Home » Blog » Quilt Market 2017 Yoko Saito’s Schoolhouse Presentation on her New Fabric Collection

Quilt Market 2017 Yoko Saito’s Schoolhouse Presentation on her New Fabric Collection

Yoko Saito's Centenary 23 Schoolhouse Presentation

At Schoolhouse this fall, Yoko Saito introduced her fans to her gorgeous Centenary 23 fabric line, available in 2018. You can see all 61 fabrics in the collection on Lecien’s website. As she showed the fabrics, she gave wonderful tips about how she incorporates the various fabrics into quilts.



Yoko Saito’s Tips for Appliques

The Centenary 23 fabric line included several fabulous brown prints, suitable for trees. Saito-san recommended using the prints vertically for tree appliques, and horizontally for representing paths or streets.

Yoko Saito's Centenary 23 fabric- brown for bark









She was also insistent that quilters use more than one fabric for tree appliques, because no tree has just one color!









Several of her fabrics incorporated leaves and trees, and gave completely different effects when viewed up close or from a distance.

Yoko Saito Centenary 23 fabric- mottled leaves








Saito-san encouraged us to consider using both sides of the fabric, as sometimes the backside of the fabric provides the right amount of color and a softer design.

Using Fabric as a Design Element

Saito-san is renowned for her extremely detailed, intricate appliques and quilting, so I was delighted with her tip about selecting background fabrics. She said that using a subtly busy print for the background makes it look like you appliqued more than you really did.









The Centenary 23 collection includes a basket print in several color options. She created this print because she loves Nantucket baskets. She recommends using the basket weave print in sashings.









One of my favorite prints from the new collection is this stunning black and red print.  It’s such a contrast to most of her palette, but it works perfectly with the other fabrics.









The new collection also includes new Etoffe Improvue linens for clothing.  Here is Saito-san modeling one of the three new linen prints in her gorgeous tunic.









Saito-san hinted that one of her new quilting books will also include patterns for making clothing, and knitting! I’m starting to learn knitting NOW  so I’ll be ready by the time this book is available in English (a couple of years down the road!)

So, that’s it for my Schoolhouse recap! Next week I will be sharing photos from Saito-san’s exhibit at Market and Festival.

If you love Yoko Saito’s work, please check out these blog posts:

Yoko Saito’s Favorite Projects Schoolhouse Presentation

Yoko Saito Sightings

Starting a Yoko Saito Quilt

Loved this post? Please subscribe to my newsletter to stay in the loop with all The Caffeinated Quilter Adventures!

Happy Stitching!!



  1. Celtic Cate says:

    So fun that you actually got to meet Saito-san!! Looks like some of the fabrics would be perfect as inspiration to finish the taupe study, too. I’ll be looking forward to her new book, once it’s in English. (I can knit and purl, but I hate following written charts, so I’m a very basic knitter.) Some of the Japanese pattern books for clothing are beautiful (though not always geared toward larger body types). Such a beautiful aesthetic all the way around. Thanks so much for sharing!
    P.S. Finished piecing my Loverly table runner when I had some time off work but don’t know when I’ll have time to quilt it. I think my fabric background choice was a little too busy, but it was definitely a fun adventure.

  2. Michelle Flamer says:

    Thank you Emily for sharing Saito-san’s tips-I love all of her fabric. I used an early version of her nantucket basket prints to make a project board-nice use for that fabric since I didn’t have to cut is up!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *