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Kaffemania

Dear Ann,
Going through my Lifetime List of Crushes, certain names stand out. Davy Jones, Bobby Sherman, Maybe Donny Osmond For 5 Minutes (Hey I Was 13), John Denver, Jackson Browne, Elvis Costello, Kenneth Branagh, Bill Clinton….(The path was not always upward, but it was always exciting.) Only rarely have I been granted the opportunity to approach The Adored One Du Jour, to say something stupid that I will forever regret at a moment I will always cherish. Quel thrill.
On Thursday, I am hoping to get the chance to meet one of my most enduring hot pashes. Kaffe Fassett. Yes. Oh yes!
kaffeandsirthomas.jpg
Here is my (understated and dignified) personal shrine to Kaffe. (Who can look at Sir Thomas More’s crimson sleeves without thinking of Kaffe? I know I can’t.) While I adore Kaffe, I realize that he is just a man. He puts on his 32-color cardigans one arm at a time. I know that.
Everyone is invited to New York to hear Kaffe speak this coming Thursday evening, November 1, at 6 p.m. at the Fashion Institute of Technology’s Haft Auditorium at 7th Avenue and 27th Street. Admission is free, no reservations required (although you might want to come a little before 6 to get unobstructed views of Kaffe). You don’t have to wear a Kaffe sweater, or even wave a Kaffe swatch. Just be there! If you see me, say hi. If I am unable to respond immediately due to my heightened emotional state, please understand.
Love,
Kay
P.S. Kaffe Sez:
kaffe1.jpg
a. “Get your colour on!”
b. “Take me to your leader.”
c. “Never have your picture taken unless you are standing in front of something as pretty as you are.”
d. “This is the dawning of the Age of Aquarius.”
e. “Oh behave!”

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62 Comments

62 Comments

  1. I had the privilege of hearing Kaffe (and talking to him!) a few months ago. Can you believe he made it to Utah?! You’re in for a treat.

  2. He’s also going to Knitty City on Tuesday, and I hope to make it there then. Definately a must-see.

  3. To me, those colors are a headache waiting to happen. Ach. Enjoy!!!

  4. You lucky thing! I’ve just bought his latest knitting book and was instantly transported back to those heady early Rowan days… oh the joy of picking out 23 colours for a scarf…but it’s only 2 colours per row, anybody can do it…

  5. it’s your first time?? you WILL be bowled over- he does good lecture. and he’s so polite that he listened to me go on and on about the china clouds pattern or something and just smiled. then i asked if i could be his assistant which got me a tiny bit of the evil eye from Brandon. beware! ENJOY!

  6. I wish he had a podcast! A video podcast even better! I do love the things he does!!! Can’t wait to hear about it you lucky girl!

  7. Squee! If you leave out Elvis Costello, we are sisters-in-crush. Who can forget Bobby Sherman warbling “In Seattle” on his TV series, the name of which I forgot?
    Oh, but Kaffe! My husband’s ex-wife sat next to him on an cross-atlantic flight and said (not to me, she doesn’t exactly talk to ME) that he was a lovely airplane companion. Sigh.

  8. “Mystic crystal revelation.”
    It’s just gotta be. HAVE FUN!!!

  9. A! He would say A! Throw more color at it!!!!!!!!! Please write down everything he says.

  10. Call me a heretic, but I look at Sir Thomas More’s sleeves and think about… Sir Thomas More’s sleeves, and the rich yummy velvet (and how I’d kill for some..). But then, I was an historical costume geek before I was a knitting geek.
    Have a blast!

  11. Ooh- spooky. I had a similar crush list. But substitute David Cassidy for Donny Osmond and Neil Young for Elvis Costello.
    A or E
    Enjoy!

  12. Oh my word, he looks like the patron saint of color wheels in that photo. Brilliant.

  13. My first crush was Davy Jones!
    Although, it was sobering to realize that the actual man was 60 or so when I developed my crush…my being on the youngish side, and having started listening and watching the Monkees reruns…

  14. of course, he would say A. “get your colour on!!” :o)ek.

  15. You rock Girl. We had the same crushes except for, way up on my list, Ringo. Kaffe is actually coming to NC where I hope to get a peak as well. Loved the billboard!

  16. even though you didn’t solicit additional Kaffe Sez…
    F. Even my aura is more fabulous than yours!
    Sigh, wish I lived there so I could go. Or even just lived within a days drive of there!

  17. I hope you’ll be wearing more than just a Kaffe swatch in this chilly weather. Oh, behave!

  18. I am going to sound like a biggish ignoramus here, but what the heck…
    how do you pronounce his name?
    I can ask you, because I know (hope) you will enjoy answering ANY question about KF, because you sound like kind of a fan :)

  19. When he was in San Diego last, my wife and I had dinner with him and Brandon; they are delightful people. My wife of course has a big crush on the man, and I don’t blame her a bit.
    Kaffe has a wider art background than textiles. His family has a restaurant/store called Nepenthe on the Pacific Coast Highway near Big Sur. It’s a delightful place; we’ve been there a few times. In the shop there are a couple of oil paintings Kaffe did some years ago that are also impressive. I am tempted each time we go.
    Enjoy the talk.

  20. I’m wearing my newly finished Kaffe/Regia socks right now!

  21. Sorry to brust your bubble Martha – Perry Como sang “In Seattle” – we had the record and I played it forever. Bobby Sherman was in the TV show Here Comes the Brides, but his big hits were “Easy Come Easy Go” and “Julie Do you Love me”

  22. Sorry to brust your bubble Martha – Perry Como sang “In Seattle” – we had the record and I played it forever. Bobby Sherman was in the TV show Here Comes the Brides, but his big hits were “Easy Come Easy Go” and “Julie Do you Love me”

  23. Oh well. I’ll be in New York ten days too late. I guess I’ll just dust off my *priceless* videotapes of Gorgeous Color”, a TV profile of Kaffe Fassett made by Channel 4 and obtained after the longest ebay hunt ever. But so worth keeping my ancient VCR for…

  24. Here’s what Wikipedia has to say on the burning question of the Theme Song to Here Come the Brides:
    The theme song “Seattle” was written by Hugo Montenegro, Jack Keller and Ernie Sheldon. Both Perry Como and Bobby Sherman, had minor hits on the Billboard Hot 100 singles charts in 1969 with slightly different variations of the song. At some point during the second half of the first season, the theme was changed from a rousing instrumental score to a version with lyrics sung by The New Establishment with backing conducted by Montenegro. The vocal track was eventually removed. When the series went into syndication, the episodes with the vocal theme were replaced with the instrumental version for uniformity.
    [end of quote]
    Can I just say that I REMEMBER the vocal track? Which makes me ultra old.
    xox Kay

  25. I think my mental version is Perry Como …but boy, oh boy, do I remember Bobby Sherman. I had one of his albums and played it endlessly…all the while dreaming over his pictures on the album cover…He may not be a Kaffe…but he sure know how to make a young girl’s heart flutter!!

  26. I think my mental version is Perry Como …but boy, oh boy, do I remember Bobby Sherman. I had one of his albums and played it endlessly…all the while dreaming over his pictures on the album cover…He may not be a Kaffe…but he sure knew how to make a young girl’s heart flutter!!

  27. I met Kaffe when I was still mostly a scarf knitter, about 8 years ago. I walked into Weaving Works in Seattle and saw him sitting all alone knitting quietly. He must have been early for his engagement.
    I had no idea who he was but I remember thinking, what a handsome, older gentlemen AND he’s knitting! I think I lamely complimented him on the colors of his knitting… and forgot about it, until I saw him on the cover of a book and I’ve been embarrassed/overjoyed about it ever since.

  28. Wave some fancy-colored yarn at Kaffe for me, please. My knitting dreams are all about color so he is My Guru. Kaffe Fassett = rhymes with *safe aset* according to some other blog I read.

  29. That picture reminds me of some of the postcards I’ve seen of 19th century Hindu “saints”. [I married into a family of born-again Hindus, pun intended.]

  30. “wave a Kaffe swatch”. You slay me. I’m picturing an auditorium of people swaying with swatches instead of lighters.

  31. I. Am. So. Jealous. The only NorCal stop he’s making on this tour is a couple of *painting* workshops in Monterey.

  32. I had almost the same list, except scratch Bill Clinton and replace him with Paul Gross!

  33. I was SO going to marry Bobby Sherman. AND, *whispering quietly and looking to the left.. so, that others will think that I’m glancing at a fly, or something* I just recently bought the dvd: Here Come the Bridges..
    But, I’ve been afraid to watch it.. in case my pre-teen eyes and emotions betrayed me and he wasn’t ‘all that!’
    Word of advice.. try not to call his dog STUPID in front of him.. *This is assuming that he’d have his dog or cat with him.. if not, well, then.. I guess don’t call him or any of his family members ‘stupid.’ You know know what I mean.. don’t stick your FOOT IN YOUR MOUTH! :D
    (yes, I did that once by accident.. honest- I’m not a mean person who calls ‘dogs’ stupid. :D
    .. AND, it was about a famous person’s dog who was behind me.. and I didn’t know it. Ok, the famous person was behind me- the dog was in front of me.. geez.. those dangling modifers!) There was an audible gasp by all those present.

  34. That would be: HERE COME THE BRIDES.. not HERE COME THE BRIDGES..
    Ok, maybe.. I have Bobby Sherman mixed up w/ someone else?
    Wasn’t the father on My 3 SONS have something to do w/ building bridges? Humm.. No, it’s not him.. he was too old for me to have a crush on him.

  35. Maaaaaaaan. I am so jealous.
    If you get a chance let him know that I stuck out 18 years making the Chinese Rose coat from Glorious Knitting — and it is the most beautiful thing I’ve ever made. ( http://thingssoolikes.blogspot.com/2007/04/kaffee-fasset-chinese-rose-coat-18.html )
    Maaaaaaan. Did I mention I’m jealous?

  36. love comes beats on drums and the people sing.
    anything. any song they’ll do.
    I love love love Bobby Sherman.
    Oh, and I got a kaffe fassett knitting book for my birthday.
    Wish I could hear him speak!!!!!!

  37. Oh oh, I’ll be there then! Must go! (And now I have to rethink my packing… SHould I bring the very lovely yet very warm Lopi Fake Fassett??)

  38. Hi ya – I too saw Kaffe speak in Cambridge uk years ago – probably the first time round- i was not a knitter then – it was SCAREY!! I had not and have not since seen so many hand knits in one hall! – THEY ALL WERE WEARING FASSETT- I remember him saying that when they wrote out his patterns in books, it took ages to do,however they did it!! By the way – I reckon it’s reply C

  39. are you already plotting what you are going to wear and what you will say? and how your first sentence will so completely slay him that he will forever be in your thrall? and how you will become fast friends and always look back on this night as the beginning??

  40. My first record album EVER was Bobby Sherman – the one with multi-colored headshots that opened up into a rainbow of Bobby goodness. I would lie between the two speakers of our portable record player and blast the music, thinking that maybe he’d drive by, hear his music and be suddenly drawn to my house on Scenic View Drive (I lived on a cul-de-sac on top of a hill in Pittsburgh, mind you). I did the same thing with the Carpenters, wanting to be Karen’s best friend. Sigh. I was very happy in my own little world! :o)

  41. We have very similar taste in crushes. I would only add Mikhail Baryshnikov and Alan Rickman. And, yes, I had my brief crush on John Denver too.
    Have fun at Kaffe. If I were in NYC, I’d go tremble too.

  42. BOBBY SHERMAN!!!!!!!!!!! OMG!

  43. Kaffee is a real charmer!
    hope you do get to talk to him, he has all sorts of stories! and he loves when he sees his patterns around, he is just a little tiny bit vain (but not in an annoying way at all).
    have fun!

  44. Am I the only Republican that reads this blog? And the only David Cassidy fan?

  45. I too love Kaffe. I had a chance to meet him a few years ago when he came to the knitting shop I frequented in McLean, VA. I have a picture of me him and the Celtic Coat! Then I saw him at Stitches a couple weeks and dutifully bought his book for signing. I guess he was having an off night. I tried talking to him and told him of the Kaffe projects I had done and tried not to mind that I just spent 35$ for a book with little new in it and poor quality binding. But he wouldn’t even look up to say hello. I was disappointed.

  46. OMG, I am so there!
    My guess is D.

  47. Kafee has never done a thing for me, although letting intarsia ends hang rather than putting them into bobbins was a piece of knitting advice much more useful than a crush. The quilt background is a great picture though.
    I never went for Davy Jones but I had one on Bobby Sherman all right. Did you leave out David Byrne by accident? I wanted to be David Byrne when I was about 19 – this was before there were women rock diva/impressarios – who wanted to be Madonna? Then when somewhat older I had a huge crush on Robert Rubin, Clinton’s finance guy. bluest eyes in the world.

  48. love me some kaffe TOO!!!!

  49. I totally agree with the Hindu aura assessment. There is something vaguely far Eastern about the man’s color choices.
    Speaking of My Three Sons – what about Robbie, the eldest son? That nice floppy blond hair with just a *touch* of wave, those long eyelashes, the sensuous mouth…enough to make a person put down their needles…

  50. I’ll be seeing Kaffe Fassett tonight! YAY! I tend to knit in dark, drab colors–so, I’m afraid-very afraid!

  51. hope this does not make you mad with jealousy but in, oh, ten days time I’m spending the weekend with Kaffe (and about twenty others)!
    Thank you Rowan.

  52. Kay, I not only *remember* the lyrics…I could sing them right now, with maybe a couple of hmmm-mmm-mmm bits stuck in here and there.
    but please won’t someone have pity on the ignorant? tell me how to pronounce the man’s name?

  53. Dear Quinn,
    “Kaffe” rhymes with “safe”.
    I pronounced it “Kaffy” (rhyming with “taffy”) for years before somebody clued me in. How could one be expected to know? It’s like Ralph Fiennes. (You know about him, don’t you? He also rhymes with “safe”.) At least Kaffe gives you fair warning that it’s not a conventional English name!
    Kay

  54. Add David Cassidy and Speed Racer (yes, I know he was a cartoon) and that list could be mine. Except for maybe not John Denver. Have a great time!

  55. Ha – Kaffemania – we’ve all got it!
    I went to a Kaffe lecture many years ago in London, long before he was King Quilt – he was a mere Knitting god then. It was fascinating, none more so than when I asked The Question. That would be the one they probably dread, and I just had to be the one to raise my fevered little hand and ask the Guru that day. It was the one about whether he actually knitted any of the designs himself or if he was all about the design. I just wanted to know, it wasn’t a judgemental thing for me either way. His answer said it all – it’s the design (and the colour of course) for him.
    Well. There was an audible collective gasp from the Kaffe-clad audience and a very visible raising of protective hackles amongst the Kaffe entourage – and I think Brandon may have put the evil eye on me. Though I didn’t get the impression that the man himself was that bothered. The reaction was absolutely fascinating, and revealed more about the world of Kaffe than I think they would have liked. But really, why is it a problem? More designs for us seems like a great thing to me, and his ideas are always inspirational.
    So anyway, only ask The Question if you’re brave enough – someone else is bound to I’m sure. Either way you’re bound to come away totally inspired. Have fun!

  56. I passed by Kaffe at Stitched East last year (he was just sitting there by himself!) and man oh man, is he a silver fox. Kaffe, you can strand my knitting anytime.

  57. Every time we are in London, I am on Kaffe alert, looking for him in places I think he might be (stupid, I know). When we were in Liberty, they just go some of his new fabrics in and one of the ladies was admiring it. The woman helping her said, “Oh, he is a nice man. He was in yesterday to look at the bolts.” UGH!
    My daughter has a job interview Thursday evening, otherwise I would be front and center, drooling all over him. Such a cutie!

  58. no, what Kaffe is really saying (singing?) is:
    “I look handsome, I look smart, I am a walking work of art. such a dazzling coat of many colors…” (I won’t list the colors, though. you’ll thank me, I’m sure.)
    (and if you’ve seen it live/on dvd, then you get the 5 min Donny crush looped into it too.)
    lucky you!

  59. forget kaffe:: i am trying to find the common thread to all of kay’s hot pashes. (obviously have way too much time/headspace to waste) good night ann & kay! and thank you for the elvis costello vid::

  60. kaffe says, “Tell me honestly: do you think this shirt goes with this quilt? I don’t know, can you mix vertical stripes with spiraling diamonds?
    just imagine how colorful the love child of Kaffe Fasset and Lucy Neatby would be– or would said child want only grey and beige? ;)

  61. Ohhh.. I just had to share.. when I was in HS.. the girls (of course, back then.. it was only girls) in the Home Ec class got to go to Oklahoma City to a convention of some sort and that night we got to see: DAVID CASSIDY !!!!
    YES, can you hear the squeals of about 75 girls from small town America.. getting to see DAVID CASSIDY in concert?
    I do remember our poor Home Ec teacher having a headache and not allowing ANYONE to speak on the bus ride home.. yes, for 2 1/2 hours.. but, we didn’t care.. we were all dreaming that he was SINGING TO US and only to US!! :D

  62. hey kay it is in all the ingredients that you get flavor. there is one secret to the slow cooker that one should never overlook and…that is wine and garlic as well as bay leaves and fresh herbs. soo sorry to read that your mohair in motion went so wrong. I think that is not so much the color as the choice of pattern. I think that the stripe thing is where it goes wrong. I also think that if you take out the white you will find the other may not be the hojo experience that you were getting into. alpca is the order of my day. I have had my alpaca breeder get more business for our knitting group. We are so excited. the yarn will be available via skipjack alpaca in easton maryland. it is like being around 100 pounds of good chocolate. look forward to reading more soon…Christine