. Groups will prime the wood with at least two coats of Diamond Vogel paint. The groups will tape the design on the wood and proceed to paint the quilt square.

Beginning March 2009, the barn quilts will be stored at Agricultural Heritage & Resources until the Kewaunee County Fair (July 23-26, 2009) where they will be displayed. After the fair the barn quilts will be hung on the barns that were selected.

Any groups that are not interested in painting a barn quilt, but still want to be a part of this project will have an opportunity to put together a driving tour brochure. This will be with the help of a graphic designer (********). The work for the brochure will start when painting of the barn quilts begins. The design project will end when the barn quilts are installed on the barns. There will also be an opportunity for the groups to work with a web designer. The youth will help to put together a web link from Agricultural Heritage & Resources web page specifically for the barn quilt project. This link will also have a guest book and a comment area attached to the web page so feedback can be measured.

The Farms that agree to have the quilts put on their barns will have them for a period of one year. After that year the farmer can opt to have the quilt removed and placed on a different barn, or keep the quilt up for one more year. The farmer will agree to inform Agricultural Heritage & Resources of any maintenance required to the barn quilt. Agricultural Heritage & Resources will work with the farmer to perform the required maintenance to the barn quilt. Also, area businesses will be sponsoring specific barn quilts, thus, the businesses will help support the project past the funding date requested.

This is a new project for Agricultural Heritage & Resources and the surrounding area. It is foreseeable that this project will take on a life of its own and grow as barn quilts are put up for display. Hence, part of the planning of this project is to see of there is ongoing interest in the four county areas for continued painting of barn quilts. The barn quilt project will be ongoing at least until October 2009, when the National Quilt Show will be held at Agricultural Heritage & Resources.

If you are interested in offering your barn for display, volunteering as an artist or graphic artist, please contact Jennifer at:
Home 388-3451
Cell 255-1132

Please let me know either by phone call or e-mail if you can be part of the barn quilt project. I need at least 5 artists that would be willing to guide the 4-H members in painting the quilt square on on an 8 foot square board. I also need a graphic designer to help design and guide the youth in making a driving brochure.

Thank You,
Jennifer Gozdzialski
volunteer Director of Grants and Acquisitions
Agricultural Heritage and Resources

Monday, August 11, 2008

You may need to leave now if you want to make the meeting...

In the sidebar there is listed an Alcona County, Michigan (Mi). I have updated their web-link and would like to commend President: Cindi Van Hurk, and Vice President: Bill Thompson, and Secretary: Bonnie WichtnerZoia, and Treasurer: Denise Hartz for stitching together the Alcona County Quilt Trail. It appears as if they now have completed five quilt blocks, and posted some nice pictures on their web-site. There is a Barn Quilt Committee meeting at 6:45 (one hour from now), at the Holly Hock Quilt Shop in Harrisville... and the public is invited.

(trivia: over 60% of Alcona County is water)

Sunday, August 10, 2008

I'm back

I have been away from the computer for more than a week, and I returned to find a little news from my Barn Quilt searches done in abstention. There is now a new site added to the Barn Quilt Memories sidebar from Caledonia (Houston County), Minnesota. They are the self-proclaimed "Wild Turkey Capital" of Minnesota. I assume that this mention of Wild Turkey is referring to the bird and not the libation. There is an easy to down-load brochure of the Barn Quilt project, but I was not able to locate the map.

I have found a notice of a Barn Quilt meeting to be held the Blount County Public Library in Maryville, Tennessee at 7:00 on August 12th. (sorry for the short notice) The Appalachian Quilt Trail is a partnership of Clinch-Powell Resource Conservation and Development Council.

There is a story in the Courier-Journal from Louisville, Kentucky about the eight-member "Buffalo Gals" homemakers' group in Stamping Ground, Kentucky, in Scott County. They now claim to have created 147 Quilt Squares for Scott County and beyond, and also have a wonderful web-site. On Sept. 4, the Buffalo Gals will host two free workshops at the UK extension office in Georgetown to teach anyone who is interested the art of painting barn quilts. For more information, e-mail Minch at or call (502) 863-0984.

There is another news story about the Powder Springs Quilt Trail in the Atlanta Journal-Contitution. This is also known as the Southern Quilt Trail in Cobb County, Ga.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

from Morgan County, Colorado

Thanks to an attentive member of the Morgan County Arts Council, and the Morgan County Barn Quilt Group, I can add them to the list of Barn Quilt web-sites on the side bar. There are also some nice pictures from Morgan County at Eagle's Eye Photography. Thanks Ann, for the attentive (Eagle's) eye, and all of the wonderful Barn Quilts. Her comment (and links to more pictures) are on the July 24th, from Fort Morgan, Colorado post (below).

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

I'll be thinkin' about you...

Much is happening in my personal world, but I have also found myself with a few quiet moments to sit at the computer. Soon I will be leaving the cyber-world for a simpler world of sand, surf, shells and sea breezes. It will only be for a few days… alas, there are not barn quilts on the barrier islands of the Carolina’s (yet!). I will have to do some serious catching up here (and the day job), when I return. In the meantime, I want to leave everyone here with at least something positive to contemplate.

The Ning, social networking site (Barn Quilting), is up and running, with a few mildly interesting (forum), subjects to help start conversation. I was exploring the Ning world, and I discovered almost 40 sites that had some interest in quilting. [There is a search bar in the top right of the home page.] Many of these I will need to join (apply to join), before I am allowed to read the posts, or leave any comment. I hate being a spammer. I hope to visit most of these sites tonight, and I will consider this as leaving my calling card. Maybe I will get some interesting comments in return.

One of these Ning sites has been started by Donna Sue Groves, and it is called: National Quilt Barn Trail. If you are familiar with the history of the Barn Quilt Movement, then you already know who she is. I applaud what Ms Groves is doing, and I am certain that it is only a matter of time before there is a National Quilt Barn Trail. Hard work, organization and determination will help, yet I honestly believe that this is an inevitable step for such a great community of communities.

The other tid-bit I would like to throw out is the images that already exist on Flickr, and other image sharing sites across the web. It’s easy to search for these by typing in the words associated with Barn Quilts. I don’t have time this week to introduce myself to all of these wonderful and talented photographers, but it would be great to have someone drop a few pictures on the Barn Quilting page.

Share the stories…

Thursday, July 24, 2008

from Greenville, Tennessee

The Greenville Sun reports tonight that "The Appalachian Resource Conservation and Development Council has received a $10,000 grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission" which will provide "funding to develop a map and signage program for the "Follow the Quilt Trail" which is expected to attract more visitors to the area." I do believe that this is our federal tax dollars that will be spent. That is nice!

Visit ARD&DC

from Fort Morgan, Colorado

Today, from Fort Morgan, Colorado and the Fort Morgan Times is the story "Local businesses join barn quilt project". There are several pictures of local businesses that have (what appears to me to be) 2' x 2' quilt blocks on the outside walls or store front windows. It says that these are painted and installed free of charge. There is also a list of addresses for the 18 more barn quilts that have been put up in the past 18 months. I was only able to find one other reference to the project. The Morgan County Rural Electric Association ran a story last October titled: "Charming Barn Quilts Add Color Across Morgan County". I have not been able to find an active presence on the web.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

The Quilter's Catalog

I love the early morning, and late afternoon sun, when the shadows are long and I have a since of actually living on a spinning orb in a vast universe. I am a morning person, so the summer sunrises for me are special. By (a little past), 6:00 in the morning, I am almost always awake. At this time of day (especially on the weekend), I am the only human that dares to stir in my neighborhood, not to mention my home. There is a symphony of songbirds (that is noticeably absent in the winter), and often a genital breeze to cool my coffee.

The morning is often a good time to sit at the computer and not be interrupted. It is also a good time for me to read, or muse on the events of the day. I am more often drawn to non-fiction books and one of the books I have enjoyed this summer is about quilting. I am not a quilter, and consider myself a newbe to the world of quilting, but know a good book when I see what’s inside.

I found this wonderful book about quilting a few months ago. After being invited to attend my nephew’s graduation from High School (I was honored to attend), I knew what sort of ceremony I was in for. I was eager to find some quiet, solitary entertainment for the time it took to read off many hundreds of names, countless introductions, awards, and speeches. Between the time that we dropped him off to get frocked and the time for us to find seats in the coliseum, my brother's family (kids in tow), and I descended upon the local Barnes & Noble. There is was… The Quilter's Catalog, a comprehensive resource guild, by Meg Cox, Workman Publishing, 2008. Current and Comprehensive!

I have rarely found a more complete compilation of history, information and current resources on any topic, than what Ms Cox offers here on quilting. There are a lot of how-to books on quilting. There are some books that list various patterns, and even some books on the history of quilting, but I would venture to say that if you quilt, then you may want to have a copy of this in the sewing room (or by the bed). It has been a joy for me, and quite educational. From hand & machine quilting, quilt shows & teachers, from beginner to expert, I think that there is something here for anyone with an interest in quilts & quilting.

Not to be critical (tho I am a critic), The Quilter's Catalog does not mention (that I could find), the Barn Quilt. For sure, Barn Quilts are not quilting! Could Barn Quilts be considered a part (a new part), of the quilt world? I am a firm believer that we will be seeing quilt blocks hung on barns and sheds from coast-to-coast (and further). I think that we all have a story connected to quilting, and that quilt blocks (traditional & new), all have a story to share.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Designer Barn

Several weeks ago I ran across the blog of a profesional photographer by the name of David c.h. Brown. He is from North Bay, Ontario, on the shores of Lake Nipissing. Included in the bolg is an image that he posted back in February '08, of a Barn Quilt just south of New Liskerd. He calls this a designer barn. I have not been able to identify any others in Ontario, or anywhere else in Canada.

Here is the link to his picture.

Does anyone know of any more in the area ?

There must be a story here...

Beam me back Scotty! I have seen the mountain... actually, I have a hard time getting back down the mountain. Mostly because it is so easy to find things that I would rather be doing. Even spending hours working on fixing rental property in the mountains is preferable to mowing the grass in the 90+ degree days just a few short miles away. My wife and I share two homes. One is above 3,000 feet in the N.C. mountains, and it is where I would rather spend my summer. It is a short drive to great hiking, paddling, and yes... We even like to ride bikes in the mountains. Last week, my wife and I were working our own bike & kayak shuttle (ride bikes to where we dropped our boats, and paddle back), when I experienced my most recent Barn Quilt Moment. If anyone can identify the name or origin of the quilt block, or if you happen to know the story behind it, I would love to know.

So... meanwhile... I pick my son up from Boy Scout Camp, and he tells me it was the best camping trip ever! Well, I am not sure if I should feel insulted, but I am certainly happy for him. A week of high adventure hiking and rafting, and his two favorite jokes are: What's the difference between a catfish and a river guild? One is slimy, smells and has whiskers... the other is just a fish. Then, What does a fish say when it hits a brick wall ? Dam!

It's great to be a kid! or have one!

Thursday, July 10, 2008


I have a moment to sit and check my mail, and to see what has happened in the world of Barn Quilts over the past 10 days. I am alone for an hour, but will be on the road tomorrow, for a weekend with the Scottish Clans on Grandfather Mountain.

I did notice a wonderful story in the Le Mars Daily Sentinel, about the Ahlers family of Le Mars, Iowa. They are living on the family farm that turns 100 years old this year. In honor of reaching this century mark, the Ahlers family (with four childern 12 - 16), have made an artistic (Barn Quilt), depiction of their windmill that still hangs in the Iowa sky. With symbolic colors, and lots of love, this is the type of Barn Quilt that beams pride, and inspires others.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

on holiday!

I want to wish anyone that may stop by, the very best of Fourth of July holidays. Be safe, make your neighbors feel good if you can, remember all of your friends and family, and take good care of those pets. I will be gone for the next week, but would be thrilled to find a comment when I return here.

Lots & Lots o' LOVE

Thursday, June 26, 2008

plus a little more

On the heading for my Barn Quilt Web-Site list, I also included the words "plus a little more". This notice is about the little more ( Amish Quilt Gardens Tour ), in Elkhart, Indiana (and also Bristol, Middlebury, Nappanee, Shipshewana, Wakarusa and Goshen, Indiana). The good folk of Elkhart County have taken the art of the Quilt Garden to a new level, and in doing so have included seveal large painted Quilt Blocks in various place around the county. I was not able to find a list or map of just the painted Quilt Blocks, but it all looks like fun. There is a cute video clip about one of the Painted Quilts on their home page, and also one hanging at Goshen College that you can check out in the Goshen College News.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

just south of Heaven

Well, YeHa y'all... I just added Cobb County, Georgia to the list of Barn Quilt web sights. I am a Carolina boy, but I know a little bit about north Georgia. It's beautiful country, and still hangin' on to it's rural past. I am not sure why I most always think of rural when I think of quilts, but I do. Now this here collection of Barn Quilts (maybe not "barn" quilts) has appeared in the community of Powder Springs, and it's called the Southern Quilt Trail. They be located a hair north of the Atlanta outer-belt, just west of Marietta and a stone's throw south of Heaven (the north Georgia mountains).

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Graveyard Quilt

There is a recent news story in the Herald-Dispatch in Huntington, West Virginia about a new Quilt Block. Across the river (actually around the bend from Huntington) is the town of Ashland, Kentucky that has a new Quilt Block adorning the Ashland Flood Wall, thanks to the ABC (Ashland, Boyd County and Catlettsburg) Quilt Alley. Ashland is on the banks of the Ohio River, (across from Ohio), a stones throw from West Virginia. In 1839, in Lewis County, Kentucky, Elizabeth Mitchell created a quilt that depicts the graveyard of her two sons, whom were buried in Ohio. She was absorbed with grief when she designed this walnut dyed, tan and calico quilt, and it depicts the Mitchell burial plot with small coffins. There is a book (which I have not read), written about this quilt, and the original quilt still exists. The Kentucky Historical Society has an image on line of the Mitchell Graveyard Quilt. It does not appear that the flood wall image is a copy of the original. That seems as if it would be a little morbid.

Monday, June 23, 2008

this is more than odd

I may have totally lost my mind. With all of the events in my life seemingly on a good and promising path, a twist of major proportions has appeared. I have agreed to let my ex-wife move into my basement... very, very short term. This is being done with my current wife’s blessing. While I see this as a benevolent act, I pray it is not my undoing. It is in fact my current wife (and bride, as I see myself as a newlywed after a year and a half), that has been an instigator and champion of this idea. I wish my ex the best, but this seems a delicate situation that at best is “not common”.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

"it only gets better"

My history has a few interesting stories. After nearly 55 years, I should be able to talk about where I have been, and at least some accomplishments along the way. My largest single accomplishment is being father to a wonderful 14 year old boy. There are many parents that have advised me that “it only gets better”. Whenever I hear that, I always take a moment to study the messenger and their propensity for sarcasm. My son is quite a handful now… often demanding, but always a joy.

I was born a Virginian, have live almost my entire life as a Tar Heal, and have deep family roots to the Palmetto State. I went to school at East Carolina, and now live in Western North Carolina. When I am away from home, and I am asked where I am from, I often respond with just “Carolina”. For me, North Carolina is by far the best place on the rock to live. We have fabulous mountains, comfortable beaches and a vast area (regions), of sand hills, rolling piedmont and foothills. There is a balance of urban and rural, but we are in danger of loosing the rural areas, and the country customs and lifestyle that seemed so common and invincible just a few years ago. Yes, this means that in some areas we are loosing the barns too.

The focus of starting my Blog (Barn Quilt Memories), and the social network on Ning (Barn Quilting), has been to find some common meeting place to share the excitement, information, ideas and fun that Barn Quilts have brought to so many people. I was not brought up on a farm, but I have childhood memories of playing on farms and in old barns. There was not a quilter in my family, but I remember the soft warm covers, sewn in bright colorful patterns that were a part of many of the households that I visited and stayed in. In some way, the Barn Quilt has refocused my memories into a twenty first century mix of 1960’s pop art and the quilting circles common in the 1890’s. I have this notion of a long-arm quilting machine linking up with the gambrel roofed, hay loft, and spitting out brightly colored laughter that the entire world could see.

In the fall of 2007, my wonderful wife and I were returning from a bicycle adventure in Virginia, when we stopped in to enjoy the last few minutes of a small country craft fair. One of the vendors there was selling plywood panels that were painted to resemble quilt blocks. There were 1’ x 1’, and 2’ x 2’, and even one 4’ x 4’ panel. I was immediately taken by them, and when I inquired, I was amazed at the high prices that they were asking. Being a cost engineer for a high end furniture manufacture, I started asking myself why this cost would so high. In my mind I was crunching the numbers, and trying to visualize the dollars needed to cover the labor (and materials, and overhead), that would be involved.

Then on our way back home we ran across not just one, but two 8’ x 8’ Barn Quilts hanging on barns up in Ashe County, North Carolina. I was blown away. I have referred to this experience as having a "Barn Quilt Moment". It could have been a lot of things (more likely a combination of things), that made my mind go into a state of needing to know more. I had never heard of a Barn Quilt, and I had no idea what had just happened. Starting with an internet search, I was surprised by what I found. There where pictures of Barn Quilts, and stories about enthusiastic arts organizations, economic development councils, and stories about quilt patterns and old barns, and a history of a new arts movement that I had been totally unaware of.

There is more to this story…

Here is some Barn Quilt news from the past two weeks:

Kelly Evans-Wilson will continue to serve as a co-chair of the Champaign County (Ohio), Barn Quilt Tour. She was most recently Executive Director of the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Bureau. Ms Evans-Wilson will now be employed by Vernon Funeral Home, and looks forward to spending time with her family.

There will be a Tennessee Appalachian Quilt Trail license plate for sale as soon as the State of Tennessee gets 1,000 pre-orders. 40% of the additional $35.00 that a special plate will cost goes to the Tennessee Arts Commission. I figure that to be $14,000. I have not seen the design yet, but it should be colorful.

Pappy's Quilting Place on Sevierville Road in Maryville, Tennessee has just installed an 8’ x 8’ Quilt Block with a Log Cabin Design. This is a part of the Appalachian Quilt Trail promoted by the Clinch-Powell Resource Conservation and Development Council.

The Coshocton County (Ohio) Arts and Culture Alliance have put up four more quilt barn squares, in time for the Great Ohio Bicycle Adventure (GOBA) riders to see. One of the loops that will be ridden for the GOBA will include the seven barns of the quilt barn trail on Ohio 643 to Ohio 83 from New Bedford to Coshocton.

On June 11, at the home of Carol and Richard Raynor, east of Marshall, Missouri, the Barn Quilts of the Boonslick Region, unveiled the "Farmer's Daughter" quilt square. This is a project sponsored by the Boonslick Tourism Council. The council covers three counties, Saline, Cooper and Howard. They have six objectives, which are agri-tourism, folk art of the American Quilt, agricultural architecture, cultural identity, economic development and community sustainability. This is the first Barn Quilt to be hung in Saline County.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

The Magic is in...

That which is the magic of the Barn Quilt, may also be the key to a happy life (I know that this is a big stretch of the imagination). On a very primal level the quilt pattern (in this case a very large quilt pattern), is art composed of color, and symmetry, or maybe even asymmetrical symmetry. It can be a joy to even an infant. There are lots of joys, and pleasures of life that are little more than stimulations of our senses, and can be (and should be), enjoyed for the simple gifts that they bring us. Yet, I believe that there is more to this Barn Quilt magic.

What makes mankind special is not that we enjoy certain pleasures, but that we can assign values to objects, and ideas, and to memories. It is the story that needs to be told. It is the story of the mother, or daughter, or great aunt or the neighbors that created an image... that is the gift to your senses today. It is the hours of careful crafting, and sewing that was also a sharing of some stories, and the creating of others. There is the story of the quilt, and now there is the story of the artist, and the barn, and the farm, and the family that lives here, and maybe the ones before…

The key to a happy life (on one level), is not just the ability to feel pleasure, but the ability to feel the pleasure by the knowing of the story. Maybe it is the pleasure of telling the story, or maybe we just need to know that there is a story. The key is the story. There is no story if we do not have a way to communicate it. In my short existence, I see time and time again that the problems between people are so often created by some type of miscommunication. It may not be that words are understood incorrectly, but often it is that the words were never spoken to begin with.

As we learn to express ourselves efficiently, we find that there are usually some questions that will need to be answered without being asked. When experiencing a Barn Quilt Moment (seeing a new Barn Quilt for the first time), what are the primary questions ? and then what are the questions that follow ? There are many examples of descriptions and stories that are assigned to Barn Quilts. Some are more poetic while others are merely utilitarian (just the facts ma’am). How would you describe your Barn Quilt ?

Monday, June 2, 2008

Follow the quilt barn trails @ CSM

I read a story today about Quilt Barns on the Christian Science Monitor. Their web address is The name of the article is: Follow the quilt barn trails, Quilt barn paintings make public art accessible to rural communities – and tourists.; By Jim Winnerman Contributor to The Christian Science Monitor from the June 2, 2008 edition. Now I wasn't going to copy this article (I have gotten good at copy and paste at work), but they have this little button that I can click on that says: Republish. So, I click on that and I am told that I can re-publish this article on the internet for 30 days, for just $40.00. Thanks but no thanks. I am more than happy to share the link to the CSM Webpage. I shouldn't get in trouble for that ;-)

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Farnhamville, Iowa

Near the center of Iowa is the small community of Farnhamville. With less than 500 people (130 +/- families), living in an area of 0.7 square miles of Calhoun County, they boast of having more than twenty quilt squares painted and hung on various buildings (including homes) around town. I found a story about the Farnhamville Barn Quilts published on the Net by Farm News. The Farm News also has several more Barn Quilts stories (and other stories about barns), posted under something called Barn Tab. It just sounded like fun, so I thought I would share.

The Calhoun County website describes Farnhamville as: friendly and clean, with good streets, reasonable electricity and water, and several good businesses – including the largest grain elevator in Iowa.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Copy Right or Wrong ?

I have a moment on a gorgeous (almost) summer evening to leave a message that will resonate with more than just Barn Quilters, but also with quilters in general. I have only recently been introduced to the world of quilting, yet I was quick to see that there are millions whom have enjoyed this pastime, hobby, avocation, vocation and passion for years. Even for a relative newbe, I sense that there are two (tho not mutually exclusive), camps of fiber artists that quilt. There are the quilters that will do what feels and looks right, and because they are creating projects for themselves alone, they have no need to consider that by using the patterns created by someone else, they may actually be infringing on the rights (copyrights) of another. Then there are professional crafts artists. These are quilters that sew in groups, or individually for profit or as competition. By entering their quilts in local or regional shows, county fairs or even using the art as a church raffle, they will need to consider copyrights and the law.

Certainly, every artist would like to think that their art is an original, but in the world of quilting there is sharing. A lot of sharing! That is how people learn, and get better, and sharing is one of the reasons for the groups, societies, quilt circles and magazines and the quilt shops selling patterns along with a bazillion different fabrics. In fact, if there wasn't sharing and copying of quilts and quilt patterns, I doubt that there would be the number of quilts (and quilters), that there are today. I have been keenly aware of discussions that I have come across describing the rights of individuals to copyrighted patterns and quilts. It is nice when someone plainly states that this pattern is an original (with copyright protection), but for many of the individual patterns that are being used, they fall outside of the copyright protection... I am not an attorney, but there is a lot of interesting information on the internet, and a well written site provided by the
Library of Congress, and the U.S. Copyright Office.

On the
Ning Social Network - Barnquilting, I do believe that there is enough to question the rights and legality of copyrighting a Barn Quilt pattern. The majority (but by no means all) of the Barn Quilt patterns are based on traditional quilt block patterns, usually from before 1900. These quilt block patterns, in and of themselves can not be copyrighted, but what about the Barn Quilt ? Are there adequate protections for the artists, organizations and individuals that have created or claim ownership ? What do you think, and what protections have you taken ?

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Is there anybody out there ?

I am very content in my belief that my path is charted, but still unknown. I have started a blog called Barn Quilt Memories, and what is referred to as a social network that is devoted to Barn Quilts called (what else...) Barnquilting. For weeks I have toyed with the medium, and there has not yet been any response. I have a store on Cafepress called the Barn Quilt Shop and it has not become a hit... not really discovered. All is well! I am not discouraged, but I do wonder what my next step will be. I suppose that I will in the next few days start telling the personal story of what has brought me to this place. Stay tuned!

Monday, May 26, 2008

RSS Feed

For anyone catching this blog as an RSS feed on , please take a moment and look on the list below for your local Barn Quilt site, home page, or information page of the local supporting agency. These sites and Barn Quilt Projects are not set up the same, and I think that variety and diversification is a good thing. I hope that the freedom of expression and experimentation continues to thrive throughout the land.

Below is a list of the Barn Quilt Projects (and/or Web Sites, or pages of Web Sites), that are from the sponsoring agency (at least the ones that I have found). Please check to see if yours is represented. If you would like to add a site to this list, it is being maintained on the Blogger site: , or you can e-mail me at , or at . If I live long enough, the confusion will settle into a more direct form of communication, but I am still trying to find what works...

Ia, Butler County
Ia, Clay County
Ia, Fayette County
Ia, Green County
Ia, Grundy County
Ia, Hamilton County
Ia, Hancock County
Ia, Homboldt County
Ia, Plymouth County
Ia, Pocahontas County
Ia, Sac County
Ia, Washington County
Il, McHenry County
Ky, Bath, Carter, Elliott, Greenup, Menifee, Montgomery, Morgan and Rowan Counties
Ky, Boyd County
Ky, Breckenridge County
Ky, Flemming County
Ky, Jessamine County
Ky, Lewis County
Ky, Rowan County
Ky, Scott County
Md, Garrett County
Mi, Alcona County
NC, Ashe County
NC, Avery County
NC, Madison County
NC, Mitchell and Yancey Counties
NC, Watauga County
NC, Wilkes County
NC, Yadkin County
NY, Orleans County
Oh, Adams County
Oh, Athens County
Oh, Brown County
Oh, Champaign County
Oh, Fayette, Highland and Ross Counties
Oh, Harrison County
Oh, Miami County
Oh, Monroe County
Oh, Pike County
Oh, Vinton County
Tn, Carter County
Tn, Claiborne County
Tn, Cocke County
Tn, Grainger County
Tn, Green County
Tn, Hamblen County
Tn, Hancock County
Tn, Hawkins County
Tn, Johnson County
Tn, Knox County
Tn, Sullivan County
Tn, Unicoi County
Tn, Union County
Tn, Washington County
Tx, Terry County
Wi, Green County

Wednesday, May 21, 2008


The word for the day is "agritourism". This was a word that was coined some years ago (I haven't done the research), but I believe that it is ment to encompass many things. Mainly it is a draw created to get the more-urban into a more-rural environment temporarily... as a tourist. Maybe for an extended vacation, or maybe just for a few hours.

The current Wikipedia definition says: Agritourism is a style of vacation which is normally on farms. This may include the chance to help with farming tasks during the visit. Agritourism is often practiced in wine growing regions in Italy and Spain. In America, Agritourism is wide-spread and includes any farm open to the public at least part of the year. Tourists can pick fruits and vegetables, ride horses, taste honey, learn about wine, shop in farm gift shops and farm stands for local and regional produce or hand-crafted gifts, and much more.

The "dude ranch" is included here, but so is the barn quilt. I know that some of the Barn Quilt Projects in Western North Carolina were started with funding from the Blue Ridge Natural Heritage Area. They are self described as: a place designated by the United States Congress where natural, cultural, historic, and recreational resources combine to form a cohesive, nationally distinctive landscape arising from patterns of human activity shaped by geography. These patterns make National Heritage Areas representative of the national experience through the physical features that remain and the traditions that have evolved in the areas. Continued use of the National Heritage Areas by people whose traditions helped to shape the landscapes enhances their significance. (your federal tax dollars at work)

This money was channeled thru the Handmade in America organization. Since 1993, these folks have encouraged and supported the local arts and artisans of the region. When you focus on economic development there are also (can be), many supporters from local and state government. The Barn Quilt arts movement has the underlying spirit of supporting our rural neighbors, but I still like to think of this as stand alone, art for art’s sake. Can this be art for the sake of the community? Look at the pride that is generated by ownership (even by a neighbor, or tourist), of a place, and space in time, that we can call our own.

Comment here, or on

Monday, May 19, 2008

stealing moments

It is all that I can do right now... to steal a few moments between being the taxi driver for my son, getting shopping and house work done, trying to fix the car, scout treasury reports, not to mention my real job. There is other stuff on my plate, yet I keep coming back to the Barn Quilts. I think that I will post several topics for discussion on the Ning "Barn Quilting" Network. There is a way to create and post to a blog on the network, but I may use this Blogger format to post my personal opinions, and try not to get carried away on Ning. Actually Blogger would be a good place for me to explain the question, or statement, or explain why it interests me. I don't want to make my Ning network statements too lengthy or it will be difficult for people to comment and allow themselves to feel ownership of the discussion.

If anyone acidentally (or otherwise), reads this post, please take a few seconds and go to I guess that (maybe) you will need to sign in to post any comments, but there is no reason that you would have to use your real name (unless you wanted to come back one day). Anyway, I am trying to connect some interesting and creative people that share a common interest. If you don't want to join right now, maybe you have a mate or buddy on-line, or a messanger contact that has mentioned Barn Quilts, or maybe just someone you know in one of those states (Ia, Ky, Md, Mi, NC, NY, Oh, Tn, Tx, or Wi).

Saturday, May 17, 2008


take just a minute (actually 4:29), and view this video from the Farmer's Almanac

(linked here)

Friday, May 16, 2008

Time flies

How the time does fly. My last post was in a whirlwind of moving stuff off of the farm, and for the past few weeks my life has seemed a little nuts. Actually my life has been nuts for more than a few weeks, but we don't need to go there tonight. I started another blog about the same time as this one, thinking that it was easier to create and maintain a list on MSN Spaces. Well, I guess that you can teach an old dog new tricks (see list at right). Because I have not been posting, I have not been getting any traffic. Let's see if we can get this changed. Right now I have more than 50 Barn Quilt web-sites listed. It's worth a look-see... See if your favorite is here. If not, I would love to add any that are sent my way.

I am also starting a "social network" on Ning called Barn Quilting. My plan is to be listener and a facilitator, but I do not want to tell anyone how to do their thing. Let's share a little information, some pictures, and some laughs. I am open to any and all ideas, but this is a family network, so let's keep it clean. I have not come across another idea that has as much potential as Barn Quilting to connect the communities that we want so much to share.

Find more photos like this on Barn Quilting

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Times, they are a changin'

Well, the farm is sold. Everything (most everything), got loaded and moved. There is still a truck & trailer load to unpack. That is what I will be about today. I will be able to spend a little more time here in the coming days, and I hope to meet a few friends with an interest in Barn Quilts.

A quick FYI note...
The current AAA e-zine called Home & Away has a nice article on the Barn Quilts of Miami County, Ohio. Linked to: Home & Away

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Lots more to do!


I wish that I had the time, or felt as if I have the time to sit down every day to post a few thoughts here. I have started removing items from the farm, and I am also getting the legal contracts drawn to sell the farm while the grantee gets a title search done.... This afternoon, I was on my way out to pick up my son from baseball practice, and there is a partial rainbow running right down to the farm which is about 5 miles away. It was so cool! This is when I need a camera in the truck, but not today.... I also need to do some Boy Scout treasury work, to see what kind of money we made over the weekend selling spaghetti at the church, and of course I have my own stack of bills calling me. Life is good, but very busy.... I few weeks ago I started to piece together a store on Cafepress for the Barn Quilt Project. It is far from done, but I decided to go ahead and open it ready-or-not. There will be more on the store later, but Sunday night on the way to bed I got an e-mail saying that I had sold my first item. What a great feeling! It's not time to celebrate. There is much work to do, but if you should read this post, please take a moment to visit the store (click here, or on the image above), and all opinions and suggestions are appreciated. Remember that it is a work-in-process.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Committed, or should be

Today there is a rather significant change occurring in my life... how I see myself, and how others see me. After posting my first entry on this blog just two days ago, I received a phone call, resulting in an offer to purchase a piece of property affectionately known to me as the farm. I have accepted. Partially to help fund my efforts at starting a real business enterprise centered on the Barn Quilt idea (and for a multitude of other reasons), I have decided to sell the farm. I could talk for days about the 10 acres that I own, and the 15 years of hard work getting it into shape. There were the quiet meditative hours, and drone of the mower, the freezing cold and the burning summer sun. The farm has been a jewel in my life, that in many ways defined who I was. This is a turning point for me. I accept this challenge. This is an opportunity to chase a dream that I have been planning and working toward for some time. How I got here, and where I am going, will be the story unfolding...

Thursday, April 17, 2008

a beautiful spring day

Welcome me!

I do not intend to spend a great deal of time writing about myself, but this is a personal blog... I do not intend to delve too deeply into politics, but I am not asleep... I do want to share what has become a passion of mine, and that is the wonderful world of Barn Quilts (a.k.a. Quilt Barns). There is a growing number of people that know what a Barn Quilt is, but I fear that we are still but a small minority.

For me, being excited once by an unexpected explosion of color while driving down a quiet country road, could have left me with a sense that this is not much more than eye candy. To be surprised and titillated again, and again, has me thinking that there is more to the story. To find out that the creators of this art are not necessarily artists, but communities of friends and neighbors, has exited me. To discover that there are stories that are being shared about the history of the quilts and quilt blocks, and the people that made them, and that this is not a local phenomenon, has me convinced that what I am witnessing is a true grassroots movement that may forever change the memories created on trips down our back roads and blue highways.

What I will be sharing with you is an exploration of the Barn Quilt movement. I intend to help provide information, links, and experiences, and make some new friends along the way. This is not a short term project. I do not venture down this road without being aware that there are a lot of involved and passionate people that have already spent a great deal of time, and energy to get this art movement as far along as it is today, but there is a vision of what may lay ahead. I also have a personal mission of wanting to help those community groups and art councils to fund the growth and maintenance of these projects. This takes time, but there is a real feeling that we are all on the cusp of what Malcolm Gladwell has called a tipping point.