Not Just Your Average Quilt

At first glance, Fraser Smith’s quilts are finely quilted, richly colored textile art pieces that beg to be touched. They hang in graceful folds from casually strung rope lines. You look both ways to make sure no one’s watching, and against all quilt-show etiquette, you reach out to touch the quilt and unexpectedly encounter not soft folds of fabric, but hard painted wood!

Unlike most fabric artists, Fraser makes his quilts from giant blocks of bass wood with power tools, grinders, scalpels, dental tools, sanding tools and silk dyes and stains. Each quilt can take six months to a year to complete, and finished quilts can weigh between 80 and 130 pounds! His work entitled “Floating” is on permanent display at the National Quilt Museum in Paducah, Kentucky. You can see more of his quilts and other carved wood objects, and even download desktop wallpaper on Fraser’s website,

Photo: Jewel Pool (detail), courtesy of and © Fraser Smith