I'm incredibly honored to be launching the Legacy Tour for this amazing new book, Brave New Quilts by Kathreen Ricketson. And I honestly say, every time I look at this book or even think about Kathreen, I get a bit choked up since she is no longer here to celebrate the arrival of this project with us.
I never had the opportunity to meet Kathreen in person. She lived in Australia and I'm in Ohio, and unfortunately our paths never crossed at Quilt Market or anywhere else among the thousands of miles between us. But, over the past few years we corresponded frequently via various online avenues and I'm so glad that we did. Kathreen was an amazing woman who was kind, supportive, encouraging, amazingly creative, and most definitely, incredibly inspiring.
Her beloved website, WhipUp, was one of the first that I came across when I began to make quilts for myself. I was instantly drawn to the site and Kathreen's sense of style and how seamlessly she combined her love of art and craft throughout every aspect of her life.
Brave New Quilts brings her love of art and craft to something tangible for us all, and is truly her legacy to those of us in the craft community. The book contains twelve projects that are inspired by twelve different 20th Century art movements, from Art Nouveau to Punk and Pop. I have to say, the art historian in me was absolutely giddy when I first heard about this book, and now that I have had a chance to spend some time with it in person, I'm even more excited. Kathreen includes a bit of information about all of the art movements that she includes in the book, which is great for those who may not be familiar with them, and she discusses how she drew inspiration from each of them for her quilts.
Kathreen captured the essence of each art historical movement in its corresponding quilt that she included in the book. I truly love them all, but my favorite is the cover quilt, Weave, which was inspired by the Bauhaus movement. Kathreen's use of color in this quilt is really quite stunning and it's no wonder that it was chosen for the cover of the book.
In this project, as in all of them throughout the book, Kathreen encourages the readers to design their own, rather than duplicating her design. I love that she included four additional colorways for each project as a starting point to show people just how differently the same quilt pattern can look just by changing the colors of the fabrics that are used in its construction.
Kathreen's instructions are well written and easy to follow. In addition to the twelve quilt patterns, Kathreen includes information on how to finish each project, which makes this book great for quilters of all skill levels. Brave New Quilts also contains little tidbits of design advice from Kathreen throughout it. I especially love her suggestions that are included throughout each project, like the one above in Weave.
Or this one, in the Seedpod quilt. While Kathreen inspires us to sew and work in our studios, she also encourages us to get outside and turn to nature as a source of inspiration for our design projects.
I miss Kathreen, and I always will. But, with Brave New Quilts we all get to keep a bit of her with us forever.
Please read more about the Legacy Tour of Brave New Quilts on the Stash Books blog, and be sure to follow along each stop as more of Kathreen's friends share their thoughts over the next couple of weeks.
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You can also keep track of the Legacy Tour by following the hashtag #LegacyTour on social media accounts such as Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
Rest in peace, sweet Kathreen. Thank you for sharing your love of art and craft with us while you were here, and for encouraging us all to be brave with our designs.