Saturday, August 17, 2019

Daredevils Block #3: Hazel's Star

Daredevils #3
Hazel's Star
Scroll down to see the two-page pattern for a 15" finished block.

#3 Hazel's Star by Becky Brown

#3 Hazel's Star was adapted from Star of the East, another original block designed for the newspaper column syndicated under the pen names of Laura Wheeler and Alice Brooks in the 1930s and '40s. Changed the corner triangles to curved shapes for Daredevils.

The Laura Wheeler drawing---scrappy

Star of the East by Dorry Emmer
She says you have to be a daredevil to use lime green.

#3 Star of the East by Denniele Bohannon
Denniele appliqued the circles in the corners as one piece after she joined all the blocks.

Quilt pattern collectors know little about the Laura Wheeler/Alice Brooks company which was formed as Needlecraft Service in 1932. The name was changed to Reader Mail in 1944. Quilt historian Wilene Smith determined that Nathan Kogan, Max Levine and Anne Borne formed the business, but we have few ideas as to who the actual pattern designers were.

Needlecraft's Tulip Quilt, last half of the 20th century

Needlecraft's patterns appeared in dozens of newspapers in the 1930s and still run today. The 1930s were the prime years for their quilt patterns. They also sold crochet, knitting, fashion and embroidery patterns. Fictional names like Carol Curtis or Alice Brooks gave a personal touch to the patterns that were neither a column nor an advertisement, but something called a "reader service feature." Readers sent a dime to a New York address at the Old Chelsea Station post office and received a full-size pattern in the mail.

Information on Laura Wheeler is from my recent book The Kansas City Star Quilts Sampler.

The Block

Daredevils pattern for a 15" block.
Cut paper templates. Add seams to the fabric.

How to print:
Create a word file or a new empty JPG file that is 8-1/2" x 11".
Click on the images above.
Right click on each and save to your file.
Print that file out 8-1/2" x 11". The small squares should measure 1".
Adjust the printed page size if necessary.

Hazel Ying Lee 1932
Hazel died flying for the WASPs during World War II:


  1. Another good read featuring the fascinating history of patterns published in the newspapers along with the write-up about Hazel Ying Lee. Surely different times as it seems this week's aviator Hazel is posing with a lit cigarette in her hand right next to a lot of flammable items. Thanks for all this Barbara.

  2. Wow, what a pioneer - woman, Chinese, and pilot, plus it looks like she was smoking a cigarette in that picture! Thank you so much for sharing this one. I never knew about her, and now I've read the link you provided and learned something wonderful.

  3. I'm having trouble printing out an accurate copy of both pages. It is printing it out too small. The first two blocks printed out just right on the same printer. Any suggestions?

  4. I'm with my sister who has had heart surgery, kinda hurts to think, do you have any instructions on my dare devil patterns? Your articles are fascinating!