Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Binging on Sashiko

Sashiko thimbles, leather and metal, on Olympus sashiko #12
Olympus Sashiko thread and pre-printed designs

You saw a bit of my sashiko from earlier this year, but then I stopped.  During my vacation in July I picked it up again and I just LOVE it.    I’ve completed 4 more designs since mid-July and here they all are in one post!  I also took two of the designs I did earlier this year and made them into pillows this month (that will be the next post).

Why do I love sashiko?
  • I use the preprinted Olympus sashiko kits so I don’t have to worry about transferring designs.
  • I also generally use the Olympus sashiko thread (one exception is below) and Olympus needles.
  • Unlike embroidery, it doesn’t need a hoop.
  • I use a sashiko thimble. Though it is not totally necessary, it does make it easier.
  • It’s small and easy to carry around.
  • Absolutely no fitting is involved.
  • It is the perfect activity to do while waiting.  In the past month I’ve sashikoed in Port Authority in NYC, while waiting for a car oil change and while waiting in a doctor’s office.   Suddenly all that time spent waiting became incredibly enjoyable!! My blood pressure in the doctor’s office was 104/70—that’s how relaxing it is. (ok, maybe that's just about my normal BP but still, relaxing!)
I thought it would be fun to take these pictures outside in the grass and now I'm not so sure about that, ha ha, but here we go:
Olympus Sashiko #201 above
Olympus Sashiko #203 above
Olympus Sashiko #204 above
Olympus Sashiko #40 dragonfly, above
I had mentioned to Anne that I wanted gray thread but Olympus doesn’t make any gray sashiko thread and she recommended a seller on ebay.  Worked out great!!

For those of you who like the front to be as neat as the back, here you go:
(Note, there is another sashiko method where there are no knots at all, and I will try it on the next dragonfly design as those knots are evident when the design is turned into a pillow.)
In the meantime, greetings from the mini-pumpkin patch:
I'm on vacation again this week and loving every minute of it, hope you are enjoying life too!
Be well!!


  1. By adding a thin batting to your pillow front, this may 'hide' the knots. But then most battings are white which may show through the sashiko cloth.
    I usually don't knot, instead I slip my thread thru 3 -4 stitches - old cross stitch trick for smoother surfaces. When I start a new area, I hold the thread down until I have stitched 3 -4 stitches over it and then continue on.
    I am loving your variegated sashiko. I need to try that.

    1. I'm trying to get that technique down but am still not satisfied!!

  2. Your hand stitching is awesome. Beautiful work!

  3. Yeah, Sashiko : ) Your samplers look wonderful. I ordered the dragonfly stitch kit from a shop on etsy and looking forward to working on it. Now that I see you recommend the thimbles I'll have to send for those too. That variegated thread looks really fun so I'll have to give that a try once I get some practice in. Do you have a favorite place where you get your threads and printed fabrics? Thanks for the inspiration : )

    1. Hi James! Yes, in person you can buy sashiko printed fabric and threads in NYC at the City Quilter (small selection) and also at Purl Soho (huuuge selection there in early August). Purl Soho also sells the thread and fabric online. I also like TaDaa Studios, they have a lot of sashiko too. They have their own website and also an etsy store. You will need the sashiko needles too. Enjoy!!

  4. Nice sashiko round-up! And happy vacay!


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