Barn quilts have come to the Sierra Valley.
Barn quilts honor the economic, cultural, and historical contribution of ranching and farming to our rural communities, while celebrating one of America’s historic art forms, the quilt block. Barn quilts become local landmarks helping to preserve our rural heritage and provide points of interest for visitors and sightseers. They contribute to local economies by incorporating art, agriculture, and local culture with an effort to promote tourism on the local, state, and national level. In the Sierra Valley, Barn quilts enhance local events like the Tour de Manure bicycle tour, creating destination points along the cycling route. The Sierra Valley Barn Quilt Project is centered in the Sierra Valley, which includes eastern Sierra County and portions of Plumas County.
Barn quilts are painted quilt blocks - usually single blocks fashioned on boards and then mounted on a barn. Quilt blocks come in all sizes, but traditionally are large, between 6ft x 6ft and 8ft x 8ft, depending on the size of the hosting structure. The pattern for a particular barn quilt may be chosen for myriad reasons. Often the barn quilt is a replica of a painted quilt that resides on the property or honors a loved one. A pattern may be selected because of its name; "Corn and Beans" is popular among farmers. Sometimes, the barn quilt is simply one whose pattern is appealing to either its creators or its owners.
Barn quilt trails can be found in rural counties throughout America. Barn quilt trails usually include a map of local barn quilts and lead tourists through the countryside, providing information on local history, culture, landscape, and may include other points of interest including local businesses. Groups including cyclists, motorcycle clubs, and Sunday drivers may enjoy a ride through the scenic Sierra Valley following the barn quilt trail. For directions: www.sierravalleybarnquilts.org
Information on barn quilt trails throughout the nation may be found on line at barnquiltinfo.com.
The Sierra County Arts Council received a grant (Local Impact Program Grant) from the California Arts Council (CAC) to support rural and under-served communities through grant opportunities for small arts organizations.
The Sierra County Board of Supervisors and local organizations such as the Mountain Star Quilters and the Sierraville School Recreation Association played an essential role in making this project a success. Dedicated community volunteers worked countless hours painting the barn quilts while other volunteers helped ranchers hang the finished quilts on local barns. The Swiss Star - Swiss Flag - Barn Quilt seen here in the painting stage is now hanging on the Griffin Barn. The Devine Barn in Calpine (photo below) received this beauty "Sierra Star" and can be seen from Hwy. 89.
To view all the barn quilts on the tour, get directions from: www.sierravalleybarnquilts.org
Take a drive through the beautiful Sierra Valley and ENJOY the TOUR!