Basic Sashiko Denim Mending Cover

Basic Sashiko Denim Mending | Quick Patching

One of the reasons that the word of Sashiko gets spread is a slow-fashion movement with Denim Jeans Mending. I once put a distance from Sashiko, and Sashiko Mending brought me back to this field after a year of absence. Sashiko Denim Mending is one of my (Atsushi’s) passion and I still enjoy it. Here is a quick video of Basic Sashiko Denim Mending.

 

A Procedure of Basic Sashiko Denim Mending

 

 

Here is a sample how it works.

  1. Prepare the fabric for the ideal Sashiko Mending
  2. Place the fabric nicely and comfortably.
  3. Enjoy Sashiko Stitching
  4. Make sure the fabric is nicely attached & keep enjoying the Sashiko Stitching.

 

Workshop of Basic Sashiko Denim Mending.

We proudly offer our first Sashiko workshop to work “Basic Sashiko Denim Mending” with you in 70 minutes. Atsushi will explain the basic of Sashiko history and will work with you as he worked in the video above. The participants will receive all of the supplies they would need to enjoy the basic Sashiko Denim Mending and the follow-up to keep enjoying it.

 

The workshop is offered as the part of pop-up, 75 Collective in NYC.

75 COLLECTIVE x Sashiko Workshop

 

Make sure to register your seats for the workshop:

A hint of Sashiko Denim Workshop 

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/hint-of-sashiko-denim-workshop-1-hours-short-sashiko-workshop-75-collective-tickets-52975487108

 

In order to maximize your Sashiko

The sample work of Basic Sashiko Denim Mending took about 50 minutes to complete, from cutting the fabric to the whole stitching. The core enjoyment of Sashiko is its rhythm and needle movement. Sashiko is all about hand-stitching, but it isn’t about making one perfect stitch. It is about making fabric repurposed.

 

In order to experience the whole picture of Sashiko, please consider participating in the Full-Length Sashiko Workshop, so-called Sashiko Stitching Workshop (Core & Basic).

 

Information & Tutorials Available Online

The joining the workshop & getting the instruction from Atsushi directly is the best way to enjoy Sashiko & Denim Mending. However, we understand that not everyone can travel to NYC for the workshop.

I will keep updating the website with more information & tutorials like below.

Sashiko Mending Tutorials | Upcycle and Repurpose

 

Your support would be very much appreciated. The best support is to spread the words that Upcycle Stitches is here to support anyone’s Sashiko. The next thing would be supporting me throughout being patron through web service (Being a Sashiko Patron).

 

Thank you & Enjoy Sashiko.

Sashiko Jacket 2018 SJ Cover

Back Order Sashiko Jacket 2018 SJ

We. as Sashi,Co & Keiko Futatsuya as well as Upcycle Stitches, make several Sashiko Jackets (or Sashiko Coats) per year when Keiko and/or Atsushi get some ideas that we would like to make it happen. Simultaneously, we are often open to accept the Back Orders Sashiko Jacket based on the client’s request. The whole process takes about a year to complete. However, we will listen to you and make your dream happen by starting with collecting the most appropriate vintage fabric. Of course, we will perform our Sashiko stitching on the jacket.

It is our pleasure to make the “one of a kind” Sashiko Jackets with listening to the client’s preference. We had a great opportunity in 2018 as well, and I would like to share the beautiful achievement with the client, Back Order Sashiko Jacket 2018 SJ.

 

A story of the Sashiko Jacket 2018 SJ

In January 2018, a gentleman contacted me if one specific type of Jacket, which I had introduced on the website, was still available for sale. Interestingly, the inquired jacket was just sold 2 days before his inquiry. We decided to offer the option to customize the Jacket with the preference of their choice.

 

The clients provided us their preference of the favorite Sashiko patterns, types of vintage fabric such as Katazome or Kasuri, and overall taste they had in their mind.

After listening to the preferences and image of the clients, it is our job to understand and visualize them in our mind with communicating the fabric. It is almost impossible to make the exactly the same thing as the client is imagining in their mind. Our job is to exceed their expectation by creating something “Wow” with following their preference and expectation.

 

When the backorder is assigned to Keiko after the listening phase, it is Keiko’s world until it gets completed.

 

How the “Back Order” works

 

Please contact Atsushi to tell us that you are interested in placing the back order.

Then, Atsushi will get back to you with specific questions such as the following:

  • The sizing | Possibly the photo of the client
  • Sashiko Pattern Preference
  • Vintage Fabric / Japanese Fabric Preferences

Based on the project, we may ask you for the additional notes. The more information we have in the initial stage, the better the outcome can be. Once Keiko starts her project, she doesn’t change her blueprint. She has the “Completed Image” in her mind when she starts, so we would ask you to provide all the possible information before that.

 

Pricing and Expectation

The price for the Back Order is about $5,000.00 USD per Jacket.

For making the similar item of Sashiko Jacket 2018 SJ, the rough estimate is about 4,880.00 USD per Jacket.

The price varies based on the types of vintage fabric you prefer, the amount & pattern of Sashiko stitching, the sizing, and also the exchange rate for the JPY=USD. We used to provide the cheaper price, but the vintage fabric in Japan is getting so expensive. We hope the vintage fabric will not be more expensive than as is now (which is super expensive for my sense…)

 

Once we all agreed to the preference and pricing, we will give you the rough estimate of delivery. It usually takes about 10 months to 15 months, and based on the preference, it could be longer than that.

 

You may have a question of how we make a transaction.

We will NOT ask for the deposit and will NOT ask you to promise us to purchase it after the completion (although please be serious in placing the order.) It is our responsibility to exceed your expectation, and we will do everything to make it happen. At the same time, once Keiko starts creating the one, she doesn’t share any progress updates. This is to avoid the third party voice to her creation. Trust me. It is much better when she is completely free from any requests and responses. She will follow the initial preference and will talk to the fabric, thread, and probably the clients non-verbally throughout her process.

Because of this Keiko’s production style (some people call it like an artist), she often make 2 pieces based on the same preference, just in case one is not following (or exceeding) the client’s expectation. The process time of 10 months to 15 months are for making 2 or more items for the one backorder request.

 

 

Photos of the Sashiko Jacket 2018 SJ

With the generous understanding from the client, we are happy to share some of the photos of these exclusive Sashiko Jackets. The clients will send me more photos from their days, which is the most important for us because we believe that Sashiko exists in the ordinary days & when it is been used instead of behind the glass showcase.

 

Enjoy the beautiful Photos.

 

*Please understand that I am not criticizing the museum quality Boro or Sashiko Jackets. There are reasons that they have to be displayed behind the glass. They could be fragile. We are simply proud of ourselves that we can “make” the museum quality Sashiko Jacket from one piece of fabric.


Photos from the Client

Sashiko Jacket 2018 SJ From J

 

Sashiko Jacket 2018 SJ From J2

 

 


Sashiko Jacket 2018 SJ _MN

Sashiko Jacket 2018 SJ _MN 2 Sashiko Jacket 2018 SJ _MN 1 Sashiko Jacket 2018 SJ _MN 3


Sashiko Jacket 2018 SJ _FO

Sashiko Jacket 2018 SJ 3 Sashiko Jacket 2018 SJ 2 Sashiko Jacket 2018 SJ 1

 


 

Sashiko with Keiko Futatsuya

It was such a wonderful 10 days enjoying Sashiko with Keiko Futatsuya. She had traveled from Japan between November 14th to 25th to supervise Atsushi’s Sashiko Workshop as well as to help more Sashiko production in the USA. With stitching Sashiko together with her, I remember the origin of our Sashiko, which is “caring” and stitching for someone.

 

Sashiko with Keiko Futatsuya

Surprisingly, it was my first time to enjoy Sashiko with Keiko Futatsuya. After all of these years with Sashiko, interestingly, we sit down together and enjoyed Sashiko stitching for the first time in 30 years.

 

Before my father passed away, Keiko and I worked for him in a company that provide Sashiko items and supplies. My father was the president of the company, and I was the head of sales, and my mother took care of many kinds of administrative works. In between those tasks, of course, we Sashiko stitched. Since I found out how talented Keiko is after seeing her artworks, I had asked her to focus on Sashiko works more than other daily tasks. I tried to help her by me doing these tasks, and she created very beautiful Sashiko pieces even before 2013.

 

Regardless, we didn’t have chance to sit down together and share the moment with Sashiko stitching when we were working for the company.

 

After my father had passed away, we rarely see each other. I haven’t been back to Japan for 5 years, and it was her 2nd visit after the one in 2016.

 

So, it was a privilege to share the Thanksgiving holiday with her stitching and talking over thread and fabric. I believe, it is the origin of Sashiko. Talking and stitching together with enjoyment (or sometimes, it could be some negative feelings).

 

 

Sashiko with Keiko Futatsuya

 

 

Enjoy Sashiko, as simple as that

 

What makes Keiko so talented?

You will find the answer if you have a chance to look at & touch her Sashiko achievement, but this is my quick summary.

 

[Her enjoyment of Sashiko makes her Sashiko so different from the others]

 

I believe I am good at Sashiko stitching. However, there is a huge gap between my works and Keiiko’s work. Please do not misunderstand that it isn’t about good or bad. It is about the preferences, and some people may say that they like my Sashiko items better. However, “I” feel that there is a big, and almost impossible to fill, gap between her work and mine, which is the “Enjoying Sashiko”.

 

I enjoy Sashiko, of course.

At the same time, I also enjoy sharing Sashiko to the others. In other words, I feel so happy when I see my students’ great achievement, and purely happy for them.

 

Keiko also enjoyed the other’s achievements and got so much inspired. You know what my mother said when she saw some of my student’s great achievement?

She said:

 

“I am so jealous of them. I would like to see what I can do after seeing their works”

Then, right after we come back from NYC, she started the Boro project like below.

 

I don’t know anyone else who is enjoying Sashiko more than Keiko. Enjoy Sashiko. As simple as this.

I am perfectly happy with me introducing her enjoyment, the Sashiko with Keiko Futatsuya.

 

Enjoy Sashiko with Keiko Futatsuya

Not only the Sashiko technique

 

Sashiko is merely a form of stitching the Japanese used to practice in their ordinary days. Ultimately speaking, the name of Sashiko is for the stitching only.

However, what I would like to share throughout Sashiko is not only the techniques but the mindset, culture, and the enjoyment I described above.

 

After offering many workshop in NYC starting 2 years go, I now have confidence that “I can give you the eye opening experience in the Sashiko workshop.” 

 

I have this website for the articles, Youtube Channel for the video Tutorials and LiveStreaming, and Instagram & facebook for sharing photos. My goal is to share the Sashiko as a whole, not only the stitching but also the Japanese culture which could be a hint to ease some of the struggle we have in the current society.

 

I also offer the Sashiko workshops to share everything I have → Sashiko Stitching Workshop (Core & Basic)

It is the best way to connect me and understand the core technique and wisdom of Sashiko.

 

 

 

Well…. It was a great, eventful, and super exciting Thanksgiving week, enjoying Sashiko with Keiko Futatsuya.

I will keep working hard so that I can invite her again to do another great visit, and next time, sharing Sashiko with Keiko Futatsuya & You.

 

Enjoy with Keiko Futatsuya Jacket

 

75 COLLECTIVE x Sashiko Cover

75 COLLECTIVE x Sashiko Workshop

It is my honor to be a part of the great event in December, in TriBeCa area organized by my dear friend, Matt Aprile from Indi. I am so happy to announce our participation to 75 COLLECTIVE x Sashiko Workshop. Atsushi will be offering the Sashiko Stitching Workshop (Core and Basic) as well as a short-version workshop.

 

75 COLLECTIVE x Sashiko

 

 

75 COLLECTIVE x Sashiko

 

Sashiko Workshop Schedule

The exact location will be notified directly to your email address from our email address (info ● sashico.com) after your registration. All of the materials are included in the registration fee. No experiences in Sashiko is required. Simply bring your passion and interest and learn the authentic culture of Sashiko stitching.

 

Atsushi has been teaching Sashiko in NYC every 2 months or so.

Offering the workshop to more than 70 participants, we are confident that we can provide the eye-opening and satisfying workshop for you. Since Atsushi does not live in NYC, our schedule is not periodic. As of now, we do not have any plans for 2019. Please take this opportunity to celebrate the Holidays together. Winter is a great time to enjoy Sashiko.

Please read the workshop description here to understand “what you can expect from Sashiko Stitching Workshop (Core & Basic)”

 

Sashiko Stitching Workshop (Core & Basic)

This is the well-reviewed and well-organized Sashiko workshop that the participant can learn everything she/he needs to start enjoying the Sashiko.

 

Dec 8th Saturday

  • 9:30 am to 12:30: 2nd-floor Studio
  • 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm:2nd-floor Studio

Dec 9th Sunday

  • 1 pm to 5 pm: 2nd-floor Studio| A bit bigger group and longer, but the same contents.

 

75 COLLECTIVE x Sashiko Fukin 75 COLLECTIVE x Sashiko Hariyama

 

Sashiko Denim Preview Workshop

 

*This is a first time offer designed for 75 COLLECTIVE x Sashiko.

Available Date:

  • Saturday, December 8th, 1:20 pm to 2:30 pm | about 1 hour
  • Sunday, December 8th, 10 am to 11:10 pm | about 1 hour

 

What you can expect from Short-Term Workshop

With provided material, you will learn how to transfer or draw the basic pattern of Japanese traditional geometric pattern to the Denim Swatch. Then, Atsushi will share how you can patch the swatch to your favorite Denim. It is a very quick introduction of Sashiko & the process of applying Sashiko to the denim

Please bring your own denim with a hole or tear. You may bring the Denim without any hole or tear, but the denim with more damage would be fun to work with.

 

*I believe, in order to learn the core technique and culture of Sashiko, anyone would need at least 2 hours of actual stitching. If you are interested in Sashiko, please consider taking the Sashiko Stitching Workshop (Core & Basic). We will not disappoint you if Sashiko Stitching interest and inspire you.

 

 

75 COLLECTIVE Participants

 

Please see a list of all the founders who will be joining us below, I have also linked each name to the respective websites. I am so honored to meet all of these brands’ founders. I am a Sashiko professional, but I have a lot to learn for branding Upcycle Stitches in the USA.

 

Event Details:

 

WHO:

75 COLLECTIVE

WHAT:

a collective of global brands

who care about how our clothes are made

and the people who make them

WHERE:

75 MURRAY ST, 1st Fl

New York, NY 10007

WHEN:

12/1-2 from 10am to 6pm

12/8-9 from 10am to 6pm

THE EVENT

We are creating a space where established and emerging conscious clothing brands can gather together to build community and exhibit their work, work bound by the thread of artisanal and handcrafted tradition and heritage.


we are:

STUDIO 189
KORRA JEANS
11.11 eleven eleven
indi
blluemade
POST-IMPERIAL
SANNGA
KORDAL STUDIO

with workshops offered by

Upcycle Stitches (75 COLLECTIVE x Sashiko)

RIGG
indi

with food & beverages by:

MAI SHIOYAMA

In our eyes the future of the fashion industry has the potential to be a bright one; one that supports the people who actually produce the clothing, the artisans responsible for the crafts that inform the clothing, and the communities around which the clothes are built through sustainable production practices.

We will be offering workshops so you can experience the traditions and crafts integral to many of our brands. Sign-up for the workshops here

instagram: @the75collective

Enjoy Sashiko in Happy Holidays

Enjoy Sashiko in Happy Holidays

Leaves on trees get colored then fall down. We expect the snow soon and we kind of stay inside more in North East of the USA. It is the best time to sit and stitch. I am happy to announce that the great Fashion designer, Indi Kids, will have me for their wonderful event in December. The Sashiko Stitching Workshop (Core & Basic) will be available on December 8th and 9th. I hope you can find the time for your busy yet fun season. Enjoy Sashiko in Happy Holidays.

 

The Detail of Indi Kid Event

 

Sashiko Workshop Schedule

The detail of the workshop can be found on the workshop registration page.

 

  • Dec. 8th, Saturday, 9:30 am to around 1 pm for 3 hours + α | 

or

  • Dec. 8th, Saturday, 3 pm to around 6:30 pm for 3 hours + α |

or

  • Dec. 9th, Saturday, 1 pm to around 5:30 pm for 4 hours + α (Bigger Group)| 

 

I hope to meet you & see you there.

Since this is a day-long event, we are brainstorming the other workshops/offers we can make. Keep eye on our newsletter so you will not miss the information.

 

Enjoy Sashiko in Happy Holidays

Holidays can be pretty busy, too.

At the same time, you may have some time off from your routine days. I hope you will find some time to reward yourself by enjoying Sashiko. Sashiko can be very relaxing, meditative, and mindfull.

 

Sashiko makes great Gift

Enjoy Sashiko in Happy Holidays

 

 

One of the workshop participants who took the Sashiko Stitching Workshop in September shared her beautiful result. By learning Sashiko basic and core, you can make this kind of Tote bag and keep enjoying your own Sashiko projects. There aren’t many techniques you need to master to maximize the Sashiko experience. However, there is some eye-opening technique that I would like to share to enrich your Sashiko project. We hope that all of us enjoy Sashiko in Happy Holidays.

 

 

 

Top 5 Sashiko Tips Cover R

Top 5 Sashiko Tips | Common Misunderstanding

Sashiko is a form of simple hand stitching developed in Japan. It is relatively easy to start, and we can keep enjoying its meditative stitching in various way. Here is top 5 Sashiko Tips to make your Sashiko experience much more comfortable and your Sashiko stitching results more beautiful.

 

  1. Get Sashiko Thread | Not a thread even with the same thickness
  2. Get the needle to minimize the stress
  3. Don’t pull the needle. Pull the fabric
  4. Make sure to smooth the fabric after stitching
  5. Push the needle instead of making a stitch | Sashiko isn’t about making a stitch

 

Top 5 Sashiko Tips Details

 

These top 5 Sashiko tips are based on our 30+ years of experience in Sashiko stitching. Please understand it is not about being right or wrong, or good or bad. The purpose of this blog is to share the tips, not to judge others or yourself.

 

I cover every Top 5 Sashiko Tips in the Sashiko Stitching Workshop I offer. You may learn the brief summary of these tips here. Enjoy Sashiko!

 

1. A reason to call it Sashiko Thread

(Get Sashiko Thread | Not a thread even with the same thickness.)

 

Sashiko thread isn’t defined as Sashiko Thread only by the thickness. The trick is “how the thread is twisted” to form the yarn. Sashiko has a various and different purpose in comparison to the other hand-sewing project. For example, making Kimono requires a completely different thread so-called sewing thread instead of Sashiko Thread.

Any kinds of the thread may make good stitching. However, when you would like to enjoy the whole benefit (original purpose) of Sashiko stitching, we strongly recommend using the Sashiko Thread even if you have the same thickness thread.

 

*More information about the Purpose of threads is in this blog post.

Why Sashiko Thread | Compare to the other

 

2. Needle matters

(Get the needle to minimize the stress.)

 

The selection for the needle is very huge. The cheapest needle can be found by less than a dollar or even less, and the expensive one can be $3~4 dollar a piece (possibly more). For the purpose of regular hand-sewing, any kinds of the needle would work. However, for the better experience of Sashiko stitching, I strongly recommend getting the needle for Sashiko Stitching.

A few topics to consider are below.

  • The length. My favorite length is 51.5 mm.
  • An appropriate size of the needle eye. The big eye may destroy the fabric.
  • The good snap of the needle

Here is my recommendation for the Sashiko Needle

 

*I have heard that some people sharpen the needle with the small cushion attach to the pincushion in the market. If you purchase the Sashiko Needle from us, DO NOT sharpen your needle unless you feel the dullness of the needle in stitching. The needle is sharpened nicely by professional in the original condition. The process of sharping the needle by yourself will, in fact, make the needle dull. If you enjoy Sashiko stitching a few hours every day for a few months, you may feel the dullness of the needle, then you may use the needle sharpener. At the same time, it can be a good time to change the needle after using that heavily.

 

3. Pull the fabric, not the needle

When you make numbers of stitches, it can be challenging to pull the needle through the fabric.

The needle is pretty thin, and the thread is pretty thick. The size of the needle and the thread is to avoid destroying the fabric. However, it is a bit more challenging to pull the needle with the thread. There is an eye-opening hint for this. Don’t pull the needle.

 

To minimize the difficulty, keep this one thing in your mind.

Pull the fabric instead of pulling the needle.

 

*It is difficult to explain in writing. Please check the video I made.

 

4. Smoothe the fabric

After making numbers of stitches and pull the needle through, you must make sure to smoothe the fabric. This process is called “Itokoki (=糸こき)” in Japanese. By Itokoki, the thread and fabric match better and avoid the tension on the fabric. Without this process, the fabric may be tensioned or twisted in an unlikable way.

Even I, as the Sashiko professional, I occasionally experience the insufficient Itokoki. To avoid it, I often make loops when I change the stitching direction to avoid the unlikable mistake (like an insurance). → The article about Why Loops?

Why loops in Sashiko Running Stitching

 

*It is also difficult to explain Itokoki in writing. Please check the video I made.

 

5. Learn how to push the needle

Sashiko isn’t about making one stitch. It is a movement of the needle to achieve purpose such as repairing, mending, and strengthening the fabric. It is the core of Sashiko to learning how to push the needle with the thimble.

 

We found that teaching  (& sharing) how to use the thimble and move the needle is quite difficult even with videos. The goal is to share the appropriate method, posture, and movement of the needle with the thimble with us continuously checking your stitching. We would like to make sure the participants understand and master the movement instead of sharing information and spreading the movement we do not intend to. Please consider taking Atsushi’s workshop in NYC or Online Sashiko Workshop.

*The free tutorials are available on our Youtube Channel for those who prefer that way.

 

 

 


 

I hope you enjoyed this blog post of Top 5 Sashiko Tips.

As I keep mentioning on this website, I believe there isn’t such a thing as “Right Sashiko” and “Wrong Sashiko”. However, there are numbers of tips, techniques, and wisdom that we would like to share to pass down Sashiko. Please share your questions in Comments so I can follow up with more information.

 

While writing this article, I realize it is quite difficult to share the points just in writing with considering my English ability as the second language. Please enjoy the quick video I made to explain the Top 5 Sashiko Tips

 

 

 

+++++ The script of Youtube just in case my English is difficult to understand

Hello, this is Atsushi. Thank you for watching the Top 5 Sashiko Tips video.
I am happy that many people would like to learn how to do Sashiko beautifully and efficiently. Here are the Top 5 Sashiko Tips to make your Sashiko experience more enjoyable.

1. Get Sashiko Thread.
You may use any kinds of thread for the Sashiko project. However, if you would like to get the same result as we do, then, using the thread designed for the Sashiko purpose is necessary. I had written several articles about the difference of Sashiko thread and the other threads on our website, upcyclestitches.com. The main difference is the twist. The Sashiko Thread has the unique twist to be the part of the fabric. The main purpose of Sashiko thread isn’t connecting a few pieces of fabric together, it is to make the fabric stronger.

2. Sashiko Needle
A good quality Sashiko needle can improve the Sashiko stitching by A LOT. My recommendation is.

A. The length of 51.5 mm
B. The small eye to avoid destroying the fabric, yet big enough to accommodate the Sashiko Thread.

Trust me. It is significant.

3. Pull the fabric, not the needle

After making many stitches, you may experience the difficulty to pull the needle through the fabric with the thread. It is understandable because the Sashiko thread we use is pretty thick and the needle eye is quite small.

Here is a tip.
Do not pull the needle. Yes. It sounds strange. You will pull the needle eventually. However, first, try to pull the fabric to get the needle eye through as the video shows. This is one of the reasons I made this video on top of the actual blog post on my website. I hope you get what I am talking about by watching how I do it.

4, The movement of smoothing the fabric.

In my Sashiko workshop, I always tell them to smooth the fabric.
I came to realize that I am not 100% sure if I translated the meaning of words from Japanese to English. Since I cannot find the exact word for that, I will use the Japanese for this movement. It is called “Itokoki.”

Itokoki is the movement of smoothing the fabric to avoid the tensioned fabric like the video shows. It will make your fabric more smooth and beautiful.

5. Unshin

In my opinion, Sashiko is not about making one stitch. Sashiko is about moving the needle, and as the result, making the numbers of stitches. To follow what the Japanese used to practice, understanding and learning the needle movement is important. In Japanese, we call the needle movement, Unshin.

We do Unshin and make numbers of stitches, then make sure that fabric is smooth by doing Itokoki. We repeat the process and create a simple, yet beautiful pattern.

Alright.
Let’s review Top 5 Sashiko Tips

Getting good Sashiko thread and needle is pretty critical to have the good Sashiko stitching. As I have shared in another video on this channel, the fabric quality is not as significant as the thread and needle. Of course, I prefer the fabric made in Japan following the traditional way. However, a piece of the swatch from Walmart for a couple of bucks was okay for the Sashiko stitching. When the budget is limited, I would allocate more resources for the thread and needle.

This video is for the 3rd and 4th tips in the list of Top 5 Sashiko Tips. In order to explain what Itokoki and how to pull the fabric, I thought it is the best to film myself.

Interestingly, Sashiko is so natural to me and my mother.
So sometimes, we do not realize that something we do very naturally is the answer to someone who started Sashiko stitching.

In fact, the Japanese have an interesting craftmanship that master does not teach how to do the crafting. The students, pupils, or apprentices are supposed to learn by just looking and observing what the master does. So, I didn’t get a structured “lesson” or “workshop”. What I do is something I learned by doing and looking, and therefore, sometimes I do not realize what I do is special to someone.

So feel free to ask the questions. Your question may teach me what the audience is looking for as the answer.
However, please check this channel and our website first to look for the answers. I have been answering many questions, and the common questions are probably answered already.

Well, I will improve my website so viewers can find the answers more easily. But, let me have more time for that.

Alright.
Enjoy Sashiko.

Why Sashiko Thread Cover

Why Sashiko Thread | Compare to the other

In the Instagram Sashiko Live-Streaming (in Japanese), we had a great talk about the reasons to use Sashiko thread instead of other types of thread and yarns. There is a reason why Sashiko thread is different from the other thread.

Sashiko was developed in the necessity to survive through the severe winter in Japan. In order to satisfy the Sashiko’s original purpose, the Japanese have been spending a lot of time to create the appropriate Sashiko thread for the project. I hope you enjoy the beauty of its Sashiko Thread.

 

View a Story of Sashiko Thread by Atsushi

 

The script of Atsushi’s Story is available at the end of this article.


Shop Sashiko Thread in Upcycle Stitches

 

Why Sashiko Thread Comparison

 

The twist is why Sashiko Thread is unique

The Sashiko Thread we carry has the unique twist. Most of our Sashiko threads consists of 4 thin embroidery floss, and they are twisted in a very unique way. This twist makes it thread as the Sashiko Thread, and it is the reason why Sashiko thread can make beautiful Sashiko stitches.

 

In the market, you may find the similar thread/yarn with the similar thickness. I have read some articles talking about the alternative of Sashiko Thread. Please do not misunderstand that I am NOT saying the alternative is bad or wrong. Based on the type of project, I use the non-Sashiko Thread to maximize the purpose. What I would like to share is the background story of why Sashiko Threads have been used by so many Sashiko practitioners.

 

Thread as a method to strengthen the fabric

As you may have learned in this website, Sashiko original has (had) a goal to achieve: to strengthen or to mend the fabric.

 

Usually, the sewing thread is used to “patch” or “connect” 2 or more fabric together. In order to make a dress, the seamstress needs to sew the patterned fabrics together to form the dress. The threads have to be strong enough to hold them together. Therefore, the regular sewing threads have a very tight twist. Regardless of the thickness, most of the non-Sashiko thread has the tight twist to serve its purpose.

 

The main purpose of Sashiko Thread is NOT to patch or connect the fabric. It is to make the fabric stronger. In other words, the Japanese wanted Sashiko Thread to be the part of fabric eventually. Therefore, Sashiko thread has uniquely designed “soft” twist. By this unique twist, the thread becomes part of the fabric over time, and therefore the fabric gets stronger before the Sashiko Stitching.

Why Sashiko Thread Tickness

 

It is not about good or bad.

The point is what is the purpose (goal) of using the thread you have. If you would like to follow the original Sashiko & make fabric stronger with beautiful patterns, we strongly recommend using our Sashiko Thread. The tightly twisted thread tend to stay as the thread over time, and sometimes, the tightness may damage the fabric.

 

Making a Knot of not

The topic either making a know or not in Sashiko stitching can be a pretty big discussion sometimes. I have written the blog post about “How to NOT to make the knot” along to the Youtube Video.

Yes, I share the technique. However, without understanding the reason why Sashiko Thread is so different with its background story, the technique wouldn’t work at all. If you use the tightly twisted sewing thread, you would need the knot. I always make a knot when I use non-Sashiko Thread. It simply doesn’t work because of the character of the thread: which is the purpose of the thread.

 

I hope this blog post explains the reason why Sashiko Thread is different from the stories behind it.

 


 

Sashiko Story Vol.3

Welcome to Sashiko Story Volume 3. Below is the script of the video

 

 

Today, I would like to talk about the thread for Sashiko. I know. It is pretty hot topic, especially if you are looking for the “correct answers” for Sashiko stitching.

 

As you can imagine, this is one of the frequent questions I receive.

“What kind of Sashiko thread is the best for my Sashiko Project?”

 

The answer is pretty simple. It is about your preferences and the purpose of your project. I am so sorry for disappointing you by not providing the solid answer… but it is really up to your preference.  However, to help you to find the best Sashiko thread, here is a Sashiko Story.

 

  1. Understanding the purpose of Sashiko.

 

The main (and original) purpose of Sashiko is a bit different from the other types of hand-stitching. It is to make the fabric stronger and during instead of patching or connecting two fabrics so-called patchworking or tailoring.

 

Let’s say, in order to make a dress, we need a tightly twisted thread, which tends to be firm and thin. A sewing machine also use this kind of tight and thin thread to make good sewing stitches. For that, We do not want the thread to be frayed or loosen at all when a person wears the dress. Also, when the thread is old and weak enough, it should be easy to be cut off for the repair.

 

The main purpose of Sashiko thread, instead, is to be the part of the fabric, yet not completely frayed over time. Therefore, the Sashiko thread has the unique twist to keep the stitches beautiful (not frayed) yet soft enough to merge into the fabric over time.

 

A good Sashiko pieces, including some of the nice Boro pieces, has the pattern as if they are not “stitched”. It is the beauty of Sashiko thread to alter itself to be the part of the fabric.

Also, the tight twist of the thread is sometimes too strong for the vintage fabric. Instead of being a part of the fabric, the thread could just tear the fabric. We avoid using the tight sewing thread for mending Boro like this.

 

So, you may want to make sure what is your purpose of Sashiko stitching. If you are mending denim with denim patch without caring the pattern, any kinds of threads would be just fine. However, if you would like to have good looking Sashiko stitches to make fabric stronger, then get the thread designed for Sashiko.

 

  1. How do you want to age your thread?

 

The color is very much up to your preferences. In our online store, UpcycleStitches.com, we have more than 50 colors available to choose from.

 

I personally prefer the natural dye Sashiko thread because we work on a lot of Japanese vintage fabric. The beauty of vintage fabric is the color created by the time passing, aging. In order to match the color of vintage fabric which the time created, the natural dye is the best choice: the synthetic dye can be too strong in contrast to the soft and aged vintage color. Another great point of using the natural dye is that the thread also changes colors over time. The beauty of fading color together, vintage fabric and natural dye thread, with integrating each other because of the unique twist is the most important concept for our Sashiko project. We believe the beauty of Boro is there as well.

 

The quality of synthetic dye Sashiko thread is as good as the natural dyes. It is just the difference of colors and dye materials.

 

All of those said I recommend the thread satisfying these following qualifications.

 

  1. Cotton 100%. The better cotton it is, the better thread will be.
  2. A unique twist of Sashiko Thread. You gotta find the best twist you would like by experimenting.
  3. How much it gets frayed over stitching. Not too much being frayed. I do not like the frayed thread. However, not too tight to avoid any damage to the fabric as well as enjoying the Sashiko result.

 

The Sashiko thread we sell to in the USA as well as worldwide is satisfying all of the qualifications I mentioned. We sell them simply because we like them. We use them on a daily basis and we are confident that the customers will be happy with the quality. Also, we can share some techniques and wisdom by providing exactly the same Sashiko thread as we use.

 

Oh, I almost forgot to mention that.

All of the tutorials I share on Youtube and my website is based on the fact that the viewers are using the same supplies and tools. For example, Kasane (The overlay stitching to not to make the knot) may not work with non-Sashiko Thread. I can assist you if you have a problem with that technique in using our thread, but if you are using other brand thread, the first thing you can try is to switch the supply. It may be the thread not doing the job instead of you doing the overlay stitching in wrong way.

 

Japan Society NYC x Sashiko Workshop

Japan Society NYC x Sashiko Workshop | follow Up

Thank you very much for being a part of a great evening, Japan Society NYC x Sashiko Workshop by Atsushi Futatsuya. It is our very first challenge to share Sashiko stitching to so many people. We usually have a workshop for the size of 6 to 12 participants… so yes, it was something great for me. I hope you had received a message for my passion of Sashiko, and introductory technique of beautiful Sashiko stitching.

For those who signed up with your email for the follow-up email, please expect to receive the email from Atsushi by 10/5. If you do not receive anything from Atsushi, the email may be in your spam box, or I misread the email itself. In that case, please contact me from here.

 

Missed Japan Society NYC x Sashiko Workshop ?

 

I have received several emails that they, unfortunately, couldn’t participate in this Japan Society NYC x Sashiko Workshop.

Do not worry. With increasing of the demand, I am planning to have another Online Sashiko Workshop (Core & Basic) as well as creating a downloadable video of “how to make Sashiko Coaster” which I covered in this Sashiko Workshop at Japan Society NYC.

In order to accomplish my goal, I still feel that “On Live Workshop” is a necessary step to teach how to do Sashiko with the specific thimble and the Sashiko needle. I understand that the needs for “Video – which you can watch and learn anytime” is huge. However, the key to learning the appropriate posture is me continuously checking (not judging) your posture and position of needle and thimble.

If you are interested in this Live – Small grouped Online Workshop, please fill out the form below. Once I find the similar preference and request, I will contact you to set up the workshop.

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSf_FhpQGLrkh1wZInl4e-uz_uu0GDJrQKPG952TR2UYL_XB7g/viewform?usp=sf_link

 

 

Sashiko is not about being Right or Wrong

 

I hope I delivered this message in the workshop: There is no such a thing as Right Sashiko and Wrong Sashiko. Meanwhile, I make another video of how to make the coaster, and/or how to do Sashiko, please watch other “Live Streaming” and previous Tutorials on our Youtube Channel. Try to learn what you would like to learn. It is not a rule or regulations you need to follow. I simply share the technique and concept which may enrich your Sashiko experience.

I will also keep sharing “Stories” about Sashiko. The subscribers of the channel made me realize that “I have a lot of stories to tell.”

 

 

 

Following Sashiko Workshop

Upcycle Stitches LLC offers “Sashiko Stitching Workshop (Core & Basic)” with collaborating to respected organizations which share the similar concepts and values. Since “introducing Sashiko” is my current goal, most of the workshop I offer in 2018 are the basic and core workshop.

 

In Sashiko Stitching Workshop (Core & Basic), I cover the similar materials to the introductory workshop at Japan Society.

I will teach:

  • How to use the thimble and the needle
  • How to move the needle and making Sashiko running stitches
  • Using the similar Asano-ha pattern to make a tote bag (I do not teach how to make a tote bag.)
  • Introductory of Sashiko & its concept

Sashiko Workshop Tote

The biggest difference is that I will make sure that the participant “get comfortable to” the running stitch including how to hold the needle, fabric, and using the thimble. I will stand next to the participant, touch her/his hands if necessary, reposition the hands and posture. I will not give up even the participant gives up. From my experience, it takes about 2~3 hours to get used to the Sashiko running stitch.

If you aren’t 100% sure how to use the thimble and needle, these basic & core workshops should be a great workshop to make sure what you have learned. The class size is about 6 to 9. A lot of individual attention for every participant in the workshop.
Also, I will cover the following:
  • How to prepare the fabric (transferring patterns / how to draw patterns)
  • Sashiko running stitch with rhythm.
  • What kind of materials are the best
  • Upcycling the fabric with Sashiko | Especially with Eileen Fisher garment if you have one
  • Difference between Sashik0 and Boro | which I covered a bit in Japan Society Workshop.
  • How to stitch different patterns | brief explanation.
  • Unlimited questions within 4 hours and you will get enough answers because of the class size of 9 maximum.
If the participant is comfortable with using thimble and needle as I instructed at the introductory workshop, I can accept him/her for the advanced workshop AFTER checking his/her stitching over the video. Please send me a video of stitching so I can decide if you follow the instruction. However, unfortunately, without my permission after watching the video, the “introductory workshop” will not satisfy the prerequisite to the other (advanced) workshop I offer.  It is simply because I need to make sure that everyone is comfortable and understood how to use them when I do advanced workshops. I cannot confirm it in the introductory workshop because of the class size, so the person would need to show me if they got the information appropriately and practice it, or need to take the basic & core workshop to “master” the Sashiko Stitching.
I hope the explanation above is clear for the future Sashiko Workshops.
Sashiko Follow Up Cover JS

Sashiko Follow Up | For Sashiko Workshop Graduates

In 2018, I offer Sashiko Workshops in different locations by collaborating with honorable organizations and groups of beautiful people. If you have taken one of Atsushi’s Sashiko Workshops (Full Length of more than 3 hours – maybe named Core, Basic, and/or traditional), and have not received an email for the Sashiko Follow Up within 5 business days, please contact me from here. I will send you the Sashiko Follow Up email with many follow up materials accordingly.

If you haven’t received any emails within a few business days after the workshop, something went wrong on my side like a typo in the email address in such. For those who take the workshop in TriBeCa, organized and programmed by Upcycle Stitches, you should get the “Sashiko Follow Up email” the next day (or even the same day).

 

Thank you for coming to the Sashiko Workshop!

 

Sashiko Follow Up

The follow-up email consists of very useful information including one-time free shipping coupon. I want you to be informed. So please do not miss the opportunity if you have taken our full-length Sashiko Workshop.

If you are a graduate of “introductory Sashiko Workshop” like the one I offered at the Japan Society in September 2018, you will also receive the same follow-up emails with follow-up materials. However, please be advised that the these introductory Sashiko workshop will not fulfill the prerequisite for our advanced Workshops. We offer & run our advanced workshops based on the fact that every participant is capable of using the round-shape thimble and the Sashiko long needle.

To learn (master) more of Sashiko stitching, please consider taking in our full-length Sashiko Workshop.

Sashiko Stitching Workshop (Core & Basic)

Alternatively, you can send me a video of your Sashiko stitching so I may give you the qualification (fulfillment of prerequisite) prior to the other workshops. Please refer to this blog post to understand the difference between the Full-Time Sashiko Workshop & Introductory Sashiko WOrkshop.

 

We want you to continue Sashiko

 

As I mentioned in the workshop, my goal is to keep encouraging you to continue this enjoyable journey. A Sashiko follow up email is a great introduction & summary of what we had shared. I would love to be connected with you who learned not only the technique of Sashiko but also the appreciative culture behind it.

Keep in touch, and let me know if there is anything we can do for your Sashiko life.

 

 

Share your photos

Please share photos of your Sashiko accomplishment over the email. I would love to share the alumni’s work online so the new learner will learn what they can expect. Also, if you have photos from the workshop, please share them with me, too. As you may have noticed, I barely stop moving during the workshop. I always try to take photos and end up with forgetting about it. It would be very appreciated if you could share your good memory with me as well as the others who are interested in Sashiko.

For the Instagram, please use the hashtag of #azussashikoworkshop

 

 

See you soon online & somewhere in the world

 

It would be lovely to see you again, somewhere in the world, or simply online. I have an Instagram account and Youtube Channel, which both share some live-streaming. It is our sincere hope that you will continue the Sashiko stitching, or apply Sashiko stitching to your hand-stitching (hand-sewing) life.

 

Enjoy Sashiko!

Atsushi Futatsuya

 

Sashiko Asanoha Fukin Cover

Sashiko Asanoha Fukin | How to Sashiko in Order

Sashiko Fukin (刺し子ふきん)is one of the most popular Sashiko items in Japan. Fukin means a sampler or a dish-cloth. The Japanese use this square piece of white cloth to cover the food, wipe the dishes, and other many kitchen activities. Here is a sample of How to Sashiko Asanoha Fukin with video of me stitching and the photos of each step. There is no “right” way to proceed the stitching. It is merely a sample but would be useful when you work on the Sashiko Stitching with Asano-ha pattern.

 

 

Preparation |  Sashiko Asanoha Fukin

Sarashi (晒)is a Japanese thin cotton fabric. (I plan to have them in stock soon).

We prefer to make Sashiko with the double layers. After drawing (transferring) the pattern, secure the two layers with safety pins or such.

 

Sashiko Asanoha Fukin 1

 

Steps of How to Sashiko Asanoha Fukin

The core concept of making a good Sashiko Fukin is to have the “one-stroke” stitching. The optimal (the most efficient) way to stitch vary from a pattern to pattern.

 

Step.1 | Around of Sashiko Asanoha Fukin

Stitch around the corner. Then, the safety pins can be removed.

Sashiko Asanoha Fukin 0

 

Step.2 | Diagonal Lines

Find the longest line, which happens to be the diagonal lines. Enjoy running stitch without cutting the thread until the thread runs out.

 

Sashiko Asanoha Fukin 2

 

Use “Kasane” to continue.

 

Sashiko Asanoha Fukin 4

 

Step.3 | Small Zigzag Lines

After enjoying the long diagonal lines, then move to the small zigzag lines.

 

Step.4 | In-between Lines

Fill the leftovers with using Kasane.

Sashiko Asanoha Fukin 6

Sashiko Asanoha Fukin 5

 

Step Extra | Enjoy addition

The Fukin Project complete with the step.4

However, I decided to continue the process by adding another color to make the double stitches to enjoy the difference between dark Indigo & Light Indigo.

 

Sashiko Asanoha Fukin 7    

 

 

Join our community by taking our Workshops

Sashiko is a process of simple stitching. However, without proper basics, it could be confusing and difficult to enjoy. Upcycle Stitches LLC & Atsushi offer the Sashiko Workshop in NYC and Online. Please consider joining our community where you can learn not only how to stitch these beautiful Japanese geometric pattern but also connect to a community where people share the same great passion to Sashiko.

 

  1. Sashiko Stitching Workshops in NYC
  2. Sashiko Online Workshops 

 

Sashiko Workshops September 2018

 

Some of the tutorials are available online, Youtube.