I have fallen hard for Sashiko and visible mending. To me it’s not only a practical way to mend garments but it gives beauty to once worn, or torn, pieces.
Sashiko (Japanese: 刺し子, literally “little stabs” or “little pierce”) is a form of decorative reinforcement stitching (or functional embroidery) from Japan that started out of practical need during the Edo era (1615-1868). Traditionally used to reinforce points of wear or to repair worn places or tears with patches, making the piece ultimately stronger and warmer, this running stitch technique is often used for purely decorative purposes in quilting and embroidery. The white cotton thread on the traditional indigo blue cloth (said to recall snow falling around old farmhouses) gives sashiko its distinctive appearance, though decorative items sometimes use red thread.Sashiko embroidery was used to strengthen the homespun clothes of olden times. Worn out clothes were pieced together to make new garments by using simple running stitches. These clothes increased their strength with this durable embroidery. By the Meiji era (1868-1912) sashiko had been established enough that it had evolved into winter work in northern farming communities, when it was too cold to work outside. – From Wikipedia
Recently I discovered two awesome books on Sashiko from an Instagram post by Amanda of Amanda Loves to Create. Amanda co-hosted a Sashiko Stitch Along with Krista of Surrur_Sunday from January 19th to February 9th using Susan Briscoe’s books, The Ultimate Sashiko Sourcebook and Japanese Sashiko Inspiration. The photos and information shared during this stitch along hooked me even more and I had to learn more about this beautiful and creative method of mending, and of course I had to buy the books.
Needless to say I needed supplies, so I purchased a variety of Sashiko threads, patches and Sashiko needles from Snuggly Monkey, which by the way I highly recommend for stitching supplies. The threads are very strong,and colorful, and the needles are extremely sharp. The mending patches are stamped in traditional Sashiko designs on cotton fabric that comes in colors of medium denim, dark denim and dark taupe.
My patching is not perfect but it turned out as I hoped it would and hubby is happy with it, which is all that counts. I have a lot to learn about this form of stitching and I am so excited to not only incorporate it in mending, but in quilting too.