November 08, 2021 at 08:59AM

What does this picture (Sashiko)talk to you about?

Sashiko is more than a marketing word. It is not definitely mere technique or one type of “style”. If I have to define it (although I do not want to), it is a form of stitching done by the ordinary Japanese. Therefore, understanding the “common sense” for Japanese is pretty important. “Mastering Sashiko” without even “trying” to learn Japanese culture sounds superficial. I occasionally encounter a non-Japanese person who claims they know about Sashiko. I respect their efforts, but they have not learned Sashiko enough to really see the depth of this ordinary.

However, the “stitching” itself is not so special. It happened everywhere in the world. Anyone’s grandmother or their mother would have done the similar thing, in their own country, with their own culture, on their ordinary. Therefore, Sashiko as a name does matter: It differentiates our stitching from others – not talking about good or bad, superior or inferior – I am just talking about protecting my own identity as a Japanese person. I want them to care for their own culture first if they claim they know about Sashiko.

At the same time, don’t get me wrong, “Anyone” can enjoy Sashiko. I want everyone to enjoy Sashiko – not the Sashiko filtered by someone who does not even speak Japanese, but the Sashiko the Japanese have preciously & carefully tried to “bury” and “pass down”.

What does the picture bring to you? Autumn leaves and Sashiko. To me, it is a cue to expect the snow, and appreciate the short, and instantaneous beauty right before another beautiful, yet severe season. We all have something precious in the memory: and when we can collectively share that, we call it “culture”.





紅葉の季節。上高地の神々しい色合いと、通勤途中の銀杏の木の下のベンチで咥えた煙草の味は、今でもしっかりと記憶に残っています。いろんな意味で厳しい冬の訪れの合図と同時に。40歳近くになって漸く紅葉を客観的に楽しめるようになりました。昔は「終わりの始まり」のような気がして。流れがあり、動くからこそ「何か」を見出す。紅葉の奥に潜む日本人らしさが愛おしいのですよ。少し足を伸ばせば溢れる程の紅葉が楽しめる。そんな国はそれほど無いのですよ。

#Sashiko #JapaneseSashiko #Hitomezashi #刺し子 #日本人の刺し子


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