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Every now and then I like to go Barnes and Noble, get a coffee and sit down with a pile of sewing books I haven’t seen before. Last week, I was intrigued by a book about Shashiko embroidery called Make + Mend. The author also has a wonderful blog, which you can find here.

Shashiko Embroidery

What is Shashiko Ebroidery?

Shashiko embroidery is a traditional Japanese art form that uses a running stitch to either mend clothing or decorate fabric items. You can find all kinds of ideas and patterns for this kind of embroidery and there are lots of great ones in this book. If you still aren’t sure what I’m talking about, see some examples here, here and here (what a gorgeous piece of art!!)

What can I do with it?

These days, I’ve been seeing this running stitch used on modern quilts and table runners and, maybe most often, to repair jeans.

While it’s not something I’ve tried before, I do love the look of it! I’m not sure I have time for this kind of extensive handwork, but maybe I could try a pillow or table runner. A running stitch is pretty fast and easy, so it probably doesn’t take long once you get going. If I try it, I’ll be sure and post my finished project here, of course.

Tools for Shashiko

I read in Make + Mend that embroidery floss for Shashiko is different than regular embroidery floss (although for starting out, I’m sure regular floss or pearl cotton is just fine). You can buy a tool kit to get started if that’s easiest for you. This one has everything you’ll need.

Are you intrigued by sewing techniques that originated in other cultures? If so, you might also like my post about the Mexican Huipil.

Cheers :)