June 1, 2016 Japan

Hiroshima Taxi drivers polishing their cars while they wait for fares, lace seat covers bright white in the sun. Crows cruise the sky over Hiroshima. It’s a strange sight. Ominous to me, nothing new to the locals. Promenade of Peace is a tree-filled, narrow park between hotels, offices, and a main road. It has a…

May 31, 2016 Japan

Kyoto to Hiroshima Aizenkobo Dye Shop – The dyer Mr. Utsuki is kindly, enjoys teaching, very relaxed and happy to share. He treated me with kindness. His wife said the scarf I picked out was a “firefly” design. Husband said no, no. It’s “beating heart”, 35 year old design. Still new. I like it very…

October 27, 2014 Houston, TX

Houston House Building (Airbnb) – 2014 Houston International Quilt Market At night, looking out over a flat, glittering city. Feeling oddly settled now that I know my way around this part of Houston from walking miles and miles of circles through it every day. Knowing this building isn’t going to crumble in an earthquake is…

May 22, 2013 Japan

On the Ginza line heading to Asakusa Trains are efficient, clean, and feel more spacious than the Underground, but not as smooth as British trains. Prices aren’t bad. BART could learn a lot: Destinations are shown lit up on a sign above each door. Racks for baggage above seats. A little song plays before doors…

May 20, 2013 Japan

Koyata Okonogi-san’s silk worm farm He uses an older breed of silkworm from the Edo era to reproduce finer quality silk. Lime is sprinkled on the worms and leaves to keep them dry. Noriko is his apprentice. Awareness of how alive textiles are here. From raising silkworms and spinning the silk to tending the indigo…

May 18, 2013 (part 2) Japan

Itchiku Kubota Museum Wayside flowers = tsujigahana “I want my textiles to tell a story. I will discover new techniques.” – Ichiku Kubota Gold work on kimono “Ou” c. 2002 #17 in exhibit – At least four types of thread. Bricked and sometimes top outlined. Thin and thick bands, gold and silver. Kimono colors gold…

May 18, 2013 Japan

Isobe, Gunma, Japan If there is space to stand, there is space to put a garden. If there is space for a stone monument, there will be a cemetery. Side by side out here in the country, stones and flowers comfort the living and the dead. Things you find at a shrine: salt and water;…

Quick Bites – News for June, 2018

Here is a list of our upcoming events: Kimonomomo Open House Event – Saturday, June 23 in Alameda, CA. 10am-2pm. Click here for location map.  Pajaro Quilt Guild Textile Lecture and Trunk Show – Monday, July 9 in Aptos, CA. Click here for more information Sashiko Class – Monday, August 13 in San Jose, CA….

Where can you find Kimonomomo in March?

Quick update (because I’m working on four other slow updates from my Japan trip and something needs to get posted, let’s be honest): Upcoming Sashiko Class: Sashiko Specifics – Learning the Stitches Part 1 with Kimonomomo – March 26, The ReCrafting Co, Alameda, CA Upcoming Quilt Shows: East Bay Heritage Quilt Guild – Voices in…

End of the Year Updates and News for 2018

There was a time when I could semi-hibernate through December and rest up over the winter to prepare for spring shows and events. THAT HAS NOT HAPPENED THIS YEAR. We’re pretty much working full throttle this month, and January looks like more of the same, which is a good thing. Here’s what we have going…

Kogin Institute, Hirosaki, Aomori, Japan

I visited the Kogin Institute in Hirosaki on January 31, 2017 after visiting the Tokyo Quilt Festival, Takayama, and Osaka. It was a pleasant flight from Osaka to Hirosaki, with the view of snowy mountains most of the way, and many, many empty seats. My companion Toyo looked around the plane, counted the passengers, and…

Pardon the long absence, it’s been a busy year

Hello, dear readers. It’s been a while. In January & February I traveled Japan. More about that coming soon In March we launched our wholesale import business and showed at the San Francisco Quilt Guild Show In April I wrote a bunch, then stopped because there was so much more work to do with the…