Thursday, January 28, 2010

Kansas City Star Patterns Online

Thirties quilts have a signature look, not only in the clear, cheerful colors but also in the designs. They have a modern look with simplified shapes, yet complex repeats. Many of those unique patterns were published in the Kansas City Star, like the "Dogwood Blossom" below, a combination of spiky fans and checkerboard blocks.

Dogwood Blossom, published in the Star February, 1934

The Star published over a thousand quilt patterns from 1928 to 1961.

Sunbonnet Sue, designed by Eveline Foland, published in the Star 1930.

You can get Star patterns online by subscribing to My Star Collection. For a $20 annual fee you can download a Kansas City Star quilt pattern once a week for a year---52 patterns.  Each pattern has been redrafted to eliminate inaccuracies in the originals and includes rotary-cutting instructions. You can also buy extras for $2 each.

You have access to a database of sketches of all the Star patterns, a feature I like because if I am dating a quilt like the Sunbonnet Sue quilt above it helps to know that the pattern was published August 9, 1930. The quilt couldn’t have been made before then.

For more information, click here:

Here are two more Kansas City Star designs.

"The Cotton Boll Quilt" published February 12, 1941

"Memory Bouquet" designed by Eveline Foland, published in 1930


  1. Have to admit my favorite designer is Nancy Cabot.

  2. I will have to go an take a look - this is one on of my favorite periods and one of my favorite looks.

  3. Wonderful Post. I love these quilts and history of the patterns. I am history buff and am considering studying to be a quilt appraiser. Thanks so much

  4. I always try to date quilts I see in the thrifts by the fabrics used, but not knowledgeable enough, to really tell, just a guess. Reading your blog is teaching me more about antique quilts, love learning about them.


  5. An elderly member of my quilt guild gave me a very large box of quilting ephemera last year. A majority of the clippings were from the Kansas City Star. I love going through them!

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  7. Has anyone seen the additional patterns for Eveline Foland's Memory Bouquet published in the Detroit News?

  8. Barbara, do you know whether the original Kansas City Star pattern templates included seam allowances or not? I found a block from 1930 online that someone scanned in from an old newspaper, "Rose Dream." It says it's for a 13" finished block and tells you to "allow for seams." Does "allow for seams" mean "add seam allowances?" It's not obvious because the block has curved piecing and when I overlay the templates the edges don't meet up exactly, and the scanned image is not printing out actual size. I want to resize the block to 6" so I can mix it in with Farmer's Wife blocks.

  9. I have a lot of the original paper copies. I am working on a flower quilt and would love to show off my interpretation of the 1932 patterns. Is there a site one can post photos too?

  10. Barbara i have an embroidered...surface...quilt top that was a 1929 wedding gift..it is eveline foland flowers without the pots..how can this be if the patterns werent published until the 1930s..i am 100 percent sure of this 1929 date...is it possable these eveline foland patterns were published earlier and we just didnt know it.