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Inspiration

Kaffe Fassett’s New Quilting Book is All-American

Renowned artist's book due out in August 2018 was inspired by American-made vintage quilts.

Apr 07, 2018
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The cover and a quilt from Quilts in America. Image courtesy of the Taunton Press. Photo: Debbie Patterson.

Coming in August 2018 is Kaffe Fassett’s newest book, Quilts in America. The 20th in his Patchwork and Quilting series, the book contains 20 designs inspired by 18 vintage quilts in the American Museum in Britain, in Bath.

Kaffe takes traditional American quilt blocks and patterns, such as Log Cabin, Starburst, and Tumbling Blocks and reinvigorates them with his widely popular aesthetic. Each pattern includes instructions, piecing diagrams, and step-by-step photos, as well as fabric recommendations. This book is a return to Kaffe’s roots: Though he has been settled in England for many years, he was born in San Francisco.

Photographed in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, Quilts in America showcases beautiful landscapes and displays Kaffe’s quilts in an environment that reflects the classic image of Colonial America, where many of the original quilt designs originated.

A quilt from Kaffe Fassett’s new book. Photo: Debbie Patterson.

Since the first book in Kaffe Fassett’s successful Patchwork and Quilting series was published, the author has explored quilting techniques and designs from around the world. Past books include Quilts in Ireland, Quilts in Sweden, Country Garden Quilts, and Quilt Romance, among others. Each book includes patterns with detailed instructions for quilt projects.

Kaffe is known for his use of color, even receiving the Turner Medal from Great Britain’s Color Group, which celebrates Britain’s greatest colorist. He designs for the Free Spirit line of fabrics, which he frequently uses in his quilting. The vibrant colors and intriguing patterns are sure to enhance any quilting project.

Another project from Quilts in America. Photo: Debbie Patterson.

His design skill and attention to detail were admired from his first knitted creation, a garment that was given a full-page spread in Vogue Knitting.

He went on to design knitwear for Barbara Streisand, Lauren Bacall, and H.R.H. Princess Michael of Kent, among other public figures. Kaffe considers textile arts to be instinctual rather than cerebral, describing knitting as “like painting.” His designs reflect that, taking a different look at techniques and colors. The octogenarian has dedicated the past 50 years to the pursuit of excellence in knitting, needlepoint, and patchwork.

 

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