Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Sashiko inspiration!

In March this year I went to the Stitches and Craft Show here in Brisbane . It was a rare treat of a day all to myself and I was prepared this time by booking into a few workshops in advance by email.

Having lived in Japan in my 20s for 3.5 years, I have a fascination for all Japanese styles of handicraft and tried a lot while living there and on later visits back. Sashiko is something I've wanted to get into for a long time and have done a few smaller pieces in the past to make into greeting cards or coasters.

At the show, I went to a demonstration of Hitomezashi by Jane from Be Be Bold, which is a 'one stitch' style of sashiko. It is based on geometric patterns which run horizontally, vertically, and diagonally and you concentrate on one direction at a time, sewing through from one end to the other. I bought these little coasters above as a kit and sewed them up at home later. I love the simplicity of this method and how effective it looks. When I get the time (ha!) I would love to sit down and design some of my own patterns and try a larger piece. I also really like the white background with brightly coloured thread - it makes such a fresh change from the traditional white and indigo.

I also tried my hand at Boro patchwork for the first time, at a workshop run by Sue from Indigo Niche and ended up with this great little pin cushion at the end of the hour. I love the imperfection of it and the idea of using the old to make the new with the recycling of old fabric offcuts. It now has a practical use and a position in my sewing room. It's lovely to see my own handmade pieces being put to use in there - you can see it below in my sewing room, along with some of the Japanese pottery pieces I made when living in Japan, that I now use for storage.

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