All add-ons are now open for registration!
Our newest additions are the Yamagata Mini Workshops ($55 USD). These 1.5 hour workshops offer a chance to learn regional sashiko techniques from Yamagata's premier sashiko artisans.
REMEMBER: You must have completed your registration and paid your balance in order to sign up for workshops and other symposium events!
YAMAGATA MINI WORKSHOPS
In the northernmost prefecture of Honshū, the people of Tsugaru historically survived long, cold winters with limited resources. Their kogin embroidery was born out of necessity, to create toughened insulated material by stitching warm but expensive cotton yarn, and sometimes cotton rags, into readily available bast fiber cloth. Tsugaru embroidery is based on counting threads over the weave of the base cloth to create patterns varying across three regions: higashi (east), nishi (west), and mishima. Learn to stitch in the Tsugaru style and take home a coaster patterned with your chosen design.
Hemp cloth, thread, and needles will be provided. Students should bring small scissors or thread snips and reading glasses.
Women of Nanbu, in the Pacific coastal region of northern Aomori prefecture, have been practicing their decorative craft of hishizashi for the past 300 years. They developed their stitches out of necessity to create insulated clothing by layering expensive but warm cotton with readily available bast fiber cloth. When cotton was first becoming available to northern Japan, the cloth was primed with a pale blue indigo wash. On top of this light blue background, Nanbu stitchers create complex patterns using colorful threads, counting threads to build geometric diamond shapes called hishi. Learn the Nanbu hishizashi technique to pattern an 18 x 20 cm mat.
Hemp cloth, naturally dyed thread, and needles will be provided. Students should bring small scissors or thread snips and reading glasses.
Without the aid of draft animals, northern Japanese lumberjacks hauled heavy sleighs by slinging padded straps over their shoulders. Women used Yusa sashiko to stitch these reinforced straps for their fathers, husbands, and sons, with patterns symbolizing health, safety, prosperity, and wishes for good harvest. At Mount Chōkai where there was an opening ceremony for going into the mountains to work every February, workers would wear their most beautifully stitched straps to celebrate the occasion. One of many variations of sashiko, Yusa sashiko is made without any pre-marked design, instead relying on reading the natural grid of the cloth. Practice this technique to create a sashiko embroidered pincushion on a maple wood base.
Cloth, thread, needles, and pincushion kit will be provided. Students should bring small scissors or thread snips and reading glasses.