The Mountaineer

By Becky Johnson

March 26, 2024

Have you noticed delightful painted quilt blocks adorning the facades of buildings and barns throughout Haywood County?

More than 60 quilt blocks can be found along the Haywood County Quilt Trail. Each quilt block pattern tells a story of mountain history and culture tied to the location where they appear.

The Haywood County Quilt Trail is part of the WNC Quilt Trail. With more than 200 quilt blocks, it is the largest collection of painted quilt blocks in the U.S. Each block is one of a kind and unique to its home.

In 2019, the Haywood County Arts Council adopted the WNC Quilt Trail program. The arts council has taken on the roll of curating quilt blocks for new locations across the region — from the design to hand painting the colorful squares.

Become a volunteer painter

The tradition of handcrafting exterior quilt blocks is now led by a dedicated group of volunteers in Waynesville, who meet weekly to hand paint these works of art. Vibrant quilt patterns are painted on pre-built wooden squares ranging from two feet to eight feet in size.

Take part in this lovely community by joining the painting sessions. Anyone aged 12 and up is welcome to come and paint. No experience is needed — volunteers are welcome to come have fun and many bring a friend.

The Haywood County Arts Council quilt block studio is housed at the Folkmoot Friendship Center in Waynesville. Volunteers, led by quilt trails coordinator Danna Bohnhoff, manage the entire quilt block creation process. The volunteers help outline and paint quilt blocks.

The studio at Folkmoot is typically open a few days a week and volunteers sign up for two hour painting shifts. Come and contribute to the history of the quilt trail in WNC. Through helping hand paint the quilt blocks, volunteers can meet new people and see quilt blocks in the making.

To get involved, visit or call 828-452-0593.

The Folkmoot Center is located at 112 Virginia Ave., Waynesville, provides studio space for the quilt block operation. Quilt block merchandise can be found in the Haywood Handmade Gallery on Main Street in downtown Waynesville.

Order a quilt block

The Haywood County Arts Council has three talented designers who work with clients to help them create a unique piece.

Quilt block designs can be traditional or more modern. Traditional block designs are modeled after historic blocks — whereas modern designs do not resemble traditional blocks, but must look like actual quilt blocks, something a quilter could actually piece and sew together.

Let your quilt block show your unique vision. The wooden quilt blocks can be made in various sizes, from two-foot squares to eight-foot squares. To get ideas of blocks on the trail, visit

HCAC is grateful for the community members who display exterior quilt blocks and for the designers and the volunteers who made these treasured pieces of Haywood history come to life.

Explore the Quilt Trail

The Haywood County Quilt Trail provides yet another reason to explore Haywood and enjoy the surrounding beauty.

The painted quilt blocks on the trail provide splashes of color along major roads and in the rural countryside. Cultural and heritage lovers inside and outside the county will experience the fun of locating blocks along the trails and learning the wonderful stories behind site locations and the quilt patterns represented on the blocks.

For a guide and map to the Haywood County Quilt Trails, visit