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Barn Quilts and the American Quilt Trail Movement Paperback – February, 2012


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Barn Quilts and the American Quilt Trail Movement + From the Bedroom to the Barnyard: A 9-Block Sampler Honoring Barn Quilts + Elm Creek Quilts - Eco Tote
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Swallow Press; 1 edition (February 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780804011389
  • ISBN-13: 978-0804011389
  • ASIN: 0804011389
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 1 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #38,275 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

When German immigrants arrived in America, they brought with them a passion for brightly colored geometric patterns that they stitched into quilts that kept them toasty on frigid winter nights. They also decorated their otherwise plain barns with hex signs serving as talismans or as purely exuberant decoration. A decade ago, an enterprising Ohioan combined these traditions and mounted outsize quilt patterns in bright colors on old barns. Others quickly followed suit, and now many Midwestern and Eastern states have “quilt trails” that tourists pursue in outdoor “museums” of folk art. Parron and Groves have documented these trails with full-color photographs that show how imaginative many artists have become, incorporating butterflies, horses, flags, and other natural and man-made designs within the more abstract geometries of traditional barn quilts. The text profiles many of the artists whose work dazzlingly enlivens America’s farm country. --Mark Knoblauch

Review

"The book printed on high quality paper with dozens of captioned photographs is everything that a lover of traditional folk culture could desire. Author Suzi Parron and barn quilt pioneer Donna Sue Groves take the reader to the origins of the Quilt Trails in Appalachia and then to other states, particularly those of the Heartland. The reader meets the dozens of local heroines (and heroes) who organized the Trails in their communities." --National Barn Alliance

“Parron and Groves have documented these trails with full-color photographs that show how imaginative many artists have become, incorporating butterflies, horses, flags, and other natural and man-made designs within the more abstract geometries of traditional barn quilts. The text profiles many of the artists whose work dazzlingly enlivens America’s farm country.”  
— Booklist




“Bravo to Suzi Parron and Donna Sue Groves for bringing to light the colorful and rich history of the barn quilt movement. It’s a tale of heart, hope, and deep rural roots. . . roots that started in Adams County but spread quickly across the land. Parron’s deep research and Donna Sue’s love of the subject provide a unique chapter in America’s art history. Happily, a country road is no longer the same.”
— Doug Weaver,  publisher, Kansas City Star Books




“Barn quilts are a perfect fit with our area; they are an excellent companion to the other ag-tourism opportunities in Green County. This has been a great project because it ties the entire county together with an artistic rural theme, promotes county-wide pride, and gets our visitors to all the communities for a true adventure in exploring the roads less traveled along the way.”
— Noreen Rueckert, Green County, WI Tourism




“The barn quilt project is one of the most successful and satisfying projects we’ve ever been involved with and we’re excited that this book documents the spread of this creative idea across our nation and beyond.”
— Harold and Sue Peyton, Sac County, Iowa




“A great book to use as a reference to plan a trip or to simply learn more about the (barn quilt) movement and take in the beauty of some of the creations that grace county roads and highways throughout North America.”
The Budget


“Parron and Groves have documented these trails with full-color photographs that show how imaginative many artists have become, incorporating butterflies, horses, flags, and other natural and man-made designs within the more abstract geometries of traditional barn quilts. The text profiles many of the artists whose work dazzlingly enlivens America’s farm country.”
Booklist


“(Barn Quilts and the American Quilt Trail Movement) is everything that a lover of traditional folk culture could desire. … The reader meets dozens of local heroines (and heroes) who organized the Trails in their communities.”
The Barn Journal


“(W)hat we have here is a larger, older, and all-encompassing American story about how we make claims to places, how we maintain community, and how we uphold shared values…. To tell this story, as Parron and Groves have so thoughtfully done, is to illuminate the extraordinary beauty that often comes from…community and nation-building tasks.”
Northwest Ohio History

More About the Author

I am often asked how it is that I--a woman from a state with very few barns--ended up spending three years studying barn quilts. Though the first barn quilt appeared on the scene in 2001, I actually never heard of quilt barns (as they are sometimes called) or quilt trails until 2008.

I love to travel, usually with a destination, but seldom with a fixed timetable. In 2008, I set off on a road trip from Georgia to Wyoming with Yellowstone as the turnaround point but with no certainty as to when I'd arrive. Being a teacher does, at times, have its privileges!

I travel the back roads, taking the highway to jump from one area to another and then wandering off to see whatever appears It might be a statue of the world's largest groundhog or a man with a chainsaw carving bears by the roadside; I seldom go half an hour without stopping to explore.

On the first evening of my trip, I spotted a barn quilt, in Cadiz, Kentucky. I wasn't looking for barn quilts, but having found one I wanted to find out more. I checked online--the back roads do come with wi-fi -to find a barn quilt book, but none existed. My curiosity got the best of me, and I ended up in Adams County, Ohio, where Donna Sue Groves began the barn quilt trail. She and I collaborated on the book, which begins with her story.

Three years and about eight hundred barn quilts later, I can safely say that I am well-versed in the subject. I did not travel to every barn quilt trail, but I did communicate with organizers of each trail in the country to find out a bit about their barn quilt projects.

The book is the story of both how the quilt trail came to be and the many ways that barn quilts have taken on meaning for those who create them. The story of my travels and many of the barn quilts I encountered can be found on my blog--americanquilttrail.blogspot.com; the best have been saved for the book itself.

For more info on barn quilts, visit my website www.barnquiltinfo.com

Customer Reviews

Suzi Parron has done a fabulous job in her book Barn Quilts!!
css
The book is filled with beautiful color pictures, as I expected it would be.
A. Smith
I have really enjoyed reading this book & looking @ the pictures.
weezer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A. Smith on February 19, 2012
Format: Paperback
Before I received one of Suzi's Barn Quilt calendars as a gift I had never even heard of barn quilts, let alone a barn quilt trail. I quickly became fascinated with the topic and was eagerly awaiting the publication of the book. I was thrilled when my signed copy arrived a couple of weeks ago, and have not been disappointed. The book is filled with beautiful color pictures, as I expected it would be. What was unexpected, however, was the warmth with which Suzi describes her encounters with the people involved, from the painters to the barn owners to the school children, in short, everyone she met in this wonderful project.

Keep up the good work, Suzi! When can we expect Volume II?
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Dave Snow on February 16, 2012
Format: Paperback
I have been waiting for a book like this for some time. I have been painting barn quilts for about 2 years and have been searching for a reference source devoted to the history of barn quilts and the personal stories of the barn quilt owners. This book does that! Suzi Parron, as a writer, has been able to mentally allow me to ride with her to each location in the course of her research. I have truly enjoyed the ride and have been energized to continue to create lasting memories for my patrons.
Dave Snow, barnquiltsbydave.com
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By css on February 22, 2012
Format: Paperback
Suzi Parron has done a fabulous job in her book Barn Quilts!! The history behind each quilt, the pictures and the overall flow of the book are wonderful!! I found it well organized, the index was quite helpful and her personal stories add "the icing to the cake"!!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By reedy on February 19, 2012
Format: Paperback
I wasn't sure what to expect but I've thoroughly enjoyed this book. It took me on a journey across America. The interesting stories and colorful photos made me feel as if I was right there. I'd heard about the barn quilts but had no idea there was so much behind them.

I've ordered a copy for my sister the quilter. I'm certain she's going to love it.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Margot on May 24, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Suzi Parron's new book clears up the mysteries about the wonderful, brightly-colored quilt squares that have appeared on rural buildings coast-to-coast. While bringing people into the country side on barn quilt tours, the brilliant decorations are a source of pride and identity for rural residents. We're just getting started painting them in mid-Missouri and it's great to have a record of what's gone before. This is a fun, well-written and researched book with lots of illustrations and will be a beloved addition to the libraries of quilters, barn lovers and art afficianados everywhere.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By bookreader on March 6, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Barn Quilts opens up a whole new aspect for anyone who is passionate about quilting. The quilts are paintings replicating traditional patterns which pay hommage to the women who also played their part in the pioneering movement of America. Reading about the founder of this creative movement is fascinating and moving and leads you into further study. The text would have benefitted from a few more illustrations but that is its only downside. A great book and definitely one for quilters to enjoy at their leisure.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By weezer on May 16, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have really enjoyed reading this book & looking @ the pictures. I first checked this book out from our local library, but then decided that I wanted to own it. The original barn quilt trail is close to us & I had seen some of the barn quilts. Now I have really enjoyed reading about them & learning how the movement originated.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Margaret Timmerman on May 21, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book tells the story of the Barn Quilt trail movement in a bunch of states. Much of it is fairly boring, and it could be a lot shorter and tell the story just as well. The writing is fair. The photos are quite nice, but the author frequently talks about barns/quilts for which there are no photos, which is frustrating. More photos and less text would make it more interesting--just photos in the order they are along the road, with a short story about each one, would be more effective.
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