This special fabric for Japanese sashiko stitching projects has a printed pattern to guide your needle so you can get straight to sewing. Simply follow the pattern. When you’re finished working, the printed pattern washes out.
This item is sold by the panel. Each panel measures 108 x 60 cm (44 x 23.5 inches) and includes all eight printed sashiko pattern templates.
The sashiko pattern panel is an excellent aid for practicing your skills or just relaxing with needle in hand. The resulting swatches can be incorporated into any project you dream up. A few ideas:
- A pouch
- A set of coasters
- A pocket
- A patch or applique
8 sashiko patterns
Each panel includes the following traditional sashiko patterns:
Seven treasures pattern “shippo tsunagi”
This pattern of overlapping circles may be familiar to you from quilting, where it is known as double wedding ring, pickle dish, and a host of other names. It’s actually an ancient design, known in Japan long before sashiko itself evolved as the seven treasures pattern, or shippo-tsunagi. The “seven treasures” referred to are the seven precious metals and gemstones of Buddhism.
Blue ocean waves pattern “seigaiha”
This geometrical pattern made up of semi-circles is an oriental classic. Whether it reminds you of waves, fish scales, or fans, one thing is certain – this pattern evokes Japan – the association is so strong. On old maps, the waves indicated the sea, but today we find them on ceramics, fabrics, paper, and jewelry.
Weights pattern “fundo tsunagi”
This pattern of connected waves is called “fundo” after a type of brass weight once in popular use in Japan that had this shape. Placed together, the fundo shape creates a unique mosaic symbolizing purity and elegance. Today this traditional pattern is popular not only for sashiko, but also in interior design as a mosaic tile.
Hemp leaf pattern “asanoha”
The traditional hemp leaf pattern, asanoha, is one of the best known sashiko motifs. Before cotton became widely available in Japan, people wore clothes made of hemp and the plant was highly valued. The asanoha pattern was often sewn on children’s clothing to make the child healthy and strong, like the hemp plant.
Linked ten cross pattern “jujitsunagi”
This pattern made up of connected crosses is named in Japanese for the number ten because the kanji symbol for ten (十) looks like a plus sign or a cross. This pattern of endless tens symbolizes wealth and the good life.
Sea urchin pattern “ganzezashi”
This pattern originated on Tobishima, a little fishing island off the coast of Japan that’s less than two miles from end to end and only half a mile wide. The sea urchin is a treasured delicacy there and the ganzezashi pattern was thought to ensure a good catch.
Autumn wind pattern “nowaki”
Autumn is typhoon season in Japan. Brisk winds bend the grass in the meadows and the rice in the fields almost to the ground, giving us the inspiration for this classic sashiko pattern known simply as “nowaki” – grass.
Arrow feather pattern “yabane”
In Japan, the arrow has many symbolic meanings. When skilled archers were not busy on the battlefield, they kept their skills honed at various exhibitions and contests and a white-fletched arrow was a good luck charm that you can still find in temple shops today. Embroidered on clothing, this pattern is said to protect the wearer from evil.
Made in Japan
Produced in Japan, this fabric is a premium, 100% cotton weave from Olympus, a trusted Japanese manufacturer of sashiko fabrics and notions.
About sashiko stitching
Sashiko is a traditional Japanese needlework technique originally intended simply for reinforcing and mending clothing. Over time an array of distinctly minimalist geometrical designs has evolved. In traditional sashiko patterns the needlework is done on indigo dyed deep blue fabric with special cotton sashiko thread, thicker than ordinary thread, that is a loose twist of several thinner strands. At first glance it resembles crochet thread or embroidery floss but is fundamentally different; both crochet thread and embroidery floss are twisted more tightly and floss is glossier and less sturdy. Naturally, you can try your hand at sashiko using any kind of thread, but for the right effect and an authentic look we recommend using sashiko thread. To work with this thread, you’ll need a sashiko needle or at least a fairly big needle with a large eye. Sashiko needles are longer and stronger, and sewing with them is much easier.
Completed needlework pieces should be washed by hand in warm water (max 40°C). Dry in the shade. Iron on the cotton setting, with or without steam. If using indigo fabric, keep in mind that the color will bleed slightly, coloring white thread a pale blue (an effect that is considered desirable in traditional sashiko).