Warm congratulations to Kaffe Fassett this month! He’s been awarded an MBE in recognition of his services to the crafts of knitting and needlework this month, and it couldn’t be more deserved.
According to the Kaffe Fassett Studio Summer 2018 newsletter, Kaffe was awarded an honorary Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE), by Her Majesty The Queen. He was presented with his MBE Honours medal by Michael Ellis, the Minister for Arts, Tourism and Heritage on 6th September. Exciting stuff!
Kaffe’s having a busy year! We were lucky enough to visit his joint exhibition with Candace Behouth A Celebration of Flowers at the Victoria Art Gallery in Bath back in August, and he’s just left the UK to embark on his Fall Tour of the USA. He’s also recently published a new book: Kaffe Fassett’s Quilts in America – order your signed copy today!
Kaffe Fassett tops our list of iconic quilters when it comes to how to use colour to make quilts that wow. We featured this collection of his quilts in our very first issue in our special Souvenir Supplement, so we thought we’d share them with you now to give your day a colour boost and inspire you the next time you’re picking a colour palette for a new quilt project! Remember you can keep up to date with all the latest Kaffe news over on his website kaffefassett.com
Main photograph © Tony Bartholomew for The Quilter’s Guild
Quilt photography (above) © Kaffe Fassett
Our favourite Kaffe quilts
We’re looking back through the Today’s Quilter archive at some of our favourite designs from his recent work. As well as being famed as a contemporary colour-addict, his designs are interwoven with a celebration of craft heritage, and his Ancestral Quilts exhibition at The Quilt Museum and Gallery in York last year was inspired by quilts from the The Quilters’ Guild Collection. Kaffe’s book, Kaffe Fassett’s Heritage Quilts, features 20 quilt designs created by him and his team, inspired by the treasures in the Collection. He told us about a few of his favourites in our souvenir magazine…
Rustic Checkerboard medallion
Inspired by the Sidmouth Quilt 1820-1840
“I love boldness and it was fun to do a version of the original that was slightly less black and white and with sunny yellows, creams and pinks in my palette. I like the way the background colours of the squares-on-point row goes diagonally instead of straight across the square.”
Inspired by the Hearts and Crosses Coverlet 1875-1900
“We first made a version of this quilt in a mossy green palette and called it Mossy Radiation. It featured in our book, Quilt Road. Re-examining it for this new version, I’m really moved by the dark and light rhythm of the bold stripes of print, and also how some large-scale florals are tossed into the mix.”
Candy zigzag ribbon
Inspired by the Mrs Fitz-Herbert Top 1800-1850
“With quite simple means, a delightful complexity of stripes and zigzags is created in the original. In my design, I have replaced the little pointed borders with print and I have also used a brighter palette to emulate the silky sheen of the original quilt.”
Sunshine herringbone stripes
Inspired by the Chevron Strippy 1880-1900
“My version is much calmer by comparison with the original… In part, this was to make something that is easy to give instructions for and partly because I fell in love with a happy string palette of primroses and soft leafy greens.”
If you want to read more about Kaffe’s life in colour, you can still get your hands on issue 1 of Today’s Quilter, including our Kaffe Fassett: Celebrating 50 years in textiles souvenir magazine, by downloading it straight to your phone or tablet, using our Today’s Quilter app for Apple Newstand. And you can see more of his heritage designs in the book Kaffe Fassett’s Heritage Quilts.
Kaffe awarded honorary Doctorate (July 2016)
Congratulations to one of our nation’s best-loved textile artists, Kaffe Fassett, who is being awarded an honorary Doctorate from the University of Huddersfield this week. No-one captures colour in textiles quite like Kaffe. In his forward to our special souvenir magazine about his work last year, he spoke to us about how quilting is a world in which “a little encouragement really gets people using colour with abandon,” and this philosophy has inspired us to rethink how we use colour for maximum impact in many a quilt project since. Congratulations Kaffe on your doctorate, and here’s to many more decades of colour-popping magic in all that you make!