Friday, September 15, 2017

Trailing of the Sheep Quilt

Trailing of the Sheep is a unique festival in our valley. It celebrates the cultural heritage of the Basque sheepherders who helped to transform our mountain communities from mining centers into ranching centers. In fact, way back when, my grandfather used to herd sheep from Twin Falls to Stanley Basin, a stretch of 130 or more miles!

Held every October, The Trailing of the Sheep includes a host of events and activities. And our local guild - The 5 Bee Quilters' Guild - has begun a tradition of hosting a quilt show during the Trailing of the Sheep Weekend. In conjunction with showcasing member's quilts, the guild creates a Raffle Quilt.  A committee designs a wool quilt, the members piece the blocks, it's quilted, then bound, and finally ready for display as a Raffle Quilt which helps support the guild's charitable projects! The whole process takes about 7 months.

Here is this year's quilt, minus the binding:

I made one of the sheep blocks and did the long arm quilting on it. It sure was a fun quilt to work on!

Not wanting to quilt on top of the wool applique, I simply did some background fillers around each block and then quilted an outline pattern around the exterior dancing flowers. It makes the appliques really pop!

The outside border has a feather feeding off the blue sashing, with piano-key quilting extending to the edge of the quilt.

Notice how the Bees have even made their way into this quilt, to represent the 5 Bee Quilt Guild!

If you are ever in the Sun Valley, Idaho, area the first weekend in October, make plans to attend some of the festival's activities. The Sheep Dog Trials are a jaw-dropping experience in and of themselves! And watching hundreds of sheep trail down Ketchum's Main Street is such a nostalgic experience.

While you're at it, you can even pop in and see all the wonderful quilts our members have been working on over the past years.  You never know what inspiration you'll find.

Quilting with a smile,

Linking up with:
Finish Or Not Friday
Needle and Thread Thursday 
Show Off Saturday 
Linky Tuesday


  1. I love this quilt! Your use of color is outstanding. Thanks so much for sharing.

  2. Oh - how I wish I could be in Ketchum to see the sheep! We get cattle down main street and it just makes my heart happy. This quilt is amazing and your quilting just made it even more amazing! Lovely job.

  3. It's beautiful. I love the appliques and how the center basket and flowers extend to the blocks on either side. Wish I lived close enough to attend the festival.

  4. This quilt looks fantastic! What a fun event. I love it when communities come together to celebrate their heritage.

  5. That's a wonderful quilt, Barb! I hope you get a decent auction price for it! Please be sure to tell us the outcome of your auction. :)

  6. I love hearing about events from around the world and this sounds just wonderful. I love the quilt and very envious as I am useless at applique. I would love to attend one day, you never know when I can get back to the US. Thanks for sharing. Hugs, Susie xx

  7. Love Sun Valley and Ketchum! I'll have to remember to pay a visit there in October so I can see your quilt show and all the Trailing of the Sheep festivities! Thanks for linking up with Freemotion on the River so I could find another PNW quilter's blog to follow!

  8. What an awesome quilt! And so nice of you to do the machine quilting on it. I hope that it raises a lot of money for your guild.

  9. LOVE THIS POST!!!! This quilt does look fun...thanks for sharing your quilting with us. PS: I like your new profile pic. :)

  10. What a beautiful quilt Barb! I worked with wool for the first time and really enjoyed it. Thanks for sharing.

  11. The Trailing of the Sheep sounds like a wonderful event and a great chance for a community to celebrate! I absolutely adore this quilt design and I'm sure it will raise you a lot of funds. And I love the quilting you have done on it too - just perfect! Is there any chance this design could be released (as an extra guild fundraiser perhaps - I would sure love this pattern!!!!)

  12. Not even police dog demos can compare to sheep dog trials, such incredible respect and admiration have I for them, dogs and shepherds, a team. That sheep block is so cute! and your quilting divine. Hope you raised a whole bunch of money.

  13. What a beautiful quilt, and love reading about your festivity....would love to see the activities and quilt show, sounds great !


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