mindful Sashiko Importance of ordinary day

Importance of ordinary day | Mindful Sashiko

It has been a long time since my last post, which was about Sashiko Workshop Weekend in NYC. It means it has been a long time since I had done Mindful Sashiko. Although I hoped to update our Sashiko works, review of great Sashiko workshops and coming up projects, I got sick right after the workshop, then my daughter caught the flu, then, of course, I received it from her.

 

Importance of healthy ordinary day.

 

My primal job is to be a homemaker in my household.

While my wife goes to work, I prepare the house so everyone can have the healthy and comfortable life. As much as I would like to devote my entire life to Sashiko, putting family first is something I promised to my father (who passed away in 2013.) It is very uncommon for a man to be a (semi) stay-at-home father, and put family first more than his work. I respect all of the homemakers who try their best to keep a household comfortable. It isn’t an easy job as it sounds, especially when a member of the family is sick, it is very hard to see him/her suffer.

 

Every time I face to the difficulty in terms of health, I realize that I have forgotten how important it is to have a good health.

I decided my life to be a supporter of my daughter, my wife, and my mother: 3 generations of my princesses. It is my ordinary day, and the health is very important for appreciating these ordinary days.

 

 

Find yourself. Recommending Mindful Sashiko.

 

Today was the first day I could have the needle in a while.

I find myself appreciating what I have by making every stitch. I realize myself enjoying mindfulness. In my understanding, there is no such a thing as “Mindful Sashiko” since Sashiko itself is already mindful. Hold the needle (like a Budha posture), and then make stitching with only focusing to make the even stitches. The time becomes peaceful and you will find yourself in meditation mode.

 

Mindful Sashiko Thread

 

Enjoying beautiful color of thread.

Feeling comfortable by touching the good weight, nice soft cotton fabric.

If you are lucky, you may smell the scent of Natural Dye.

 

The core concept of Sashiko: Mottainai (Too good to waste) will bring you the idea of appreciating what you have. It is not only an appreciation for what you have in form of materials but also the appreciation to what we have in the daily basis, family, friends, and society.

My goal is to share the concept of this beautiful life by introducing what Sashiko is.

 

 

 

More projects are coming up. I will keep you updated.

 

Online Sashiko Workshops.

More Natural Dye Sashiko Thread.

Japan-made beautiful Fabrics.

 

I have many projects in my mind to share and introduce. Keep you updated by subscribing the newsletter or RSS Feeds.

 

 

For Sashiko Workshop Graduates | Follow up

I always get encouraged by all of your voices (feedbacks & reviews) for my Sashiko Workshop. For those who are my Sashiko Workshop Graduates, please make sure that you receive the follow-up e-mails within 7 days after the workshop.

As I mentioned in the workshop, my goal is for you to keep enjoying Sashiko even after the workshop.

My Sashiko Workshop Graduates & the follow-up e-mails.

I usually get the e-mail address of participants throughout my online store when you purchase the seat. However, from time to time, I do not get the correct e-mail address because of typo or hand-writing. (Remember, I am a foreigner… hahaha.)

 

I send a follow-up e-mail as soon as I get back to home. The process completes within 7 days at most. If you do not receive any e-mail from me, it is either the e-mail address I have is incorrect, or the e-mail got into your junk e-mail box.

 

If you do not receive the e-mail, please contact me via the contact information on my business card. If you don’t have my business card, simply contact me through this website.

 

Contact to Atsushi | Upcycle Stitches

 

I would like to make sure that EVERYONE gets what I would like to share. If you have taken my workshop in the past, and have not received the e-mail at all, please let me know.

 

Also, if you enjoyed my workshop, please leave your feedback & Review here. It will help me to gather more people in future, and it will help me to come to NYC more often to offer advanced & Intermediate classes.

 

Help Atsushi by Leaving a Review

 

Sashiko Workshop Graduates

 

For those who cannot take my Sashiko workshop

 

I know. I am so sorry that I do not travel to your city and offer the workshop.

My goal is to travel everywhere in the world to offer the workshop. As of now, for the location & travel time, only NYC is the availability.

If you are part of a large organization, such as quilting group or hand-crafting group, please suggest my workshop to them. I am happy to travel when condition meets.

 

Also, I am in the process of developing the Sashiko Online Workshop. The actual face-to-face workshop is the ideal, but I would like to offer the option of taking it online without losing the benefit of my workshop.

 

Keep requesting me so I know where I need to go in future.

As of now, I have areas in my list…

  • Many Major cities in West Coast of USA | WA, OR, and CA.
  • Philadelphia Neighborhood
  • Japan (Yes, interestingly)
  • Portugal
  • Florida

 

You may subscribe our newsletter to get the latest information. I will definitely let you know when I have the workshop in anywhere in the world.

 

Thank you so much for your interest in Sashiko.

Because of your passion & loyalty, my mother and I can keep going this appreciative journey with Sashiko.

 

 

Sashiko and Boro | Translation from Sashi.Co Article

*This is a translation article from Sashi.Co & Keiko Futatsuya about Sashiko and Boro.

 

Boro and Sashiko in English

 

We learned that the word of “Boro” and “Sashiko” are getting popular and popular in English.

For us, who spent most of our life in Sashiko stitching, it is an honorable thing that people oversea found Sashiko interesting. We are happy to learn that Sashiko is inspiring some of the respected cultures like quilting and patchworking. For Boro, we respect each interpretation and transition to each fabric culture. Through various of interpretation, we sincerely hope the culture of “appreciating the fabric” and “Mottainai (too good to waste)” may remain in the future.

 

The Value of Boro We Define

 

When we look at a piece of Boro, there is a standard to measure its value: How many layers does the mending part have.

Boro is a result of repeating Sashiko with patching the fabric to the hole (and torn) that the ordinary people experienced in their ordinary life. There is a reason for the damage and holes as the result of friction. The damaged part of the fabric was heavily used in ordinary days. In current society, the knee part of jeans can be one example for that.

Since the part is heavily used, one mending is not the end of the whold process. Boro was(is) always an ongoing project. We believe it was ordinal thing to have the hole after patching the hole. The Japanese kept stitching the damaged part for functional reasons (and with decoration reasons when there is room for it.)

 

Therefore, the beautiful Boro has several layers, sometime even 4 fabrics of layers, to patch the part.

The fabric became thinner by friction, the faded color, the layers of the fabrics with one-of-a-kind color (which only time can create). The contrast of these precious color make Boro the Art, as the art curator introduce the Boro pieces to the world.

 

 

People tried their best to fashion themselves, in the absolute poverty, by collecting the thin fabrics with limited resources. They patched these to brighten their lives, even a bit, with Sashiko.

Boro was born in such a culture. We believe that Boro is a heritage of Sashiko (stitching) in Japanese Ordinary Days

 

Reviving the Boro over 100 of years.

We try our best to “revive” the Boros.

Old Boros we can find in the antique market & museum is the heritages from the people’s achievement in centuries ago. At the same time, many damaged vintage fabric, let’s call “to be Boro fabric” exist in the market and the ordinary people’s house.

We wash these “To be Boro fabric” then, we follow the original concept of Boro: to use the fabric, therefore we repair it.

 

Boro is very fragile. It gets easily damaged by friction.

Therefore, the people in 2018 may not use the Boro fabric in actual life. However, by us supposing the purpose of Boro, we believe we can sincerely understand how the people repaired, mend, patched, and did Sashiko on the Boros. It makes our Boros, to authentic traditional Boros.

Even more, simply speaking, the Sashiko with intending to be used in the society, is what we enjoy in Sashiko.

 

The “finished Boro” from the antique market amuse people. They are stunning beautiful and I understand art-curators call them the art. The Japanese in past made these stunning art in the ordinary life.

 

Over 100s of years, when we can share the feeling of appreciation of fabric and sort of the idea of “Wabi Sabi” in its beauty, the Sashiko and Boro will be more “usual” in our ordinary life in 2018.

 

 

*We wear our Sashiko and Boro Jacket in daily life to create more torn & fade colors so we can do more Sashiko on it. It is a never-ending journey.

 

References on Sashiko & Boro :

About Sashiko:

About Boro:

 

Original Article in Japanese is below:

刺し子と襤褸。私達の大切にしたい布文化。

Sashiko Rules Asanoha Pattern

Sashiko Rules | Right & Wrong in Sashiko Stitching?

One of the frequent questions I receive when I actually show my Sashiko stitching is that I am not following the “correct way of Sashiko.” In conclusion, I believe that there is not such a thing as Sashiko Rules. Therefore, there is No “right” and “wrong” in Sashiko Stitching. No regulations. No Bad Sashiko.

What I teach & share is a technique (hint) to make the better Sashiko, more beautiful Stitches, and Sashiko stitching with comfortable hand-movement. It is an advice, not the rule. It is always your choice to follow any information. I just simply prefer the way my Sashiko goes.

 

 

 

Should NOT lines cross in Sashiko Rules…?

“I learned that you should not cross the lines with stitches.”

Yes. Some Sashiko books & articles online suggested not to cross the stitches when the 2 or more lines cross. You may have understood that it i the absolutely bad thing to do to make the line crossed.

 

Me? I don’t really pay attention when the lines cross. What I pay attention to is if I can keep the same length of beautiful stitches. Here is a reason below.

 

Which Asano-ha do you prefer?

The reason is pretty simple. Which Asano-ha Sashiko patterns do you prefer?

I “can” follow the so-called the Sashiko rules of Asanoha pattern Sashiko to not to cross the lines. However, the Sashiko following the specific length and modify it leave the feeling of “artificial.” I would like to decide the size of stitching based on the project theme, not based on the Sashiko rules or regulations which someone made. I simply prefer the center or right Sashiko pieces on the photo. That’s why I keep saying there is no such a thing as Sasiko Rules.

 

Sashiko Rules Asanoha Pattern

 

Also, “No Rules Sashiko” is another reason I strongly recommend to learn how to transfer the patterns onto the fabric by yourself.

It is easier to purchase the “pattern pre-printed fabric” to have good Sashiko time. However, by learning how to draw & transfer the Sashiko pattern on the fabric, you will have the infinite possibility of your Sashiko project. Again, there are no rules. You can do whatever you want.

 

 

Sashiko is too ordinary to be the way of art.

 

Besides my personal preferences, I have several reasons for my belief that there is no rule for Sashiko.

Unlike Ikebana (Flower Art) and Chano-Yu (Tea Ceremony) which became considered as the way of Japanese art, Sashiko was too ordinary for many people to give it art status. As long as I know, there is no school for Sashiko, and there isn’t an organization to offer the types of certification. Sashiko was too ordinary for the Japanese to consider as the art.

 

In fact, the Boro, in form of the result of continuous Sashiko stitching, represented the poverty, and it was shameful for the Japanese to own so much Boros in their house. The people even buried the Boro fabric under the ground to hide the shame.

Sashiko Rules Boro

 

Since Sashiko was too ordinal, there are many kinds of Sashiko in Japan. I would say, the rural location with snowy winter & surrounded by mountain (or ocean) have the Sashiko culture or similar to that. The limited logistic to the fabric supply & limited opportunity for the winter labor developed the culture of Sashiko. In Japan, as you can see on the map, there are many locations that fulfill the requirement to be “Sashiko Place.” 

 

It is simple. Therefore you can make your own Sashiko.

 

It is interesting to see people disappointed when I tell them that there is no rule in Sashiko.

Well. Sometimes, it is easier to learn the new craft when rules and regulation limit your ideas. It is easier to follow the direction rather than creating your new one. I understand that. I try to answer the market demands by creating the DIY Sashiko kit and starter kit.

 

You may have some fancy image in Sashiko.

In reality, Sashiko is merely a technique of hand-stitching the Japanese developed from poverty. I respect Sashiko. However, I believe Sashiko shouldn’t something you should suffer to learn for decades. It is very simple. Therefore, there is infinite of possibility to apply Sashiko to any other crafting, embroidery, and any kinds of project. My goal is to share the enjoyment of Sashiko. The mindfulness of hand-stitching, and the beauty of Sashiko & Boros.

 

I respect all the Sashiko works in the world. I may mention my preferences. However, I strongly believe there is no such a thing as “Wrong Sashiko” and “Correct Sashiko.”

I hope you enjoy Sashiko more with ease in mind.