Saturday, 29 November 2008

Pink Blue Wave

Pink Blue Wave? Pinkish blue? Pink and blue? No, it's blue wave in pink. Layered concentric circle design is called blue wave and this design shown is modified the circles to pointed peaks but still called blue wave design, hence blue wave in pink. Blue wave (regardless of the colour) is one of the oldest and most traditional design and you can still see it everywhere in Japan, well, not everywhere but very popular especially where kimono is concerned.

This design looks like fish scales, doesn't it? However, there is actually a design called scales (another old and traditional one) and I will show you next Saturday, of course in pink.

Saturday, 22 November 2008

Pink Drawstring Bag

I have been browsing many bag making blogs and wanted to make my own. Since I am not an expert at sewing, I thought it was prudent to start with something easy, hence a simple drawstring bag here. I lined the bag but didn't attach any pocket on inside, the fact I greatly regret. A simple slip pocket wouldn't have been much trouble to make I suppose, now that the bag came out reasonable satisfactory. I have got enough fabric left so perhaps another bag, maybe bigger one, with a pocket inside would be practical for travel. I am going to have a trip to Europe from the end of the year. Matching bags in the suitcases would look really lovely (and tidy) don't you think?

Tuesday, 18 November 2008

It's too early for spring, but...

It's not too bad down here; usually the winter is relatively mild and virtually no snow. And it's still autumn, not winter yet. Last night I made this thimble and thought of spring, however.

Last Saturday I participated in Pink Saturday and a lot of people visited my blog and I received many kind comments, thank you. Several ladies mentioned my thimbles unusual in shape. Yes, they are unusual. Although they look more like rings than thimbles, these ring shaped thimbles have been norm for centuries in Japan. As a matter of fact the thimbles we are familiar with are new addition to Japanese sewing world, introduced probably a little more than hundred years ago I believe.

They are made of paper for base, cotton fabric(although I use cotton/poly instead) for lining, floss silk for padding, and silk sewing thread for surface stitches. Perhaps it may be difficult for you to obtain floss silk, but you can substitute it with cotton wadding. Actually I use cotton wadding when I received orders for rings although I do not encourage to use them as rings. You see, they are all made of the things which do not go well with being wet, means you can't wash your hands.

I am working on a drawstring bag now. If it turned up presentable, I will post it next time. See you then.

Saturday, 15 November 2008

Pink Thimble

This thimble is the same design as the first one I showed you last week but you see how the colour affects the result. This is on a modern side colour scheme and the other one was rather traditional. Don't equate "traditional" to "subdued", though. Bright light green and red is traditional colour combination for young girl's kimono and no one can call it subdued, can she? Anyway I like the result and pink cheers me up, everyone needs something to cheer her up, even if it's so tiny as to a thimble, when the day is getting shorter and shorter.

I am setting up my shop at Etsy. I have just signed up and that's all so there is nothing to see there now, but I intend to list some thimbles there later today. When my shop becomes presentable, I will let you know and I would appreciate it if you could pop in and have a look at and tell me what you think about it.

Post Script I: It still needs some cosmetic touch up, but my Etsy shop is kind of soft open: Please have a look and visit with me here, I listed five thimbles including this one.

Post Script II: There has to be a way to put the permanent link on my blog, but I cannot find it yet. Perhaps someone help me?

Sunday, 9 November 2008

How to use a Japanese thimble

I showed you a Japanese silk stitched thimble in my last post however, I didn't tell you how to use it.

A Japanese thimble, whether it is silk stitched or not, is basically a band instead of a cap, so you put it on your middle finger over the first knuckle on the hand you use to hold a needle like this picture.

The silk stitched thimbles are made of stiff paper for base, bias cotton fabric for lining, and floss silk for padding, and silk hand sewing threads for surface stitching. Here are another two I made recently:

Friday, 7 November 2008

My First Post

I have been wondering for a few days what would be my first post and came up with this thimble. It doesn't look like a thimble with which you are familiar, does it, because it's a Japanese Silk stitched thimble and I made it myself.
These silk thimbles had been used when sewing silk kimonos (kimono sewing are all done by hand, no quick machine stitching) however, people started to wear less and less kimono and there weren't many people who made silk thimbles which are very suitable for delicate fabrics until a few years ago. Until one clever lady whose grandmother had taught her how to make these lost arts published a book. Of course I bought the book and started make them by myself. I am not much of a dressmaker but I find it really useful when I do embroidery pushing the needle through back up to the front side of the fabric on the frame.
I am not sure how often I could update my blog, but I will try to add a new post once a week. So please come back next week.