It is not a pattern book. It is a coffee table book about Yoko Saito's quilting journey. The book is divided into 3 parts : My quilt journey, Quilts, and Bags.
First, let me tell you my impression.
I didn't know what to expect. I have known Yoko Saito's work for a long time, have met her several times, have taken classes with her, have visited her shop in Tokyo and have seen many of her quilts in different exhibitions in France. I have almost every single pattern book Yoko Saito has published, both in Japanese and in English or French when they were available. I have all her Quilt Party Catalogues which are beautiful books showing all the quilts made by her students throughout the year. So what would this book offer me that I did not already have? Well, .... so much more!!! Let me explain you why.
The first part, My Quilt Journey, is quite short and Yoko Saito speaks about her art and her beginnings showing her very early quilts. But immediately, you realize that the book you are holding is just a different type of books! It is not so much about the texts but about the quilts themselves. How can it be, you might wonder?
Well, let's move on to the second part of the book : Quilts. There are 20 quilts showcased in this part from her first quilts to the latest ones. You can see the entire quilts with a text in which Yoko Saito explains its story. And then the show starts!!! There are detailed photos of the quilts, a lot of photos, getting closer and closer, giving you a sense of Yoko Saito's amazing handwork, hand appliqué, hand quilting! These photos give you the opportunity to see the texture of the fabrics used. When looking at the photos in this book, I have the same feeling I had when seeing Yoko Saito's quilts for real! I do know the sky's the limit, but I can assure you Yoko Saito is already high up! Her work gives me goosebumps!!! I have never seen so many details thanks to the close-up photos in any other books.
The Bag part is a bit shorter with 8 bags showcased but you will find the same detailed photos which will leave you speechless and dreaming.
I have decided to just post here a few photos that you can also see on Martingale's website. I am not adding any others as I do not want to spoil the pleasure you are going to have when discovering them! But believe me, you're in for a treat!
If you want the patterns, they are available in different books and magazines both in English and French. In the USA, the publisher is Stitch Publications. In France, Quiltmania has published many of her books (both translations from Japanese and original publications). Moreover, two fabulous quilts showcased were published in Quiltmania magazines (references are given in the book). Les Editions de Saxe have also translated a few books into French.
I believe this book is a book both for those who want to discover Yoko Saito's amazing work but also also those who, like me, do know her work but want to discover it in more depth and detail.
For me, YOKO SAITO Through the Years will be one of my bookshelves' treasure!