Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Westering Women Block of the Month 2016


In 2016 we are going to feature a Block of the Month here for 12 months called Westering Women, celebrating the women who walked west on the overland trails in the 19th century.

Photo of family and an oxen-pulled wagon, about 1900

On the last Wednesday of each month beginning January 27, 2016, I'll post a free pattern and history lesson about America's western migration. Westering Women will have patterns for 12" block designs, each chosen for a traditional name that recalls a location along the old trails from the Missouri River to the Pacific coast.

Amelia Stewart Knight left a diary of her 1853 trip

You'll get a monthly view of the history of the western migration through the eyes of the women who kept diaries and wrote letters home a century and a half ago.

Wagon train from Harper's Weekly in 1858

I'll post the monthly lessons here at the Civil War Quilts blog on Wednesdays (along with regular Saturday posts about Civil War quilts.)

Independence, Missouri published by Herrmann J. Meyer
in 1854

So get your gear ready and meet us in a few weeks at the jumping off point on the Missouri River in Independence.

Re-creation of the interior of a wagon---spinning wheels were often tossed along the trail.




What should you pack in your small valise? Any kind of fabric you like. We'll be using Civil-War era reproductions prints such as my Old Cambridge Pike and Alice's Scrapbag lines, but you might want to use solids or brights..



Here's a bunch of new Moda fabrics to think about. The colors are perfect for a mid-19th-century theme.

See Carrie's post on Moda's classic repros here:

69 comments:

Jacqueline said...

Even if I don't make the blocks I am looking forward to the journey. Thank you so much for all you do for us out here in blog land.

Happy New Year

Barb said...

I'm ready to play again! Surely I can manage 1 block a month. Maybe I can find a cast iron pot to store my work.
Happy New Year and new Project

Scrappy quilter said...

I am in

WoolenSails said...

Sounds like a fun project and I love the fabrics on the left. All of our good stores have closed so I will have to get up to the quilted crow and see the new store, but I think I have enough stash to keep me busy through the winter.

Debbie

CecileD said...

I have just finished my stars'top but ...one block a month, what a nice idea !
Woop ! I'm in again !
Thank you and happy new year Barbara !

Jeanne said...

I'm really looking forward to this new series! Already have my eye on both fabric lines too :)

Wendy Caton Reed said...

Yum! can't wait.

Barbara said...

Count me in, Barbara! I have the perfect fabrics :)

Deb Henricks said...

So glad to read this. Love the idea of the Westering Women history lessons. Now to find some fabrics -- I'm loving several fabric lines in the pictures you shared.

Rilene said...

I can hardly wait! Some of my ancestors were among these women in the last half of the 19th century. Those fabrics are just right!

Mary said...

My Pioneer Ancestor Patty Barlett Sessions wrote a Journal of her Midwifery across the plains to Utah. I wonder what Block would go with her adventure? Narcissa Whitman is another one I have interest in. Living near the Whitman Mission here in Walla Walla. The Oregon Trail pioneers are prevalent. Not just Sacajawea. I'll be watching for now.

Chantal L. said...

This the kind of wagon I want to get on! I'm a very petite woman, I won't take much room, I promise lol.
Happy New Year. ;^)

Deborah said...

Looking forward to this westerly journey. We visited the Applegate Trail museum this summer and have followed some of the Oregon trail in the past. Such interesting history of amazing adventurers.

Christine said...

I told myself no new starts until I finish my 20+ UFOs. But I will definitely enjoy the history you share I love it. Will save the patterns and will enjoy later. Thank you

Judy said...

This will be so interesting! Hope there are not too many flying geese. I'm willing to give it a whirl. I have a beautiful bundle of Harper's Ferry.

MaryT said...

I told myself that I would do a civil war repo quilt this year! I have been collecting and am so looking forward to this!

Maggey and Jim said...

Excited about this, can hardly wait to see. Years ago I did Butternut and blue, have it on one of my beds and love it so much..thanks

Themis Abdo said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Barbara said...

Yay! I'm so glad to see another block of the month! Can't wait!
Cookie
http://cookiescreek.com

Dena said...

The collection displayed is beautiful. Do you have a "guestament" of how much fabric we will need for the whole quilt? Thank you! I can't wait

Marina Brito de Campos said...

I already love this project. The history of the trails going West is one of my favorites! We like to travel the West and crossed the Oregon trail many times. We followed the trail at several places and visited many sites along the trail. In the spring of 2015 we were in Casper and visited the National Historic Interpretive Center. They show a wagon ride across the North Platte with al the activities people had to do every day and al the risks and dangers. I loved it. I am looking forward to your posts!

Katie Paxton said...

I am going to give this a try. Love the history posts. Being from Independence originally it will mean even more to me.
I will be using fabric from my inheritance from my sister, Linda Brannock.
Excited to get started.

Anonymous said...

Can't wait to get started. Already have Alice's scrapbag and 2 yards of coordinating fabric from the line that I was wondering what pattern to use so I am ready!!

Sally said...

I'm ready! Looking forward to another historic adventure with you.

Cristina Sánchez said...

Deseando empezar, me entusiasma el proyecto. Intentare conseguir las telas en España.
Un saludo
Cristina

BettyLou said...

I am looking forward to joining your latest quilt-long. I haven't sewn in two years as I lost my quiltIng mojo. I so enjoyed following and making all the blocks for your Civil War blocks several years ago. Love reading the stories that you share.

Wendy Caton Reed said...

Still trying to get my "Time Warp" stars together, but I think I can keep up one block a month. (at least I hope I can).

LONA said...

I am in! I will try to keep up! :) Sounds like fun!

linda said...

Im in but will be using brights - because I believe that these gutsy women would have used them if they had a choice:)

Dorry said...

I am super excited to read this news! Dena told me about it today when we were hanging a quilt exhibit that includess my Threads of Memory and Grandmothers Choice quilts. Hope I have time to have a grand tidy up in my sewing room first before we set out on the wagon trail. Yipee!

O'Quilts said...

I am so in...I have been waiting for something to cheer me and get me going..

Judy said...

I am so happy I didn't miss the first block! I look forward to this. I wonder if I can use hst's instead of flying geese. I think you will let us know. Thank you very much.
Judy

pinkdeenster said...

Looking forward to this, too! As Dorry mentioned, we were discussing it! And now to play with fabric to decide what inspires me with the Westering Women theme. I'll enjoy getting back into this group of fabulous quilters.

kim kerschl said...

Hi Barbara! So looking forward to this BOM. The fabrics - Alice's Scrapbag and Old Cambridge Pike are just gorgeous. I work in a small quilt shop in Viginia (The Quiltery) and we have both lines. People are loving them as are all the employees! Would love to have you visit our shop someday.... We are housed in a Civil War era log cabin and attached general store.
Kim from Fairfield, Virginia

Carmen Dickinson said...

I am looking forward to participating in this project. Thank you for leading and inspiring us.

Carmen Dickinson said...

I am looking forward to participating in this project. Thank you for leading and inspiring us.

Kristy Regnitz said...

How do I join, I'm new to this?

Anonymous said...

Love reading about early history in the US? From down under. Will follow with interest.

Janny S. said...

Do I have to sign in?
Would love to.
Janny Schoneveld

Barbara Brackman said...

No signing in. Just check this blog on the last Wednesday of every month in 2016. Or subscribe by email so the info goes into your mail box.

ebwhite said...

I am looking forward to this one - surely I can do one block a month.

Lucy said...

I think I will join. Sounds so interesting!

Anne Sonner said...

I'm on board! My great-great-grandmother, Laura Kincaid, traveled on the Oregon Trail with her family in 1853. She was 7 years old at the time. Near Ft. Laramie she was run over by a wagon, but survived. Her older brother wrote about the journey. There is also a letter that her father wrote to relatives back in Missouri while traveling on the trail.

Mary Britton said...

Thank you Barbara for your wonderful patterns. I finished my Grandmother's Choice summer 2015 and started the Jane Austen. I have plans to use either your civil war patterns from 2011 or these Westering Women with a medallion center embroidered with the Nebraska state seal for a quilt to honor Nebraska's 150th birthday in 2017. I printed the seal from the internet and enlarged it a couple of years ago.

gibbygoo56 said...

I'm going to be following along on this journey! Thank You!

mamifleur said...

Me and my little Mother want to conquer the West!
  Happy New Year, Thanks Barbara!
Mamifleur

Sue Thompson said...

My wagon is packed and I am ready for the journey.

Lyndsey said...

I just need to get some fabric but have a trip planned this weekend to 2 of my favourite quilt shops so that will be sorted. I really looking forward to this .

Anonymous said...

I'm ready. My ggm and ggf father both walked that trail on the way to Illinois in 1835. Looking forward to the journey

Anonymous said...


Barbara This is a great idea. We'll be back in a time when fabric was previous. On the west track, women could not waste a piece. Back to the roots of american patchwork !
Catherine Paris France

desertskyquilts said...

I read my e-mail just in time! This is one of my particular interests, so I look forward to learning what you have to tell this year. Thank you!

cooneen said...

Thank you for all the research that you do for these quilt books. I am a great lover of history. You make the characters come alive making it even more exciting. Thank you for sharing so much information. We are all in your debt.

Kay Ahr said...

This reminds me of the days of teaching 5th grade back in the 1990's. We had a computer "game" called Oregon Trail. So here I go again but with quilt blocks! LOL

Sharon Joyner Griffith said...

Oh I just can't wait. I love history and I have lots of civil war fabrics that I have been waiting for the right project and this will be it. Thank you so much for sharing..

liniecat said...

For those of us following in the UK I can recommend a great supplier who offers Moda at very comptitive prices.
I can thoroughly recommend Shelagh Folgate.
The only thing you need do is be a member of the Facebook group she organises.
No fee involved but often free Moda patterns she unearths, as well advice on all manner of stitchy things.
https://www.facebook.com/groups/957257584341517/

Phyllis Thompson said...

This is dear to my heart. My grandparents traveled in a covered wagon from Missouri to homestead in Indian Territory (Oklahoma). They were both deaf and incredibly brave.

Donna Smith said...

I am in Australia and am just fascinated by this history. I would love to be part of this journey if ok.

Kellie Verts said...

Really looking forward to fascinating journey! So glad to be part of it!

Catherine Debrion said...

J’adore l’idée et même si mon anglais laisse à désirer je la suivrai et je quilterai aussi bien évidemment……. Moi qui ai acheté de superbes tissus à Boston …. Je vais les utiliser !!!!! Y aura t’il un livre ?
Bien cordialement et merci pour toutes les infos
Catherine

Kay Holm said...

Did I miss it? Looking all over?

O'faigh said...

Hello Barbara, I have been yearning for a block of the month.Perfect, a friend sent me some Reproduction fabrics in Christmas Colours. I have not made a Christmas Quilt since 2003.Looking forward to the coming months.Thank you. Regards Lyn

Stefanie said...

What a fantastic idea.
I needed something to jumpstart my quilting this year, I've sewn too many clothes lately.
Although all my stars are still packed in a box from moving, this I must do.

The mystical librarian of quilt history called, there is a vacant space waiting for your book on this topic

Mary T. said...

Thanks so much. I learn so much from you Barbara.

Pascale Cordier said...

Hi Barbara.
Thank you for this good idea. I'm in.
My english is not very good but i am going to progress !
My first block is done in 6".
have a good day.

Rina said...

Greetings from Italy!
I'm in , I do love your history and how the expansion started.
I think I can do one block a month. Thank you!
Rina, from Catania, italy

Jan Jones said...

I'm in please! Love the topic and eager to learn the history.

Jan Jones said...

Oh, just realized that I'm several months too late. This is the first time I've seen it. Maybe next time??

Jan Jones said...

Oh, just realized that I'm several months too late. This is the first time I've seen it. Maybe next time??

Jan Jones said...

I'm in please! Love the topic and eager to learn the history.