by Heidi Emmett
I am the other half of the Trunk Show we gave to the Pine Tree Quilt Guild in Grass Valley, CA on Feb. 2nd. I opened a “full service” (meaning, everything from sewing machines, fashion fabrics, home dec., quilting fabrics, etc.) fabric store in Grass Valley in January of 1983. Kaffe’s first book, Glorious Color came on the scene in 1985. I used it for inspiration at the store for all sorts of projects. In it were the most beautiful knitted garments I had ever seen. The richness, and intricacies of the patterns intrigued me. Below is a picture of “Jack’s Back Stripe.”
I began using Kaffe’s books as jumping off points for my garments and quilted garments that I made as samples at my fabric store. Kaffe was exploring needlepoint too and what soon followed was a huge explosion into the quilting world and quilting fabric. Let’s enjoy a few more of his beautiful knitted garments and design ideas. These are from his “Circles” collection.
In 2001, Kaffe partnered with the company, Peruvian Connection. He felt they had the same vision that he had with his depth of color and luminous yarn and pattern choices. Look them up. Sign up for their catalogs. There aren’t as many Kaffe sweaters available today as in past years, BUT, you can find them for sale as I did on Ebay. Below, is a sweater I purchased from the Kaffe’s men’s collection (my husband would never wear this, oh too bad for him, I never bought for him in the first place. Don’t tell him that, ha, ha.)
Uhhh, yes, here are a few more Kaffe sweaters. All right, all right, I consider them pieces of Art (even Peruvian Connection calls them that). They are “investment” pieces. Kaffe has been around for decades but his designs are as fresh and new as ever. They are timeless. If you are in the San Jose’ area anytime from March 12-June 28th, you must visit the San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles.Look them up as a wonderful Kaffe collection is coming their way.
While Christine mainly uses her Kaffe fabrics for her quilts, I work in the quilted garment area. I also tend to be a Kaffe Fassett purist. I love his prints the best, and his Shot cottons (his version of a solid, where the warp and weft threads are different colors) and his Indian Stripes (because they are made in India to Kaffe’s specifications). Below is my Tuffet pincushion that I just made in Jill Schlegeter’s class. And the center button I got from Sandra Bruce (her polymer collection).
And my Whisper Blouse pattern made using all Kaffe Indian stripes. I have just started gathering Kaffe prints and stripes for a new version of my “Off the Grid Vest”: my workshop for our Artistic Alchemy Retreat in September. You can create your own piece of Art to Wear in my workshop.
Enjoy this weekend. And take some time to pull out of your stash, some Kaffe fabric and see what you can create! Hugs, Heidi