Wednesday, 12 March 2008

A great place for sashiko supplies - Euro Japan Links Limited

This will probably read like an advert, but as I'm often asked where you can buy sashiko threads, fabrics, needles etc. this seems like a useful bit of info! My main source is Euro Japan Links Limited. Mary and Shiro are based in London and offer a great mail order service and also attend the larger UK quilting and needlecraft shows, plus some of the European shows. They are happy to ship materials worldwide and their contact details are in the back of all my books - they have a fantastic range of other Japanese fabrics for patchwork, quilting and crafts as well as sashiko materials.

Their homepage -
Sashiko supplies and some kits - my Shonai Sashiko sampler kits are shown above -

The medium sashiko threads have the largest colour range, but I sometimes combine both fine sashiko threads and medium in one project - using the medium when I can't get that colour in fine! There isn't a great difference in thickness, but it is easier to get the fine sashiko thread through slightly finer fabrics, like tsumugi. The tsumugi is a very good choice if you also want to be able to combine patchwork piecing with sashiko panels, as it is fine enough for quite intricate patchwork, more like some American "homespun"-type plaids than printed patchwork fabric. It is also good for items like furoshiki (wrapping cloths) as it is thin enough to tie. Otherwise, I like the heavier sashiko cotton fabrics as they are so easy to stitch with either fine or medium thread. The heavier weight tsumugi is also good with either thread, and offers you some more colour choices. There's also a natural indigo for sashiko (the colour will migrate of course!) The sashiko sampler below used the heavier sashiko fabrics, with the heavier weight tsumugi and a piece of brown Osnaburg embroidery cotton (the Osnaburg fabric came from Inca Studio, which has now closed ;-( a good choice for colours you can't get in sashiko fabrics though - it is used for the reddish brown squares in the middle, matsukawabishi pine bark diamond and yamagata mountain shape patterns).

This sampler uses the dark blue tsumugi for both the patchwork and sashiko blocks, with a striped tsumugi border (I have similar tsumugi for sale at shows). The plain cream cotton was also from Euro Japan and the shot cotton mid blues are Colourshott fabrics by Oakshott. These samplers are from "Japanese Quilt Blocks to Mix and Match" -

Euro Japan Links also have some of my kits - including "Hyakutoku", "Takara", "Sankaku", "Koi", "Sakata" (all on the website) and a couple more, incuding "Yama" (sashiko and foundation pieced silk panel, see previous blog entry). Photos of some of these are in the "Inspiration Gallery" section of my new book, "Japanese Sashiko Inspirations" -

Euro Japan's prices and mail order service is so good, I don't bother buying things like cream sashiko thread or blue sashiko fabric when I go back to Japan, as it simply isn't cost effective to ship it home! I look out for hand dyed sashiko threads instead, but if you want to try hand dyeing threads, their fine sashiko thread takes dye beautifully...

1 comment:

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