Sashiko kits may seem like a new needlework craft, but Sashiko has actually been around for centuries. Filled with Asian influences, Sashiko is more than needlework. It's a form of Japanese quilting and an artwork in its own right. It's recognized by the indigo blue fabric and contrasting white thread patterns. It can be an easy craft to master once you find the right supplies.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Consider a basic Sashiko kit at a quilting, needlework or specialty store that's as complete as possible. Having all the right equipment at the start is helpful if this is your first try at a new craft.
Look for a list of the included supplies on the package to make sure you have all you need. It should contain directions, cotton fabric with a printed design or an iron-on transfer, Sashiko threads, a needle and a Sashiko thimble.
Select a kit with a medium-weave linen-cotton blend fabric. Traditionally it's an indigo-dyed cotton. Medium to dark blue and black fabrics in a similar weave are appropriate.
Ensure the kit has a 100 percent cotton Sashiko thread in a contrasting color to compliment the dark fabric. Usually the Sashiko thread is white.
Check that the needle is about 2 to 2 1/2 inches long. It's thin from top to bottom, and the eye is small. The point of the needle should be sharp. You need to use the needle with a Sashiko thimble that's handy for the running stitch.
Tips and warnings
- If the kit is missing directions, or you want to try Sashiko without a kit, it's easy to find directions on using a running stitch.
- Other fabric and thread combinations are acceptable for use in Sashiko quilting. Rich- or folksy-colored fabrics paired with bright color threads work well too.
- Threading the traditional Sashiko needle included in the kit may be difficult so you may decide to use a needle with a bigger eye. A needlepoint or sewing needle may be used, but make sure the needle is long and thin.
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