After a cup of Earl Grey and a gooey chocolate brownie to recover from the cultural whirlwind of the Bowie exhibition, my friend and I went across town to the Fashion and Textile Museum, to an exhibition of Kaffe Fassett's work.
Kaffe Fassett is an American artist and textile designer who has lived in London since the 60's. He started out as a painter, but after a trip to Scotland was inspired by the colours and textures of the yarns he saw in a local shop and persuaded a fellow train passenger to teach him to knit on the journey home. This was the result:
Not bad for a first attempt, eh!
His use of colour is fabulous, matching tones and textures perfectly.
This is a quilt made from men's shirts:
We so often see heirloom quilts that are feminine, what a fabulous keepsake to make for a son!
This quilt blew me away:
Again, the tones are perfect. But what struck me most with this was how the circular quilting on top of the hexagonal patchwork changed the look of the quilt.
Here you can see how his needlepoint designs have been influenced by blue china:
and by the natural world:
Kaffe Fassett - A Life in Colour runs until 29th of June. As well as the knitting, quilting and needlepoint mentioned above, there are also examples of his printed fabric designs (and if Cath Kidston wasn't heavily influenced by this guy then I'll eat my embroidery hoop!) and documentary footage of him discussing his work and sources of inspiration.
If you love any kind of stitching, I can guarantee you will come away from this exhibition with a head full of ideas, and I recommend you do like Kaffe and take some yarn for the train ride home!