Japanese Traditional Boro

Japanese Traditional Boro | We Revive them

“Boro (襤褸)” means a piece of ragged cloth in Japanese. Recently, with spreading a word & culture of “Boro” spreading to the world, the word itself starts having other meaning besides simply “ragged cloth.” I enjoy the various interpretation of the culture of Boro and many Boro-inspired art-works. I appreciate the beauty of contemporary Boro culture. However, as a group of Sashiko artists, we would like to introduce how the Japanese Traditional Boro look like.

 

Not only patchwork. A result of repetitive repairing.

Boro is not only about patchworking small swatches of fabric into one art. The big difference from the western patchwork art is that the main purpose of the project was repairing the torn fabric.

Some of the Boro we can find in the antique market is too fragile to use. We have experienced a valuable piece of Boro “washed away” in hand-washing process. Therefore, we understand that some of the Boro pieces should be kept in the museum or other exhibition facilities.

However, what we would like to pass down to the next generation is not only the beautiful pieces of Boro but also the culture of Boro including how to make these. We continuously search for a good piece of Boro, wash them carefully with expecting some damages and loss, then patch them together to revive the fabric. As exactly the Japanese a few hundred years ago performed, we make the Boro fabric.

 

Our Boro arts are “clean” and “usable” in your daily life.

We use the Boro, then we repair it. The repetitive repairing makes the authentic Japanese traditional fabric.

 

Boro from Japanese Tradition

 

 

At Random Beauty in Japanese Traditional Boro?

Some people say that the beauty in Boro is a product of at random repairing & mending. Is that really so? We do not agree with that. It is true that the Japanese did not have enough fabric to create a new jacket or a blanket. They had to repair a hole or torn part by using other old fabrics.

However, if they didn’t care about beauty or artistic perspective of Boro, why did they patch only one type of fabric? I believe that they tried to be as fashionable as they can, in limited resources of fabrics.

It also reflects the interesting Japanese culture of shame. The Boro was a symbol of “poverty” and the Japanese felt shame on the patched Boro. With following this culture, our Boro Jacket has more patches inside of Jacket.

 

We try to follow the old traditional way of Boro making.

With understanding how the Japanese would think and repair, we believe we revive the fabric and Boros as the Japanese in the 18 century do in 2018.

 

The core of Boro | Appreciation.

Please understand that I am not criticizing the current movement of contemporary Boros. I enjoy watching many arts inspired by the Traditional Boro, and I get inspired by the Boros made in current society.

 

The core concept of Boro is appreciating what we have.

As long as we follow this core idea of Boro, the result of Boro (patchworking, repairing and quilting) can be in any form.

 

In this fast-paced society with mass production & mass consumption, appreciating the small piece of fabric is off the mainstream. It is time-consuming and not efficient.

 

However, I believe it would be nice to leave the culture of appreciation to fabric is a great gift we can leave to the next generation. In addition to the culture and beauty of repairing the fabric, if we can share how fun Sashiiko & Boro are in daily life, we can impact a bit to the current society to more sustainable society.

I want you to have the one in your home.

We sell the Japanese Traditional Boro for those who would like to have the actual Boro piece in your home. I believe our pricing is very reasonable for the authentic look Boro pieces. All the Boro pieces were made in 2017, with repairing and patchworking the severely damaged/torn small swatches of Boro with Sashiko.

 

They are available on our Etsy store. Please click the link below if you are interested.

 

#001Boro_Square

Price: $135.00

Size: 17″ x 13″ / 43cm x 33 cm

Japanese Traditional Boro 001_1 Japanese Traditional Boro 001_2

 

#002Boro_Stripe

Price: $250.00

Size: 36″ x 15.5″ / 91 cm x 40 cm

Japanese Traditional Boro 002_1 Japanese Traditional Boro 002_2

 

#003Boro_Purposed Random 

Price:$250.00

Size: 34″ x 15.5″ / 86cm x 40 cm

Japanese Traditional Boro 003_2 Japanese Traditional Boro 003_1
Sashiko Thread Thanksgiving Weekend Discount

Sashiko Thread Thanksgiving Weekend Discount

Happy Thanksgiving! Here is the Sashiko Thread Thanksgiving Weekend Discount Deal!

Use the code for “7% OFF” of our Sashiko Thread Collection. The deal expires on Monday 27th at 2 pm. As you know, we rarely issue the discount coupons, so enjoy a small discount on what we are proud of.

The code: BOG66JNLPES0

 

We weren’t sure if it is a good idea to ride on the “Thanksgiving / Black Friday / Cyber Monday” Discount Season. However, we also realize that there are people expecting some discount or great deals for this season (including myself for electronics and such. I could use a new printer… some customers have been receiving the invoice in black & white printing.)

The deal isn’t a great discount in comparison the other huge retail stores, but please accept our effort to appreciate the Holiday Season Specials. Winter is a good season to enjoy Sashiko in a warm house.

 

Since we operate as a very small business, we will try to take some time off on the holiday weekend. Please understand that all of the order will be prepared and shipped out on and/or after Monday 27th. Also, in case of receiving many orders, the inventory thread may run-out. We may ask you for extra days to make a shipment.

Even if the delay happens, you will get the package before Christmas since we plan to re-stock everything before that.

 

Thank you for your understanding.

 

Another Sashiko Thread Thanksgiving Weekend Discount?

 

There is a reason why we don’t offer the great discount for the holiday season; we will not be able to run a business if we discount more than a certain percent.

We may offer other discount deals over Christmas or other holiday seasons, but the discount will not exceed 20% discount. Our goal is to introduce Sashiko to the world “continuously”. We sincerely appreciate your understanding of our policy in offering the discount coupons.

 

Happy Thanksgiving.

Now it is time to prepare the big Thanksgiving Dinner!

 

 

Sashiko Workshop Schedule 2018 Cover

NYC Sashiko Workshop Schedule 2018

The Sashiko Workshops in Tribeca (in 2017) was a great success. I have received so many positive reviews, and I get so many requests to come back to Tribeca to offer another workshop. I’ve been talking to a great partner when would be a possible time to offer the next Sashiko Workshops. Here is a Sashiko Workshop Schedule 2018 in New York City.

 

A whole view of Sashiko Workshop Schedule 2018

Please register yourself for the workshops in 2018.

Sashiko Stitching Workshop (Basic&Core)

 

 

 

So much Passion. So Grateful to offer the Workshop.

 

As you know, Sashiko has been part of my life.

It is so interesting to receive so much passion Sashiko. The Sashiko arts we create are getting popular, and I am so happy that the people would like to learn our technique and culture. Over the Sashiko Workshops in Tribeca, November 2017, we had a TV crew to film a short introduction of Sashiko in the United States. Atsushi will be on TV.

Be part of our Sashiko group (before Atsushi gets so busy… just kidding) by checking the Sashiko Workshop Schedule 2018.

 

Sashiko Workshop Schedule 2018 4

 

Always, the goal is to share the fun of Sashiko

 

Regardless of the popularity of our Sashiko art or Sashiko culture, the goal is always the same. “We would like to share the fun culture of Sashiko.”

In order to introduce what Sashiko is, we offer the free Youtube Video as well as the articles on this website. However, in order to “feel” the fun of Sashiko, participating the workshop is the best way.

Every time, we get more confident that what we offer can satisfy anyone who is interested in Sashiko, even for those who have some Sashiko experience already. There is no such a thing as “right” or “wrong” in Sashiko. However, there is techniques we developed over time to make it more beautiful, easy, and after all enjoyable.

Please consider our workshop as an opportunity to enjoy Sashiko more.

If you don’t know anything about Sashiko, it is the great way to start. If you already know about Sashiko, then it is a great way to add the technique and knowledge to your art-work.

 

Sashiko Workshop Schedule 2018 7

 

We had had more than 20 workshops in the previous year, with almost 100 people participated.

There are no negative reviews in our brief “after workshop questioner”. We are getting confident in what we do!!

 

Sashiko Workshop Schedule 2018 | Let us plan more

Since the instructor Atsushi is located in the central PA, where is about 4 hours of driving away from NYC,  we cannot offer the workshops every weekend (We wish we could!). In addition, Atsushi’s main role, for now, is to be a stay-at-home father. Realistically speaking, offering Sashiko Workshops 3 ~ 4 times a year is a reasonable amount to plan the schedule.

 

However, we are willing to offer as many workshops as possible. Even more than 4 times per year if there is a need.

In order to do so, we need a certain amount of participant in the workshops. We would like to know how many people in the East Coast are willing to join the Sashiko Workshops. Please share your passion by posting comments here and/or registering yourself to our mailing list with checking “Yes” to the workshop notification.

 

We are looking forward to meeting you!

 

Sashiko Workshop Schedule 2018 3

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Sashiko Workshop Graduate Achievements all

Sashiko Workshop Graduate Achievements Part.1

Since I started Sashiko Workshop in 2016, I have shared my Sashiko expertise with more than 50 people. Thanks to good friends of mine, I can keep continuing this journey. One of the graduates shared her Sashiko works after the workshops. These are the photos of “Sashiko Workshop Graduate Achievements”! You can expect to learn enough skills to do the similar work after taking our Sashiko workshops.

 

We still have a few seats available in coming-up workshops next weekend in NYC. Don’t miss this rare opportunity to start the beautiful upcycling work, Sashiko.

 

Sashiko Stitching Workshop:

Still Available on

  • Saturday 11/11, 10 am to 1 pm.
  • Sunday 11/12, 2 pm to 5 pm

You can learn how to make good Sashiko stitches with appropriate tools and techniques. This is a basic, yet fundamental and core, workshop to get better in stitching. Even if you have some experience in Sashiko stitching, this may be beneficial workshop if you aren’t 100 % comfortable in using the unique Sashiko tools such as long needles and a round shape Sashiko thimble. The appropriate understanding of “how to use tools” will increase your productivity of your Sashiko, and result in the better Sashiko stitching.

 

Sashiko Mending Gathering:

Still Available on

  • Sunday 11/12, 10 am to 1 pm

This is another rare opportunity to have “EVERYTHING” you ever need to enjoy hand-made Sashiko Mending to your own garment.

Atsushi will provide the necessary informative presentation and his collection of Sashiko fabric, thread, tools, and ideas. Bring your own garment and enjoy the 3 hours of intensive Sashiko Mending.

 

I want your “Sashiko Workshop Graduate Achievements”

 

Take a look at the beautiful and unique pieces he accomplished.

Boro-ish and vintage fabric patches on Jacket, Shoes, and Jeans. She is happy that her work got so productive and accurate. Join our Sashiko circle and enjoy your own project. It is all about appreciating what we have and upcycling your favorite garment and then enjoy the beautiful result.

 

Sashiko Workshop Graduate Achievements 7 Sashiko Workshop Graduate Achievements 1  Sashiko Workshop Graduate Achievements 3

 

 

 

 

Sashiko Denim Mending Live Streaming 12

Sashiko Denim Mending Live Streaming

Online Live Streaming sounded a bit overwhelming to me. I thought I would need a list of good equipment and streaming software. In fact, what I needed was a smartphone. I can film comfortable video enough for people to watch and to comment. So here we go. Sashiko Denim Mending Live Streaming by Atsushi & Upcycle Stitches.

 

 

Youtube Live and Archives

My free time is during the weekdays, noon to 3:30 pm. I am aware that this is not the best time for the people who are interested in Denim Mending with Sashiko.

Please enjoy the video archives on our Youtube Channel. If you have a specific question, please leave the comment on Youtube with mentioning the time in the video. I will answer the question in the following video I stream online.

 

I do not intend to form this live streaming as the “teaching” opportunity. If you would like to learn the mending techniques and the process intensively from me, please consider participating to one of my Sashiko workshops. I offer workshops/gathering opportunities focusing on Sashiko Mending besides the basic (core) Sashiko Stitching Workshops.

Regardless, I believe you can learn a lot by watching the unedited video with my mending process and reading Q&A.

 

Sashiko Denim Mending Live Streaming 11

 

Sashiko Denim Mending Live Streaming with your project

I am now a bit of confident to what I like to do.

Of course, I am proud of my professionals in Sashiko stitching. However, for the Sashiko mending with Denim Garment, I felt as if I was an amateur. Many people gave me the compliment that I should begin promoting myself as the Sashiko artist. Then, I decided to live stream with sharing my specialty.

It is a probably good time to start accepting custom orders. Here it is.

 

Sashiko Denim Mending Live Streaming  22

 

I will start working on this more closely after my workshops in November, the last workshop opportunity in 2017.

As you know, since everything is done by hands, there are so many projects I can do (possibly one or two per months at the most…?) Also, I set the fee lower than I usually do for the other Sashiko orders. I want to see if I can continue offering the service first. Customer Satisfaction is very important for me. Also, please allow me to use your order on Sashiko Denim Mending Live Streaming. Many people are interested!

 

Sashiko Stitching Live Streaming

In addition to Sashiko Denim Mending Live Streaming, I offer Sashiko Stitching Live Streaming on Instagram.

This is a simple live video with me just stitching with Sashiko thimble and needle. It is a good opportunity for you to see how actual Sashiko artist makes stitches. For this Sashiko Stitching Live, I talk mainly in Japanese. The comments there would be also mainly Japanese. However, if you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave it so I can switch the language to answer or to mention regarding your actions.

Viewers say it can be a good practice of Japanese 🙂

 

I also set the time frame for the live streaming. If I need to miss it, I will announce it on the Instagram account.

I will see you, every Tuesday and Thursday, starting around 9 am in Eastern Time Zone for an hour or so.

 

Sashiko Live Streaming

 

Sashiko Denim Repair Service and Fee

I am so honored to receive many compliments to my jeans after performing the Sashiko Denim Repair. Although I started mending my jeans as my hobby, I decided to offer the Sashiko Denim Repair Service for ones who can share my understandings to Sashko Stitching and Sashiko’s concept. I am sorry that there are so many conditions to agree before the actual repairing order. However, please understand it is necessary because all of the services will be done by hands, and I would need to rely on customer’s common sense for the better service.

 

This is the new service I provide out of my routine days. Before launching this as the official service, I would like to have a sort of probation period for myself, to see if this is satisfying service for the customers.

 

Outline of Sashiko Denim Repair Service

*This is the deal for Probation Period

 

This is a service Atsushi will repair your jeans with Sashiko stitching and Sashiko stitched fabric. (See sample of Sashiko stitched fabric).

If you are interested, please contact me first with photos of your favorite jeans with the hole(s) or tear(s) after reading this article and agreeing on the conditions. We will discuss the details, then I will send you the address to make a shipment to.

 

Here are some conditions.

  • I may decide the kinds of Sashiko fabric I use in the project. I will probably not take order-made Sashiko fabric for this service. However, please let me know what kind of color you would like or what kind of pattern you would like since your preference is important for us.
  • I will inform you how long it would take to get service done. It is NOT promised time frame. Please understand that it is just an estimate.
  • I set the flat service fee for the probation period. This fee includes one big hole OR several small holes repairment. You may refer my previous works and ask for the estimated fees if you want to have more.
  • Please send me the jeans AFTER washing it. I understand that some people do not wish to wash the jeans, but doing Sashiko on dirty jeans is very difficult.
  • If you prefer to have Sashiko stitching on the new jeans, it may be possible based on your request.
  • If you prefer to have the order-made Sashiko fabric to patch or have so many parts to “repair,” I will do so with the regular price. I will give you the estimate so please send me the photos.
  • Please allow me to use your project in Youtube/Instagram Live Streaming

 

The fee for the Sashiko Denim Repair Service:

99 USD 

The regular price will be about $200 and up, depending on the repair I would need.

 

What is included in the fee

  • Sashiko fabric patch needed in the repair service
  • Labor fee for Atsushi
  • Shipping (Priority Mail with USPS) Fee to return to you

 

Qualification for the Service

  • Read and be aware of my understanding to Sashiko and Boro
  • Willingness to upload the “before/after” photos of the service on your blog, SNS or Instagram with referring this description page and account.
  • Permission for me to write about your order & work on your project on Live Streaming.
  • Promise that you wear the jeans I serviced continuously. I believe Sashiko shines the most in the daily usage.

 

Sample of my results with Sashiko Denim Repair Service

 

I will keep adding my results and orders from customers.

It would be nice that someone in the world is wearing what I stitch & mend.

 

*Estimates is based on the jeans I worked on. It may vary depends on your preferences. I am happy to discuss your needs.

 

Sashiko Vintage Patchwork

Using the Japanese Vintage Fabric Swatches, makes the big fabric by patchworking it, then perform Sashiko and patch it on the Jeans.

You may design where and how to patch the fabric.

I will make the patchwork fabrics since the Japanese Vintage Fabric is very limited.

 

Fee Estimate: $650.00

Including materials and labor.

 
 

Sashiko Jeans

 

Sashiko has another purpose of strengthening the fabric. By me stitching directly onto your jeans, the fabric will be stronger and more durable.

All stitching is done by hand.

As of now, Asano-ha & Shippou Patterns are available.

Fee Estimate: 

Asano-ha Pattern 

1 leg 1 side: $180

1 leg both side: $300

Entire Jeans: $500

 

Shippou Patten 

1 leg 1 side: $220

1 leg both side: $400

Entire Jeans: $650

 

Sashiko Denim Repair Service Shippou

 

Sashiko Mending Gathering | Upcycle What you Love

The Sashiko mending workshop I had offered in past was a great success. I have received great numbers of positive reviews with satisfaction. The voices from participants encouraged me to offer it again, but this time, something a bit different. We name it “Sashiko Mending Gathering”. (Click Link to purchase the ticket). Let’s get together and learn how Sashiko Artist, Atsushi, creates one-of-a-kind denim.

 

Sashiko Mending Gathering

 

Details of Sashiko Mending Gathering

Here is a detail of Sashiko mending gathering.

We gather in a private space located in Manhattan’s Tribeca Neighborhood and enjoy mending, stitching, repairing, decorating and whatever doing to your own favorite cloth.

 

Time: Sunday November 12th | 10 am to 1 pm

Location: Tribeca in NYC | The specific address will be notified to the participants.

Fees:

  • $95 for new participants.
  • $68 for those who have taken Atsushi’s Basic Sashiko Stitching Workshop. If you plan to take it over the same weekend, you can get this ticket. Please bring the needles and thimble you have received in the previous workshop, or you could purchase them on the site.

 

Sashiko Mending Gathering 5

Easy-going, Fun-focused, yet informative Sashiko gathering

 

3 hours of mending, repairing, stitching, designing and small presentations of Sashiko tips. Some private instructions from Atsushi are also available. Learn the history of Sashiko mending Practice on denim and indigo fabric provided by Atsushi.

Please bring your own materials to work on, patch on, or mend with.If you prefer working on just stitching, I will have some materials to work on for purchase.

 

The gathering comes with:

  • Approximately $20 value of authentic Sashiko stitched fabric. You will choose the appropriate size of patching (7-inch x 6 inches) in the workshop so you can start mending before preparing the Sashiko fabrics. If you prefer a blank fabric with a pattern on, it is possible to get them, too.
  • A small presentation to “how to prepare the Sashiko fabric” with tools and materials included.
    • The other small presentations will be about:
      • transfer the patterns
      • use needles and thimble
      • practice the Sashiko running stitch
      • choose the right sashiko fabric for the mending
  • A set of small swatches of Indigo dye fabric and Japanese denim fabric.
  • An opportunity to choose and use special Sashiko thread from Atsushi’s collection.
  • Boro, Sashiko, and other mended samples are available to inspire you. Some of them are available for purchase, too.
  • Threads, needles, thimbles, and other Sashiko related materials are for sale at a special price.
  • Follow up with you by email on your project if you don’t finish during the class
  • A selection of free Sashiko patterns

 

Sashiko Mending Gathering 6

 

*Minimum of 4 participants and maximum of 10 participants.

*Refund Policy: Attendees can receive refunds up to 14 days before your event start date. The ticket is transferable to someone for the purchase date and time, but not transferable to the other date and time after the refunds policy ends.

 

What to expect to the gathering:

Sashiko Mending Gathering is a fun and enjoyable time. It isn’t as structured as the other workshop I offer and you will work on your own project after Atsushi’s brief presentation. It is like an “Independent Study.” However, it will be informative gathering since Atsushi will be available for you to get you informed. (If you have attended Atsushi’s workshop, you know that he doesn’t stop talking even if you want him to.)

(If you have attended Atsushi’s workshop, you know that he doesn’t stop talking even if you want him to.)

 

 

 

What is the difference from the other Sashiko Workshops Atsushi offers?

Basic Sashiko Stitching Workshop (SSW) is the core Sashiko workshop Atsushi offer. If you are interested in Sashiko stitching, you need to take this workshop. In 3 hours of move-your-own-hand workshop, the participants learn how to use unique equipment such as long needles and a round shaped thimble.

The SSW is so important to learn Sashiko. Therefore I need to structure the workshop strictly enough so that every participant get the core of Sashiko. Therefore, the maximum participants are always limited to 6, and the SSW is a prerequisite to many of my workshops.

 

I designed Sashiko Mending Workshop (SMW) to meet the market demand for “Sashiko Mending” and therefore it was a pretty intensive workshop. My goal through SMW was to provide all the necessary information for participants to perform the mending at home, with Sashiko Stitching and Preparing Sashiko project by yourself. Because of its volume, we needed to cover the materials without talking into depth.

In 3 hours of SMW, we covered the presentation teaching how to…

  • prepare the fabric appropriately
  • transfer the patterns
  • use needles and thimble
  • practice the Sashiko running stitch
  • choose the right sashiko fabric for the mending
  • actual mending with some hand-stitching techniques
  • Mending itself

As you can imagine, in order to make these happen in 3 hours, I only can cover these materials briefly.

I still believe that SMW is a great workshop for many people, especially who wants to learn both Sashiko and mending simultaneously. I may offer them in the future again, but this time, I would like to focus on “enjoying” the mending with hints from Sashiko technique and culture.

 

 

 

Sashiko and Contemporary cloth mending

“Do people need our strict Sashiko stitching methods in mending?”

Interestingly, the answer is No.

Yes, our Sashiko stitching methods will be beneficial to know when you prepare the Sashiko stitched fabric or perform Sashiko stitching on the cloth directly. However, when he/she repair a hole on the jeans, I sometimes do not use the technique I teach in the workshop.

 

There is another challange to make “mending” as the structured workshop.

After going through the explanation and demonstration of “how to”, it becomes a sort of “independent study” because the participants work on their own clothes. Sashiko Mending Gathering is created for those who wanted to jump on their own mending project instead of learning the mending process I do.

 

Sashiko Mending Gathering is not as organized as the Sashiko Mending Workshop. I will spend the small time to “teach” you “how to”, which I usually offer in SMW. You will have a chance to learn (&see) how to use the thimble and needle correctly, too. I just do not “teach” you how to do that.

You will also have me to answer any kinds of questions regarding Sashiko and mending.

Sashiko Mending Gathering 3

 

Let’s share the passion with new friends.

 

It is always a good surprise when I meet a group of people who share the same interest.

Repairing your own cloth is a very fun process. It will not only create the beautiful “One-of-a-kind” art piece you wear every day, but it also adds the value to the cloth with appreciation. The more I put stitching on my denim jeans, the more I love it to wear.

 

I hope you can join this opportunity to share your beautiful idea and lovely Sashiko project.

Sashiko Pattern Preprinted or Transfer Pattern Yourself

I frequently get a common question when I talk about the process of preparing Sashiko project. “Which is better, to get Sashiko Pattern Preprinted Fabric or to transfer patterns oneself?”

My answer is always on the one with transferring pattern by yourself. Why? It is simply more fun when you have better control on your own Sashiko project. Sashiko isn’t only about stitching. It is about making your own favorite item with stitching your own preferable patterns. Therefore, I recommend learning how to transfer the Sashiko pattern onto your fabric. It isn’t difficult at all.

 

Easiness of Sashiko Pattern Preprinted Fabric

At the same time, however, I understand it seems like easy to just purchase the Sashiko Pattern Preprinted fabric. You can start stitching right after your package arrives.

There are many options available in the market. Especially for those with Japanese semantics patterns are very popular. When we had a shop in Japan, it was one of the best-selling items in the DIY section. Upcycle Stitches LLC carries some Sashiko Pattern Preprinted Fabric, too. Regardless of my preference or recommendation, I would like to follow the customers’ need.

 

Please do not ignore, however, that it is quite simple to transfer the pattern on the fabric. Although it may take a bit of practice to make it neat, the practice will be rewarding in your long journey with Sashiko.

 

Upcycle Stitches provide the tutorials online

Well. Yes. It may be easy for me to say it. I understand your worries.

Therefore, I uploaded a free online tutorial video how to transfer the Sashiko pattern onto the fabric. In the video, I introduce all the necessary materials to process it. Upcycle Stitches even sell the DIY kit for the practice of transferring the pattern with a reasonable budget.

Once you get used to it and keep the essential items in your box, it is completely up to your imagination to have Sashiko pattern on your Sashiko project. I want you to enjoy the freedom and the result with it.

 

 

 

Silk Screen the pattern for the bigger project.

 

The more I introduce Sashiko among my workshop participants, the more we understand the needs for Sashiko Pattern preprinted Fabric. Therefore, Sashi.Co & Keiko Futatsuya and I start considering to invest into silk screen printing. This allows us to prepare a bulk number of pre-printed fabric for customers without adding enormous variable (labor) cost.

 

It is, however, going to be a big investment, and we would sincerely appreciate your support on our Patreon page. You will get the exclusive deals there, too. Also, we would like to know what kind of patterns would suit to the U.S. market. Would you prefer the traditional geometric patterns? Or something I like such as Kamon family patterns? I wouldn’t make the picture based patterns since the customers’ preferences would vary a lot.

 

  • A.Traditional Geometric Pattern

Sashiko Pattern Preprinted 2

  • B.Kamon Japanese Family Pattern

Sashiko Pattern Preprinted 3

 

 

 

Please let us know by leaving the comment. Which do you like better? Geometric or Kamon?

 

 

Sashiko Stitched Fabric Discount 3

Patreon Special Offer| Sashiko Stitched Fabric Discount

Our goal is to introduce what Sashiko is. In order to achieve the goal, we share the sashiko fabric we stitched in the market. At the same time, however, we understand the Sashiko stitched fabric are expensive materials to get for your projects. Although we believe the pricing is reasonable, I decided to offer the special Sashiko Stitched Fabric Discount in order to spread our Sashiko Fabric across the world. I hope you will have a chance to enjoy the combination of Japanese textile (Usually, we use the Japanese vintage fabric) and beautiful our Sashiko stitching (Mostly, we use our Natural Dye Sashiko Thread).

Before the discount. I want to share our situation.

In order to achieve our goal to introduce Sashiko, ideally speaking, I would like us to focus on just Sashiko.

Not only working on our Sashiko projects but also creating more Sashiko tutorials and even writing a book within a good timing manner would be critical to introduce what Sashiko is to the world. However, unfortunately, we are not able to focus on these tasks because of financial situation. Keiko sometimes gets the part-time job for some necessary expense. Atsushi works on other jobs to get some cash.

Then we found this website called Patreon.

 

I would like to offer up to 40% discount on our Sashiko Stitched Fabric Swatches for those who understand what we are trying to achieve. I will enrich the contents of the Patreon page to share our goals and dreams. You can be our supporters (patrons) with $1 per month. Please consider to support us and enjoy the big discount we ever offer.  I sincerely appreciate your consideration, and contribution, in advance.Sashiko Stitched Fabric Discount

 

Details of Sashiko Stitched Fabric Discount

*This discount offer applied to only the supporters on our Patreon Page. The detail of discount is here.

I offer up to 40% discount based on the effort you would make to introduce Sashiko to the world. Please contact me through Patreon so I will issue the coupon directly to you.

 

 

Some of the effort you could do help us is…

  1. Be a patron on our Patreon Page. If you plan to purchase threads from us, we have a great deal for you as well.
  2. Use the fabric you purchased to your project, and share the photo with us. Any kinds of the project are fine such as Denim Mending, Frame the Fabric as the art, and making a small bag or cloth. 
  3. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, & Youtube (if you haven’t done yet)

 

Thank you very very much!!

Sashiko and Animism 1

Sashiko and Animism | Power of thoughts

Well. Don’t freak out by the title of “Sashiko and Animism”. It is still the website to introduce Sashiko.

I do not want to talk about specific religions here. However, the more I try to explain what Sashiko really is in English, the more I feel in need to learn about the Japanese culture on its beliefs. The Japanese believed that Yaoyorozu no Kami (八百万の神 – Eight million deities) reside in Shinrabansho (森羅万象 – all things in nature, the whole of creation). It is a part of Shinto, and I also feel very comfortable with this belief since I was raised in this concept. This Shinto concept is pretty similar to Animism (Not the same, though), so I am writing this article about Sashiko and Animism.

Sashiko isn’t merely a stitching after all

I believe that “Sashiko” is not only a product with hand-stitchings, but it is also the process of appreciating the fabric by mending, repairing, strengthening, and decorating. It is as simple as just lines of hand stitches. However, the people put thoughts into the stitching. In fact, it is almost impossible to NOT to put thoughts into it over several hours, sometimes several days and months of Sashiko stitching.

Have you compared the 2 individual Sashiko works done by hand and machine? They are different by look, but even more, they are completely different by something we cannot explain well. As you can imagine, a Sashiko sewing machine can make more even stitches than hand stitching. If the beauty of Sashiko is defined by the size of stitching, a machine would make the better Sashiko work. However, almost everyone thinks that the Sashiko work made by hand have better look before the explanation.

They are different by look, but even more, they are completely different by something we don’t explain well. As you can imagine, a Sashiko sewing machine can make more even stitches than hand stitching. If the beauty of Sashiko is defined by the size of stitching, a machine would make the better Sashiko work. However, almost everyone thinks that the Sashiko work made by hand have better look before the explanation. The beauty in imperfection? Yes, possible. However, I cannot stop thinking there is more of logics we can think of.

 

Therefore, I would like to link Sashiko to the concept of Animism a little bit. It was a bit challenging to relate Sashiko and Animism. However, the more I research about the link, I feel like I was supposed to write this article before investing my time to promote what Sashiko is. The concept of Sashiko and Animism can be the core of my activities.

Again I am not talking about the specific religion. I am talking about the power of our thoughts. 

 

Sashiko and Animism

According to the Cambridge English Dictionary, the Animism’s definition is:

the belief that all natural things, such as plants, animals, rocks, and thunder, have spirits and can influence human events 

(http://dictionary.cambridge.org/us/dictionary/english/animism) / No formal connection to Sashiko and Animism

 

This definition is very similar to Shinto the Japanese believed in a long time ago.

Sashiko’s origin comes from poverty and poor infrastructure. The Japanese couldn’t get enough materials to make the new clothes, and therefore they used the same fabric over and over. In the process of repairing, however, I do not think the Japanese were miserable about repairing their fabrics. Everyone around them did the same thing. The poor infrastructure means everyone in the area, except those who are exceptionally rich, had to go through the same lifestyle. They shared the same culture and life customs.

 

Instead of feeling miserable, Sashiko stitchers thought of the family or friends who would wear the fabric and clothes like husband and children. A husband working hard outside to provide the family, children keep helping the house chores. I believe the people thought of their family’s happiness when they stitched. These thoughts and love create the better Sashiko pieces. Boro is the ultimate sample of these thoughts. There is a spirit in a Sashiko work after repeatedly stitched, mended, repaired and patchworked.

*Although we value Boro as the art piece in the 21st century, there is a history that the Japanese felt shame on having Boros in their house because Boro & Patchworked indicated the poorness of the family. Regardless, I believed that the people thoughts of their family when they made Sashiko stitching.

 

No matter how poor the human is, the human never gives up on fashion. I believe the clothes and fashion is one of the biggest factors to differentiate human from animals.

Power of Thoughts we have

When I receive a piece of Sashiko work from my mother, Sashi.Co & Keiko Futatsuya, I always feel nostalgia. It could be because I was born in the Sashiko fabric & Sashiko family. At the same time, I feel, it is because she is making Sashiko works to surprise me. She always asks my opinion when she starts the new Sashiko project. I feel like every time she try to complete the project, her goal is to impress me.

Thinking of someone is a strong process in the concept of Animism. If a piece of fabric has a soul in it, the warm thoughts to wish someone’s well-being can make the soul more embraced. In different religion, the thoughts would be renamed to “pray”, “grace”, “worship” and so on. (You may know about this better.)

Sashiko and Animism

Some of my workshop participants left a great comment (kind of as a testimony) after trying our Boro-Jacket on. They said that they feel someone is protecting them by wearing it. I believe it is not exaggerating description of Power of Thoughts.

 

I don’t want you to be scared of me saying Sashiko and Animism. It isn’t about religion at all. It is about the care we can put into the fabric. An appreciation to something we have already.

 

Isn’t it what we need in this world now?

On top of Sashiko and Animism, here is the reason I came to write this article. A bit of my history until today.

 

I wasn’t ready until I experience difficulty in my life

 

When I was a child with Sashiko around me, I simply didn’t like the idea someone can decide my life; that I had to take over the family business. I didn’t like Sashiko.

When my father asked me to join the family business for restructuring the business to somewhat viable for employees and stuff, I focused on numbers. Sashiko was a form of merchandise and the values of Sashiko were purely calculated by the profit margin.

After March 2011, the big earthquake in Northeast Japan, I learned that Sashiko can help people throughout supporting the Sashiko project in Otsuchi, Iwate Prefecture. The practice of Sashiko can encourage, motivate, and even energize the people’s life. Ever since I discovered that Sashiko becomes more than a business or family tradition. I strongly believed that passing the culture of Sashiko down to the next generation is my lifetime mission. Until my father, unfortunately, passed away in 2013.

Once other stakeholders of company kicked us out from the company, I understood moving on to my new life without Sashiko would be my fate. I moved to the US, where my wife worked and became a stay at home father (homemaker). Honestly, I am very happy to be a father of beautiful child Leona. As the result, I moved on from Sashiko. I thought I would never see Sashiko. Sashiko brings too many good and bad memories.

In summer 2014, my mother asked me if I would be willing to help her to start a Sashiko project. Unlike me trying to get a new life without Sashiko, my mother couldn’t live a life without Sashiko. She wanted to make Sashiko artworks, but her financial situation didn’t allow her to purchase vintage fabric or invest into Natural Dye Sashiko Thread. As long as we ran a project a business, she could have enough money to keep making what she wants. Sashi.Co & Keiko Futatsuya started as the way to encourage Keiko to enjoy making Sashiko artworks financially and emotionally. She loves doing Sashiko for someone who she cares, and someone who she hopes to meet in future.

A little bit of care is what we need now, isn’t it?

And I believe that it is what we need in this work now. A little bit of care, each other.

 

Speed is very important to be successful in this society. Everything goes very fast. Fast food, fast fashion, everything seems to be, supposed to be Fast. When you wear a cloth, you would not know “who” made it. You would know the brand, but you would not see who designed it. In fast fashion, mass-produced and mass consumption world, the person who tailored your cloth wouldn’t know who would wear.

 

I just want to change it a bit.

You do not have to know who made what you wear. However, I want you to know that the person who made your jacket cared the person who would be wearing it. They put a lot of good thoughts into it. I am not talking about us being positive all the time. We do make Sashiko when we feel grumpy. Even grumpiness is a form of thoughts. The importance here is a soul existing in the fabric and it reacts to these thoughts. Any kinds of reaction would be good because it will make us feel a lot more “being-cared”.

 

I believe the antonym of Love is not Hate. When you hate someone, you put thoughts into him/her. You still care of him/her so you hate. I believe “Ignorance” is the opposite word of Love. When you don’t care for the person, you do not love him/her at all.

 

Sashiko and Animism 3

 

We want to spread the culture to appreciate what you have and what you will have, with forming a little bit of care. And this is the reason I would like to spread Sashiko. Why don’t you spend a little time of 30 minutes to mend, repair, or decorate a fabric that your loving one may use in the future? The 30 minutes you would spend with caring the person is exactly Sashiko and the culture I would like to introduce to the world.