The art of patching scraps into bed quilts is a revered American tradition. But for a time, much of that handiwork had taken on a quaint dustiness. No more. Vintage patchwork has been embraced by, of all unexpected corners of the world, men’s fashion as primo material for kaleidoscopic jackets at couture prices.
Patchwork quilted clothing had existed before, but Emily Bode, winner of the inaugural Karl Lagerfeld Award for Innovation in 2020 and the CFDA emerging designer of the year in 2019, is credited as the first to transform it into high fashion under her hugely influential label Bode. She’s now one of many: as the New York Times reported this week Men’s Wear Is on a Quilt Trip. Here at Remodelista, we’ve also been taking note of antique American quilts surfacing in fresh-looking rooms near and far: as art, upholstery, and, yes, also bedding.
Cutting up vintage handwork has understandably raised some alarms. Those who put old quilts to new uses say they only repurpose castoffs, frequently stained and damaged goods from thrift stores, and in doing so, give them new life. See what you think.