Japanese Shima Kasuri

Japanese Shima Kasuri Textile for Sashiko

A pile of sample swatches of Japanese Shima (stripe) and Kasuri textile has arrived at the Upcycle Stitches. About 50 kinds of beautiful fabric made in Japan is available for sale and to be used in custom order. Some of them are not suitable for Sashiko. We will recommend the best fabric based on your preferences. I sincerely respect the manufacturers of Japanese Shima Kasuri Textile and I would like to continue using these beautiful fabrics as long as we can. The beautiful Japanese Shima fabric and Kasuri fabric with collaborating Sashiko stitching will make very unique, and beautiful house goods, such as coasters, placemats, and more. Even bags and jackets are available to made to order.

 

Sashiko Dinning Goods

*The photo shows the placemats and coasters made from Indigo Dye Fabric with Sashiko stitching

 

 

 

Indigo Dye, Shima Stripe, and Kasuri

When we enjoy Japanese traditional fabrics, we come across these keywords of Indigo Dye, Shima, and Kasuri. The Japanese cared what they wore in their unique fashion sense. Some of them were developed during the period when Japan closed its country border to the foreign countries. The era of National Isolation. We appreciate the hand-craft culture, and sincerely respect those who inheritance the technique and culture to continuously produce the great materials.

We are happy to introduce some of these beautiful fabrics to the world, with our proud technique and culture, Sashiko stitching.

 

 

All the samples of Japanese Shima Kasuri Textile

We have more than 50 kinds of fabric in form of small swatch.

As of now, we don’t share the most samples, but you are welcome to visit us to check the sample book. When we can build enough inventory, we will start providing the samples to retails shops/studios across the US. Although the sample is not available, the fabrics are available for sale. Please contact me for more detail. I will send you a PDF with photos of the sample and the price sheet.

*Some fabric is available for sale as well as sharing the samples.

Contact Atsushi in Upcycle Stitches 

 

 

Japanese Shima Kasuri 1 14 Japanese Shima Kasuri
13 Japanese Shima Kasuri 12 Japanese Shima Kasuri
11 Japanese Shima Kasuri  10 Japanese Shima Kasuri
8 Japanese Shima Kasuri 9 Japanese Shima Kasuri
7 Japanese Shima Kasuri 5 Japanese Shima Kasuri
2 Japanese Shima Kasuri 6 Japanese Shima Kasuri
4 Japanese Shima Kasuri 3 Japanese Shima Kasuri
27 Japanese Shima Kasuri 28 Japanese Shima Kasuri
28 Japanese Shima Kasuri 25 Japanese Shima Kasuri
23 Japanese Shima Kasuri 24 Japanese Shima Kasuri

 

24 Japanese Shima Kasuri 15 Japanese Shima Kasuri
18 Japanese Shima Kasuri 16 Japanese Shima Kasuri
19 Japanese Shima Kasuri 17 Japanese Shima Kasuri
20 Japanese Shima Kasuri 21 Japanese Shima Kasuri
Hand-Stitched Sashiko Jeans 12

Hand-Stitched Sashiko Jeans ~ ASANO-HA CO1

A challenge in 2017 of Modern Denim Fashion came out pretty good. It is still in the process of Sashiko, I thought of sharing the beautiful image of the progress. I received an interesting question if I am hand-stitching or not. Yes, everything is done by hand so it is genuine Hand-Stitched Sashiko Jeans. It took about 20 hours to complete the Asano-ha pattern. Here is a step by step image how used jeans turn out “one-of-a-kind” Sashiko Jeans.

Each process of Hand-Stitched Sashiko Jeans

Hand-Stitched Sashiko Jeans 1
New Denim is difficult to do Sashiko on. Pick a used jeans with soft fabric.

 

Hand-Stitched Sashiko Jeans 2
Try to stitch the straight line first. Think of efficiency.

 

 

Hand-Stitched Sashiko Jeans 223

 

 

Hand-Stitched Sashiko Jeans
The pattern started coming up. It is very rewarding time. Enjoying it.

 

Hand-Stitched Sashiko Jeans Final
After filling the final line, we can enjoy the beautiful Asano-ha pattern.

 

Time-consuming but very rewarding

Since it is hand-stitched, the process of making Sashiko stitching is very time-consuming. Some may say that using the machine would speed up the process and avoid the troubles of spending so much time. In fact, there is a sewing machine to make “Sashiko look stitches” available for sale in the market. However, I believe, the imperfectness of hand stitching make the pattern more beautiful. Even speaking of the speed, when we make a stitched to the tailored jeans or jackets, hand-stitching may be faster and efficient.

 

Hand-Stitched Sashiko Jeans 2233

My goal is to keep this culture and share the technique

As I keep mentioning in this website, my goal is to keep this Sashiko culture to the next generation by sharing the technique. At the same time, for those who are interested in wearing Sashiko jeans, I will restart accepting the order to perform Sashiko stitching on the customer’s garment. It is a time-consuming process, so I cannot take many orders… so sharing the technique is also very important to achieve my goal.

Hand-Stitched Sashiko Jeans 12

 

Regardless. Look at this photo. It is so cool and beautiful.

The hand-stitching with “recycle, upcycle, repurpose” concept in sustainability with Slow Fashion may be your choice. Repair it instead of replacing it. The recycle and sustainable fashion can be fashionable and cool.

 

 

Hand-Stitched Sashiko Jeans Marina

Modern Denim Fashion 2

Modern Denim Fashion with Japanese Sashiko

The word of Sashiko is getting popular in many industries, even in a field of fashion. As the Sashiko artist, I am happy that people get inspired by the image of Sashiko. Although some seem to misunderstand what Sashiko is, the spreading the concept of Sashiko matters first. As a part of my Sashiko challenge in 2017, I restarted practicing Sashiko on the denim fabric. I hope my sample pieces would influence the modern denim fashion, and contribute to the actual Sashiko culture, “the repurpose, appreciation to the fabric, and sustainability.”

*Please refer to the previous article regarding my understanding to Sashiko and its definition. 

 

The fabric lasting longer by rich stitching

Sashiko is a form of stitching to repair, mend, and strengthening the fabric. The famous Japanese vintage fabric “Boro” is the result of repeated Sashiko stitching. Sashiko is well-known for patching and mending the hole in the fabric and torn fabric. In the modern society, Sashiko transformed its concept a bit and now well-known for decorative stitching from Japan.

 

In my Modern Denim Fashion projects, I perform both stitching to strengthening the fabric and mending the torn fabric. The fabric gets much stronger by having so many rich stitching. When the fabric is stronger, the denim garment can last longer. The longer we can use the garment, the more appreciation we can have to the fabric.

Wouldn’t it be nice if the garment with Sashiko is even more beautiful (fashionable) with stitching?

Hand-Stitched Sashiko Jeans 223

 

The possibility in Sashiko with Modern Denim Fashion

Every stitch is done by hands… Therefore, I cannot produce many samples in the short period of time. However, I hope, these samples with Sashiko stitching will influence the modern denim fashion field and spread the concept of Sashiko. It is very difficult to change the mass-production and mass-consumption society. I do not intend to criticize this beneficial industry. In fact, I get to benefit from mass-production. I just would like to spread the concept of appreciation to the fabric, mending and repairing, and ultimately, “repairing it instead of replacing it.”

 

Modern Denim Fashion 23

 

 

Please wait for my update with more samples. I believe we can surprise the world.

 

*You can purchase the swatches of sashiko fabric to patch (stitch-on) to your garment instead of stitching directly. 

 

 

Sashiko White Thread Comparison 1

A Subtle difference in Sashiko White Thread

Indigo Dyed – dark blue fabric and white thread; it is the most popular fabric-thread combination for a long time. Even in modern society, Sashiko with the dark blue fabric and white thread is unique and beautiful. We have two kinds of Sashiko white thread; Original White (Ecru White) and Bright White (Bleached White).

 

Sashiko White Thread Difference
Above: Original White #10/ Below: Bright White #12

 

Comparison in Sashiko White Thread

The thread #10 Original White has an ecru color. In comparison, it is more like the cream color. The thread #12 Bright White is the snow-white color, and it is the white we think of when we say, white. #12 is the brighter white than #10. I named #10 Original White because #12 is dyed (bleached) to make the pure white color.

Both of them are the perfect thread for Sashiko stitching. The color you may choose is up to your preference. Here is a sample Sashiko fabric that I use both #10 and #12 on Indigo Dye Fabric. Interestingly, when you stitch the 2 Sashiko White Thread on the Indigo fabric, #10 looks also pure-white. We choose the thread color AFTER we find the fabric because the stitching on the fabric will decide which thread will result in the color we are imagining.

*This is the reason Sashi.Co & Keiko Futatsuya dye the thread by hands: to create the color we would like to have on top of 22 color selection.

 

Sashiko White Thread Comparison
Left: #10 Original White / Right: #12 Bright White

Even we aren’t so sure how color of stitching come out

Keiko has almost 35 years of experience in Sashiko. She always says, “We can imagine how the color of stitching will come out. However, it isn’t certain and we cannot promise the color result when we try something new.”

When we start a new project, we often make a small stitching sample to make sure if the fabric and stitching match as we imagine. It is another reason of difficulty in accepting a custom order over the Internet. Although we want to achieve the result is as the customer imagined, the combination sometimes results in difference to the image based on the color chart. We accept an order from the people who understand this difficulty of finding the right thread.

 

Well, in fact, this difficulty is actually what makes Sashiko more interesting.

We never know what’s gonna happen until we actually start stitching. Isn’t it like a life?

Gradation Color Sashiko Thread

Gradation Color Sashiko Thread with Sample Stitching

Recently, I enjoy making “Thread Bobbins – Itomaki” like the photo below. They are just so cute. Itomaki is a process of preparing to start Sashiko efficiently. However, I kind of enjoy the preparation process than actual stitching for now. Well, both Sashiko Stitching and winding the thread are the great meditation to calm me down. Here are the Itomaki Bobbins I made for gradation color Sashiko Thread.

*I sometimes refer Gradation Color Sashiko Thread to Variegated Color Sashiko Thread

 

gradation color Sashiko Thread 2

Enjoy the color variegation

Five selection of Gradation Color Sashiko Thread is one of our best selling products on our website. The color variegation adds great charm to the Sashiko project. For example, by using #203 Pink-to-White Color Sashiko thread, you will get the great Sakura (Cherry Blossom) color when you make a flower design pattern on the fabric.

 

Coron Sashiko Thread Available in USA | gradation color Sashiko Thread.

 

Sample Stitching with Gradation Color Sashiko Thread

I received some requests to untie the Variegated Color Sashiko thread, so I made the sample Sashiko stitching with it. From left to right, #205-#204-#203-#202-#201. I stitched about 3~4 lines for each color. The design of sample stitching is simply the parallel lines with changing the thread by a meter or so. It is beautiful as it is already colorful.

 

gradation color Sashiko Thread 4

 

In addition to 5 Gradation Color Selection, we have 15 Solid (Mono) Color Selection, 2 Sashi.Co Original Color Selection, and more than 25 of Natural Dyed (Botanical Dyed) Selection for the Sashiko thread. They are all great for the Sashiko Stitching. As I repeatedly say, I strongly recommend you to get the best Sashiko Thread available for your investment. Sashiko requires you to invest a lot of your time. I want everyone to have a great result, and good quality Sashiko thread will be a good reward.

 

I will make sample stitching fabric for the other colors I have.

Keep you updated with us. Enjoy Sashiko!

 

*All of the Sashiko Thread is available in our Etsy Store as well as Amazon Market Place.

 

Wallet Sashiko Boro Repair 1

Wallet Sashiko Boro Repair Project

Since 2012, I have been using a Sashiko card-holder as a wallet to carry my debit/credit cards. After repeating putting my jeans pocket so many times, even the Sashiko fabric start getting torn. When I share the photo on Instagram, many people reacted to the photo how interested they were to see the process of repairing. It became like a Boro mending, so here is my Wallet Sashiko Boro Repair Project.

Repair it instead of Replace it

My wallet looks like the photo. There are some holes. The edge of wallet started fraying. Soon or later, the wallet will be completely torn and it will not function as the card-holder. Replace it, or repair it to reuse it.

Wallet Sashiko Boro Repair 0

 

First, the most important step. Preparing the Sashiko fabric to patch. I prepared several kinds of Sashiko fabric to see which one is the most appropriate fabric.s

Wallet Sashiko Boro Repair 2

 

Choosing the “right” fabric for the project is very fun part. I spend good amount of time to decide the one would be great on Wallet Sashiko Boro Repair Project.

 

Wallet Sashiko Boro Repair 3

 

After selecting the fabric, the repairing stitch start. Unlike the Sashiko running stitch, repairing takes more time, one stitch by one stitch. Since the needle go through several layers of fabric, it is so hard to push through the needle. The pain of my finger is the by-product of this beautiful Wallet Sashiko Boro Repair.

Here is the photo of before and after.

Wallet Sashiko Boro Repair 0 Wallet Sashiko Boro Repair 1

 

The repair for inside wasn’t necessary much. I made a few stitches to reinforce the patch I made outside. The few stitches look pretty unique as well.

 

Wallet Sashiko Boro Repair

 

The Concept of Wallet Sashiko Boro Repair Project

“Upcycle” and “Repurpose” are the keywords on our projects. When I realize my personal belonging (besides pairs of jeans) requires the Sashiko and Boro mending project, I was excited to repair that. The more I repair the fabric, the more I feel the attachment to the item. Using one item with care instead of replacing them every time you see the damage is the key concept of our activities.

 

The Wallet looks a bit like a Boro piece. By repeating the repairing, it will be more beautiful like the other famous boros. We, whoever interested in Sashiko and I, are creating the future Boros.

Sashiko Patchwork 1

Sashiko Patchwork and its Concept

The Japanese used to say; “When you have a piece of fabric as large as the size you can wrap three soy beans, you should keep it so the piece of fabric may be useful in repairing.” We respect this concept in appreciating the fabric. We repair Boro with the small fabric, and we make a larger fabric as the Sashiko Patchwork.

 

A way to appreciate fabric: Sashiko Patchwork

The Japanese have an interesting word, which became quite famous outside of Japan, “Mottainai(もったいない).” This term conveys a sense of regret concerning waste. Personally, I would like to translate this term to “appreciation to the resource” instead of “regretting the waste.” When a person throws away the food, we say “Mottainai.” Although it indeed describes the regretfulness of the waste, I prefer respecting the concept behind the regretfulness of the word, the appreciation for the food as the limited resource.

The same concept applies to the fabric. We try to keep as many small pieces of fabrics as possible. By using them in Sashiko Patchwork or Mending Projects, we intend to give the fabric another purpose. Our main activity is to repurpose something which could be just a piece of garbage. Turning waste to the beautiful & useful things are the basic concept we follow.

 

Sashiko Patchwork 2

 

 

Needless to say, it is easier to use a sheet of fabric to make a bag.

Patchworking with small fabrics is a troublesome and time-consuming process. However, we believe the beauty of Sashiko patch working can influence many people who love arts, and contribute to the sustainable society by up-cycling and repurposing the limited resource.

 

The bag is made by Keiko (Sashi.Co & Keiko Futatsuya).

One of Keiko’s specialty is to find the best small patch from a pile of “To be waste fabric” and create the beautiful piece. Keiko and I share the same goal of bringing the old fabric which people no longer need (use) back to the main stage of fabric. The main stage as the items being used by us.

 

 

Another way to appreciate: Repairing and Boro

A process of repairing the fabric with Sashiko and the resulting in Boro is another way to appreciate the fabric. We also repair Boro. Please spare some of your time to read another section of this website. We share many stories and projects of Boros.

 

 

Japanese Dressmaker Tracing Paper 3

Japanese Dressmaker Tracing Paper for Sashiko

I have been introducing the same carbon paper, so-called “Chakopee”, the Japanese Dressmaker Tracing Paper. There is a note written in Japanese on the back of product package. Here is the translation of note on using the Japanese dressmaker tracing paper appropriately. For more information how to use the tracing paper, please refers the video tutorial (listed on the bottom of this article) of “how to transfer the Sashiko pattern”. The package of 5 sheets is available on this website.

 

 

The product is available with the Selection of 4 colors is available now. Pick the color which matches to your project.

  • – White
  • – Blue
  • – Yellow
  • – Pink
Japanese Dressmaker Tracing Paper 3 Japanese Dressmaker Tracing Paper 1
Japanese Dressmaker Tracing Paper 2 Japanese Dressmaker Tracing Paper 4

 

Notes on using Japanese Dressmaker Tracing Paper

The Pattern will be erased by washing the fabric with water.
Read it before you use it.
  • – Please try to use a small piece of fabric (which you plan to use) and the corner of this paper to test if the pattern washed off as you wish, wait until the pattern gets dried thoroughly, and test it.
  • – When you erase the pattern, please avoid using the Oil-based solvent such as Benzine.
  • – If you iron the fabric before erasing the pattern, the pattern may stay stronger and get more difficult to be washed away. Please be careful with that.
  • – If the pattern does not get washed away by just water washing, please try to wash with neutral detergent by hand. Please AVOID DRY CLEANING.
  • – You may experience the difficulty of transferring the pattern onto the thick and bouncy fabric such as felt. (The thick and bouncy fabric isn’t ideal for Sashiko.)
  • – After usage, please keep the paper in the bag, and avoid the high-temperature &high-humid condition and direct sunlight. Please reach out from children’s reach.

 

Personal notes from experience.

  • – Using a ballpoint pen with good pressure will result in a good transferring
  • – If you press your hand when you hold the fabric and pattern, the shape of the hand may be transferred as well.

 

Natural Dye Sashiko Thread List

Natural Dye Sashiko Thread List for 2017_S Collection

I am grateful that I received some active reactions to the article I wrote about “why does Keiko create the Natural Dye Sashiko Thread.” After working hard on studying the Natural Dye Thread, we have a Natural Dye Sashiko Thread List for the Summer of 2017. All available for sale. This is the list of natural dye thread we can re-create. In other words, even after they get sold out, we can restock the very similar color (almost identical) Sashiko thread.

They are all available on our online store. The coupon for Sashiko threads (free shipping for a purchase with 5+ threads) is still active.

 

Summer 2017 | Natural Dye Sashiko Thread List

Gray Color Collection

Natural Dye Sashiko Thread List 2

Each of the beautiful gray colored threads has its uniqueness by adding a hint of other colors such as purple, green, beige, and indigo blue. Although the gray color collection is not as fancy as the pink color collection, the gray color matches to the vintage fabric very well. In fact, these gray colored threads are most often used thread in Sashi.Co & Keiko Futatsuya collection.

Natural Dye Sashiko Thread List 002
#002 Japanese Nutgall
Natural Dye Sashiko Thread List 004
#004 Tangala
Natural Dye Sashiko Thread List 006
#006_Myrobalan
Natural Dye Sashiko Thread List 022
#022_Mountain Peach

 

 

Pink Color Collection

Natural Dye Sashiko Thread List 3

 

Pink Color Collection is our all time favorite. It looks beautiful on any color of fabric, and it adds the colorfulness to Sashiko.

It was challenging to stabilize the pink colors as the re-stackable thread. As you can see, one dye material, such as Lac Dye and Madder, can create several colors based on the condition and dye catalysts. Enjoy the beauty of purple to pink. They are even beautiful to just look at.

Natural Dye Sashiko Thread List 008
#008_LacDye
Natural Dye Sashiko Thread List 010
#010_LacDye
Natural Dye Sashiko Thread List 013
#013_Madder
Natural Dye Sashiko Thread List 014
#014_Madder
Natural Dye Sashiko Thread List 015
#015_Madder

Yellow Color Collection

We learned that our valued customer finds it difficult to use the yellow color in Sashiko. The yellow colors from Natural Dye could be a good substitute (or even upgrade) for the white thread. For example, the indigo blue fabric and yellow natural dye get the result of white looking. Both colors from Mountain Peach and Myrobalan will open up another possibility to your Sashiko project!

 

 

Natural Dye Sashiko Thread List yellow

 

Natural Dye Sashiko Thread List 024
#024_Mountain Peach
Natural Dye Sashiko Thread List 025
#025_Myrobalan

 

Enjoy Sashiko!

 

Upcycle Stitches Online Store

Upcycle Stitches Etsy Store

Upcycle Stitches Amazon Storefront

Sashi.Co Original Color Sashiko Thread 1

Sashi.Co Original Color Sashiko Thread

As I repeatedly mention in the website, it is very important to have the good thread when you enjoy Sashiko. In fact, it is more difficult to “find” the best thread than choosing the one. As a group of Sashiko artists, we always choose the thread from Coron Manufacture. However, it isn’t easy to get the color we want all the time, although we have more than 15 variations available. Keiko Futatsuya started dyeing the thread by herself with Natural Botanical Dye after experiencing the challenge in finding the appropriate color thread. They are very beautiful. At the same time, she realized, it isn’t budget friendly to use the Botanical Dye Sashiko thread only on her project. Then, she talked to the manufacturer, came up with this unique colored Sashiko thread. The Sashi.Co Original Color Sashiko Thread, which has the similar color to some of the Natural Botanical Dye Sashiko Thread.

 

Sashi.Co Original Color Sashiko Thread 2 Sashi.Co Original Color Sashiko Thread 3

Please Visit the page for the purchase of Sashi.Co Original Color Sashiko Thread.

Sashi.Co Original Color Sashiko Thread for everyone

Sashi.Co Original Color Sashiko Thread T1 Beige Sashi.Co Original Color Sashiko Thread T2 Moss Green

 

We have 2 colors of our Sashi.Co Original Color Sashiko Thread. One is Beige (#T1) and the other is Moss Green (#T2). Both of them have a unique color, which doesn’t look like the synthetic and machine dye. Since ordering the original color required a large amount of thread to dye in the big pot, we needed to spend a lot of our capital to make this happen. Therefore, we are providing the thread with the similar prices as the other synthetic dyed Sashiko thread such as Solid Color Sashiko Thread and Variegated Color Sashiko Thread.

 

Every kind of thread is the best for the Sashiko purpose. The difference is only the colors. I hope everyone can get an opportunity to try one of our great Sashiko thread.

 

Enjoy Sashiko!