Book Review Series: Fabrigami

Hi friends! I have another sneak peek from Tuttle PublishingFabrigami: The Origami Art of Folding Cloth To Create Decorative and Useful Objects.

Fabrigami via SakéPuppets.comThis 80-page book provides project instructions for turning fabric into folded treasures. It begins with a short introduction of the birth of Fabrigami — origami artists started to experiment with fabric, and Fabrigami was the name they gave it. Ah, duh. The author then divulges the Secret Formula for stiffening your fabric so it is workable like paper:

Fabrigami via SakéPuppets.comSorry, no reveal of the Secret Formula here! All I’ll tell you is…it looks messy. Which means kids will love the Secret Formula.

The projects proceed similarly to other origami books, with step-by-step illustrations guiding you through each fold. I’d say the book leans more decorative than useful, but let’s get real here — is any origami useful?

That doesn’t mean it isn’t fun.

Fabrigami via SakéPuppets.comI understand the appeal of using fabric rather than paper. It keeps longer and would hold up better as an ornament or keepsake, and the possibilities for texture and print are limitless. But paper can be nice, too. So for me it goes either way, and honestly, I think you could use these patterns for both.

I leave you with this:

Fabrigami via SakéPuppets.comI’m telling you, kids (and immature grown-ups) will love this book.

Stay tuned, because next week I’ll be giving a copy away!

This book was provided by Tuttle Publishing for review, but opinions are all my own. Thanks!

Matatabi Makers: nani IRO month

This month Miss Matatabi is celebrating nani IRO month, so in honor of my favorite Japanese fabric designer, I got in on the fun, too.

Saké Puppets for Miss Matatabi Makers' nani IRO monthI admitted to the world that I’m a sweaty beast, and sometimes I call Japanese double gauze my sweat sponge fabric. I think I’ve talked about this before, but the breathability of Japanese double gauze is ideally suited to handle Tokyo’s humid summers. I’m already hearing horror stories about NYC in the summer, so I thought I might as well attach it with some breezy nani IRO for the sweaty days ahead. Saké Puppets for Miss Matatabi Makers' nani IRO monthThe fabric is Pierre Pocho double gauze from the 2014 Spring nani IRO collection and the pattern is Sewaholic’s Belcarra blouse. The few changed I made include omitting the cuffs on the sleeves and instead finishing them with a rolled hem, attaching the neckline facing differently to create more of a border, and finishing it all with French seams.

Take that, summer.

Click over to Miss Matatabi’s site to check out more details, and all of the other wonderful nani IRO projects emerging this month.

Thanks Frances!!

nani IRO month!

Sashiko for Spring

Sashiko for Spring, by Saké PuppetsAh, sashiko for Spring. This is a bag pattern I reverse-engineered from a cotton gift bag I received while living in Japan. It was given to me while staying at a ryokan, so you can carry a few belongings as you wander in your yukata from breakfast to nap time to the bath and back again. I love the way the two handles tie together — loosely to slide over your wrist or elbow like a handbag, or tightly like a pouch to prevent treasures from falling out. I added some freeform sashiko geometry on one side, and used my sashiko sampler pattern for the other. Sashiko for Spring, by Saké Puppets sakepuppets.comSashiko Sampler by Saké Puppets. Pattern available at sakepuppets.etsy.comThe bag is lined in old nani IRO double gauze, a scrap I had stashed in the depths of a craft box that followed me from Tokyo. Honestly, nothing compliments sashko-in-angles better than a light, floral nani IRO.Sashiko for Spring, by Saké Puppets sakepuppets.comWell hello, Spring.

Saké Puppets around the Web

Hello! I thought I’d share a quick update on some things happening around the Saké Puppets studio. First, I am very excited to share that I am now contributing to the Miss Matatabi Makers, where each month I’ll be sewing a new project with the delightful Japanese fabrics available in Miss Matatabi’s shop. You can take the girl out of Japan, but she’ll take the fabric with her. (^_−)−☆

Saké Puppets for Miss Matatabi MakersRiding Peplum by Saké Puppets for Miss Matatabi MakersClick on over to check out my first post, the new Riding Peplum pattern by April Rhodes in JUBILEE cotton lawn. Whoosh!

I also recently contributed a sashiko tutorial and coaster pattern to Kindred Stitches, a digital hand-craft magazine available on the Apple Newsstand. There are some very sweet projects included in the Japanese issue, so if you are interested, head on over to iTunes to check it out.

Nippori Fabric Party

I have been to Tokyo’s fabric district many times, but like a trail horse I always go to the same shops. Recently I’ve been feeling brave enough to start sewing garments with fabrics other than cotton or linen, but I have little idea about where or how to start. Sewing bloggers to the rescue!

Nippori meet up


Photo courtesy of Chie. We are all wearing clothing we made. 🙂

I met Chie of Vivat Veritas, Inna Thewallinna, and Frances of Miss Matatabi (hiding) for a day of shopping and fabric education in Nippori. It was fantastically fun. We showed each other our favorite shops, they answered my questions about synthetic and drapey materials, and we challenged (dared?) each other to make something wearable out of bright prints.

Nippori fabric haulI bought some knit jersey and flamingos wearing high heels from Tomato, the largest and most popular shop in Nippori. We also popped into Zak Zak where everything was 100 yen per meter. We were in and out of a few other shops along the way and ended with lunch at a Persian all-you-can-eat restaurant where the owner tickles customers, insists you eat with your hands and ride his camel.camelPhoto courtesy of Inna. I am frightened.

Thanks for the fabric education and great day, ladies! We’re planning another trip later this summer, so let us know if you’d like to come along!

Shop sale!

A quick note to share the new kits I just posted in my web shop.

sashiko stash bust!Whew! Say that 5 times fast!

I’m cleaning out my craft closet, which means I gathered all my random bits and pattern pieces and put together some discounted surprise samplers. What fun! For me and hopefully for you, too.

This sashiko grab-bag includes everything you’ll need to make 4 coasters, including a surprise selection of patterns and fabrics. You’ll get a random yet well-coordinated assortment. Let’s get a little sampler-dangerous. 

What, you don’t think embroidery is dangerous and edgy? Then we need to spend more time together, and I’ll show you a stabbin’ dangerous time. (^_-)-☆

More info on the kits here. Thanks!