Japanese fabrics and sewing

My masculinity is going to take a hit on this one.

My wife recently finished up this sewing class and has enjoyed it immensely. After the kids go to sleep it’s become her routine to sit down at her sewing table and work (play?) for a few hours. I’ve heard it whispered in the past, but apparently it’s true – people will make trips to Japan solely to stuff their suitcases full of fabrics and carry their treasures back to their studio.

After watching my wife work I’ve finally started to pick up on some of the intricacies that make Japanese fabrics so endearing.

NaniIRO (what color) is one of the shops that my wife visits frequently. Sad to say, but I’ve found myself drooling over some of their fabrics, wishing I could reach into the screen and wrap them around myself to bandage my wounded manliness.

They also offer free sewing templates that you can print and make your own clothes. There is something very beautiful and endearing about the hand-written ones. However, according to my wife they make her shudder. For practicality she much prefers the computer-generated ones.

click to enlarge

And these are some images from another store she visits, Polka Drops.

And below is a what the computer-generated template looks like. Easier to follow, I guess. But I far prefer the hand-written one.


  1. This is so funny because I, too, am taking a sewing “bootcamp” at the moment, and in my own way it has been a great blow to my ego (I can't use the word manliness, of course). I've always taken great (if perhaps misguided) pride in my lack of domesticity. For most of my life I was a rambler who lived on the road and shunned the idea of a homelife. Even now that I am a homeowner, a wife, and a mother, my domestic skills are at a skeletal minimum. My husband (a former chef) does all things kitchen-related. I have never owned an ironing board, much less a sewing machine. But motherhood and a gratuitous addiction to beautifully-designed children's clothes has forced me to grit my teeth, gird my loins and learn to sew. Since the very first class, Japanese fabrics have been dancing like sugarplums in my head. So thanks for the link! I think the “architecture” of pattern-making will be my forté in all of this, so I very much look forward to the freedom of designing my girl's clothes for her.

  2. I look at this and wish I knew how to sew. It is not like I have not done any sewing. I used to work in the costume shop at the university I attended but all of my projects were supervised. I do not have the nerve to try anything on my own. The fabrics are exquisite.

  3. I heart japanese fabrics, and a friend just bought me some japanese pattern books…I am in love with simplicity.

  4. they are so delicate… beautiful!

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