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I’m writing this while sitting in a Tokyo hotel, but I have so much more to tell you about this trip. Since leaving Tokyo Dome I took a train up to Takayama, another train down to Osaka, flew to Hirosaki in Aomori prefecture, then back to Tokyo again. Three weeks on the road and I’m almost ready to head back to California.
For the first two days of the Quilt Festival I kept my hands busy demonstrating the kit I designed for Tulip Co. and didn’t really get out of the booth much except during lunch breaks ...read more
The Tokyo Great International Quilt Festival is big. So big they hold it in a baseball stadium. So big it goes on for DAYS AND DAYS, even longer than the Houston Quilt Festival, which seems like forever when I’m working that show. This time I only had to work two days, and I got to sit and sew. On day three I walked the floor with tens of thousands of other crafty folks from all over Japan and ...read more
Introducing the Blue Giant! This quilt has been quietly plodding along in the background for well over a year now – but just as 2017 was getting underway I stitched the last stitch into the binding. Let's face it, a quilt top with pieces that big took no time at all to construct. It was the decision to hand quilt that dragged it out by months and months. I'm so glad I did it though, the larger stitches created with indigo-dyed sashiko thread really suit the aged and worn jeans. I just can't imagine that machine-quilting would have ...read more
Yesterday on QUILTsocial we talked about 4 ways to transfer embroidery designs to fabric. When I’m doing punchneedle embroidery I often just place my design under the fabric and trace it using a fine marker since the weaver’s cloth that I use is fairly easy to see through. Today I’m going to use Eleganza thread for Sashiko embroidery on a darker fabric, so I’ll have to use one a different technique such as one of the four that we discussed yesterday.
What is Sashiko?
Sashiko is a traditional form of embroidery from Japan. Most of the ...
It seems that the evenings disappear before I manage to switch on my sewing machine at the moment, so sadly I haven't got much to show since I finished the quilt top last week. However, I had to go into London on Friday. And of course, no train trip can be complete without some sort of hand-stitching.
Sara had just released the last 2 patterns for the sashiko sampler that she started in the summer so this was an ideal companion for the journey.
Square 8 was called Fundo (scale weights)
Square 9 was another curve design: Seven Treasures ... read more
Wow! What a busy show this year. I’ll keep this short because I’m off to build my booth for Quilt Festival and the preview night is tonight… and I need more coffee. In the meantime, I hope you enjoy this little window into the show. Some of the quilts in the video are from Japanese artists. If you can, be sure to see their exhibit.
Come visit me and see the new goodies at booth #1316!
A few days ago I was reading Preeti's blog (which I love) and discovered that I'd won a pretty fat quarter bundle.
Okay, so you can't see the print but trust me, I won. On Monday the box arrived! Oh my! These are pretty and modern and luscious! I was working pretty long hours so I didn't have time to take pictures or play.
I did, though, set the fabrics on the kitchen counters so that I could pet them anytime I walked by.
Riding the Shinkansen from Kyoto to Hiroshima I had plenty of time to relax notice the smaller details which usually go by the wayside.
For example, the formality with which every member of the train crew interacts with passengers. As a crew member exits a car, he or she will pause and bow to the passengers before crossing the threshold. Staff in department stores do this too as they exit the hall, which really surprised me. It’s so culturally ingrained that no one acknowledges it or seems to care.read more
I first stumbled onto Keiko Futatsuya’s work two years ago while searching for botanically-dyed sashiko thread. She was working with Hida Sashiko at the time, but has since moved on to produce her own work as an independent artist and designer.
The quality of her work is amazing, and has developed over time to reflect her passion and joy in handwork. Keiko’s boundless energy knocked me off my feet when I visited her earlier this year. She is in constant motion, darting from idea to to idea, rarely sitting still. While we sat in her tiny kitchen one ...read more
Sandra Deer of Atilio made this whole cloth quilt as a welcome gift to her newborn baby. The Sashiko stitching, a Japanese embroidery technique, is the defining element. I especially love the organic feel the clam shell pattern brings to the design.
Click the link below to see how she made it. Bonus: You get to see a photo of her sweet boy.
DIY: Sashiko Quilt, by Sandra
Click the link below if you need further instructions for how to create the Sashiko stitch.
Sashiko Tutorial, by Purl Soho