Brave New Quilts


The craft world was shaken when Kathreen Ricketson died tragically in May. Though I never met Kathreen in person, we had worked together on several projects and I was a longtime follower of her blog Whip Up, where she shared craft and sewing projects along with thought-provoking posts about creativity and life in general.

Kathreen was unflinching in her pursuit of creativity and gave her readers an honest depiction of a real life. She was a hard worker, balancing a busy family life with books, blogging, and exciting new projects like her family magazine, Action Pack. I admired her dedication and integrity. Her final book, Brave New Quilts, reflects so much of her personality and it feels like a perfect expression of her warm, yet modern aesthetic.


In Brave New Quilts, Kathreen takes us on a journey through artistic styles of the 20th century, using Pop Art, Bauhaus, Midcentury Modern, and other movements as inspiration for her quilts. She introduces the design principles of space, proportion, pattern and texture, line and shape, balance and symmetry, and color. After all, these same design principles can just as easily be applied to quilt-making as they can to fine art. The book is sprinkled with her charming sketches as you can see below, and filled with ideas for finding inspiration.


The twelve projects in the book can be re-created just as they are seen in the book, but she also encourages you to take a creative leap and make the designs your own. For each quilt, she sketches out other color options so you can see the possibilities. Whether you are a beginning or advanced quilter, there’s something for everyone to take from this book.

Brave New Quilts is a beautiful and poignant book, a fitting tribute to Kathreen’s creative life. Follow along on the Legacy tour:

Tuesday 10/1  Heather Jones

Wedneday 10/2  Kristin Link

Thursday 10/3  Maya Donenfeld

Friday 10/4  Alexandra Smith

Monday 10/7  Sonya Philip

Wedneday 10/9  Andrea Jenkins

Thursday 10/10  Shannon Cook

Friday 10/11  Mimi Kirchner

Monday 10/14  Cheryl Arkison


2 Replies to “Brave New Quilts”

  1. Reading this really warmed my heart. Thank you for inviting us to follow this lovely tribute.
    I don’t own this book but I will , and I hope this will encourage others who don’t to also purchase it in our way of showing a tribute amongst our book of inspiration.
    Thank you

  2. I just got this book over the weekend. Reading her descriptions and her references to her children, their thoughts and likes of the quilts in this book made my heart ache. I had to put it down more than once just to contemplate. It is a great book, not just for the quilts and ideas but for the legacy she left behind.

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