Wednesday, October 14, 2009

~ Kaffe Fassett ~

Last Mother's Day Dana, Angie and I celebrated the occasion with a weekend trip to Mackinac Island and a stay at The Grand Hotel.
A copy of this picture had been in my idea folder forever just because it had so many of my favorite things incorporated into it. Rose printed chintz, pitchers, blue and white, a green background and the fact that they were all beautifully combined, what's not to love. Who created this beauty never really even crossed my mind.

We were enjoying our getaway and a lot of laughs. The girls wanted to have spa treatments so I walked down with them to the spa at The Grand to arrange the appointments. It was then that I spotted a poster with my beloved picture on it announcing a seminar in the Grand Ballroom by the artist.

Off I went to sign up. Well, did I get an unexpected treat. The artist, Kaffe Fassett, is amazing. He is a multi-media artist that creates off the cuff art using paint, needlepoint, ceramic, stone, yarn and a number of other mediums.

His lecture had me spellbound. I couldn't wait to meet up with the girls and fill them in on my new discovery. After sharing the news we headed into the area they had set up to sell some of his wares.

A lovely lady in the yarn shop hooked us up with three skeins of yarn and three sets of knitting needles and a promise to meet us in the parlor after dinner and teach us how to knit. I used to knit a little and got the girls started a bit but by the time the knitting teachers showed up we were ripping up our teaching pieces and starting over the correct way.

The yarn that we were using is yarn created by Kaffe Fassett. It is a variegated color yarn that has flecks of other colors incorporated in it, kind of like a Harris Tweed type thing.

We sat in the parlor of The Grand knitting away that night until our fingers were sore. We knitted and talked about the amazing Kaffe Fassett. As it turned out the hotel was full of Fassett groupies that had assembled from all over the country to hear the Master speak. We just fell into the whole scene and loved every minute of it.

The thing that I took away from Fassett's lecture the most was his decree to just jump in and do it. Kind of like the Nike slogan on steroids. Since hearing him I have picked up my needlepoint projects that have languished in drawers and have started to just do it. They are not perfect but I'm doing it.

I still haven't finished anything and my knitting project with the beautiful yarn has been untouched since last May, but I am inspired.
Dana did finish her knitting project. If you go to her blog you can see pictures of the fruits of her labor snuggling around the sweet little neck of Nolan.
Here is some background from the jacket of Fassett's book "Glorious Interiors":
Kaffe Fassett is world renowned for his knitting and needlepoint. His work is included in many important textile collections and was exhibited in an extraordinarily successful retrospective in l988 at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. He was born in San Francisco and studied painting at the Museum of Fine Arts School in Boston before picking up his first pair of knitting needles on a train trip through rural England. He now lives in London, where he does design and commissioned needlework. He is the author of six books on knitting and needlepoint: Kaffe's Classics, Glorious Knits, Glorious Needlepoint, Kaffe Fasset at the V&A, Family Album and Glorious Inspiration.
Recently Kaffe has branched out into other areas of textile design. After having much success with his collections of upholstery fabrics and wallpapers, he has gone on to design five major tapestries for the Edinburg Tapestry Weavers in Scotland. These tapestries are now being exhibited along with his other work in a worldwide art tour. Kaffe has also begun experimenting with larger projects, such as set and costume design, and he has already completed the work for his first ballet, D'Ensemble, where he has flooded the set and costumes with the vibrant colors that are his hallmark. Kaffe also spends a great deal of time traveling the world, lecturing and giving workshops with his assistant and fellow designer, Brandon Mably.
The girls did not get to go to the lecture but as luck would have it, on Sunday morning as we were waiting for the carriage to take us down to the boat Mr. Fassett came strolling out onto the porch and was most gracious with his time. We spent that time taking in his awsome willingness to share of himself and his talents. He was wearing a scarf made out of the very same wool that we had tucked in our bags in hope of one day completing. Kaffe Fassett is a very dear man.


  1. Lucky you! That sounds amazing! I know him through his needlepoint (I used to be very into a long time ago).


  2. That chair is amazing.

  3. These pictures are gorgeous...the colors are amazing...I could look at them forever!!! What a fun time you must have had...meeting this amazing artist!!!


  4. This is like eye candy, brain candy and creative candy all at once, yumalicious is an understatement.

    TQM (the Queen Mother, hee-hee-hee) is a longtime fan of his from way back when, with each and every book, and all manner of goodies. We're a little late to the party, really only the last 6 or 7 years, but way we lost in time we make up for with enthusiasm! We even made TQM a set of bright and springy napkins from one of the incredible pieces of fabric they create, she loves them because they are reversible so she has extra Fasset fabric to love!

    You just have the best posts, honestly, we adore popping in to visit!

  5. Oh my gosh! I cannot believe you got to meet him!!! His stuff is amazing! His knitted items are so unique! What an experience!!!

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