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It seams that everyone worked really hard with his manual labors in old days. When I was little, my grand mother used to tell me after dinner when we were watching TV that her parents and siblings sat up late and did something by hands, sewing Yukata (cotton summer kimono), Zokin (cleaning rag) or Fukuro (fabric bags). They didn’t have TV so doing something and being productive was the way to spend their evening.

Waraji are sandals or flip-flops made from straw rope;
the standard footwear of the common people in Japan in past.

I remember my mother made me help her by separating knitting yarns and making them into balls. She knit hats and mittens, sometimes sweaters for us. The hand-made sweater looked rough and unfashionable from children’s eyes, and I preferred my friend’s ready-made sweater bought from a store, which looked neat and fashionable.

Zokin (dust cloth); old fabrics taken from worn-out kimono
were layered and stitched by using Sashiko stitching.

Generally, Japanese hand-made articles are well received. Especially the ones made unintentionally, no purposely, are attractive, because such items do not show off intention or profit of the maker. It is naturally accepted in our life. In this mechanized age, Hand-Made are booming.

A basket to carry on its back called Shoi-kago.

Kofu Wall hanging class at The Quilted Crow

This was a 2-day class to make a wall hanging. Kofu originally means “traditional fabric” in Japanese. The first hour was consisted with choosing fabrics and coordinating colors. Students are back and forth to the classroom and store, picking up fabrics to mix and match.  Each students chose fabrics that go with their own unique taste.
Then we moved on to transfer sashiko designs onto the borders of wall hanging. This is the most tough part because a lot of patient is required. Using Tracer pen or a tracing wheel, go over the line precisely. It will take a while but this step will make the end result different.
Now it’s time to stitch, which all the students are relaxed, just stitch quietly or chat while working on.

Stitching Sashiko on the border

After all Sashiko is done, the borders are attached to the mid-section of wall hanging.

Sewing borders onto the mid-section of wall hanging.

Here is an amazing piece. Faye doubled the size of the quilt. She did so much homework in between 2 classes that when she came in for the second class, almost all the work was done except hand-stitching the bindings.

Finished piece. The size was doubled.

Everyone’s project was nicely done!

Sew-on Magnetic Closure

This is one of the best notions in my opinion. Just sew it on at the last phase of your project.

My problem with traditional magnetic closures is to decide where it need to be installed. Also, I have to make a hope in fabric to install a metal place prior to constructing a bag. It is a lot of procedure to take. Then, I met this Sew-on Magnetic Closure about 5 years ago. All the bags I design and which requires a closure recommend using this. A friend of mine is a knitter who always wanted to find a way to close her knitted bag. Now she is happy to find out that she can just sew this one on to her projects.

Insert needle to the first hole, and give 3 stitches.

Move to next hale. Finish all 4 holes.

This is how it look when you finish sewing on.

Sew-on Magnetic Closure AK-25-14

Made in Japan and imported.

I used a strong color of thread here in order to show you how to install, but you can use a color of thread that can be blended in with the color of the closure. Sew-on Magnetic Closure AK-25-14 comes with 4 different colors: Gold, Silver, Black nickel and Antique gold.

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