Every Kate Graves quilt is made entirely by hand. Fabrics come from a variety of sources and have been collected
over 20 years, allowing for an entirely unique configuration for each quilt that can never be exactly reproduced.
Some the fabrics in my collection have come to me as gifts from friends and family, sometimes for use in their own
custom quilts. Using the principle of adaptive re-use, a percentage has been culled from second hand stores, often
from Hawaiian shirts or batik skirts with intricate prints no longer available at conventional fabric stores.
All fabrics are machine washed three times to assure shrinkage and color fastness prior to being cut up for use.
My current aesthetic is to only use 100% cotton of top quality, because I do intend for these quits to sustain daily use.
Each is machine washable (cold water's best) and can be tossed in the dryer (delicate setting helps to keep the colors
vibrant). They make especially good swaddling for children, as they are made with organic cotton or bamboo fiber
batting, thus unsullied by the flame retardant and synthetic materials that conventional crib gear comes saturated with.
Over time I have evolved a design aesthetic which is both simple and allows for incredible variety. Using freezer paper
cut into 5" squares, I 'frame' each square prior to cutting, allowing me to control the level of fabric detail on the most
basic level. As has been noted, I am not afraid of color- though careful consideration goes into each arrangement.
Once the layout has been established, I machine stitch the squares together, and similarly piece a backing fabric unique
to each quilt. I roll both onto the frame of my 12' Mega quilter, laminating them together with the batting by passing
back and forth with a sewing machine which glides along, guided by a laser pointer which follows the stitching pattern
I've drawn out. The result is not unlike an industrial packing blanket used by movers- this method allows an individual
signature with each pass of the machine, and yields an incredibly durable finished piece.
The edges of the quilt need to be tucked in and finished, so a border of doubled over fabric in a contrasting color
completes the quilt. This is hand-stitched to surround the entire perimeter. This level of care in assembly allows the
resultant quilt to be used without fear, and enjoyed on a daily basis. I believe my work is imbued with special powers
to grant the users a feeling of warmth and comfort that allows for deeper sleep and more colorful, vibrant dreams.