Product Review: KARISMA Air Fade Pen and Fujix Soie et Silk Thread

It’s a product review two-for-one! I’ve been experimenting with the KARISMA Air Fade Ink pens on silk lately and I’m quite pleased with the results. I have heard that some brands of air fade ink pens will come back if the fabric is laundered, so I decided to use them on fabrics I wasn’t planning to…

Kimono Tuesday is now the Weekly Kimono

… Mainly because Tuesdays don’t always work for me, but I do enjoy wearing kimono at least once a week. So! Let’s catch up. Springtime in Northern California is back-and-forth, warm then cold again, rainy and cool, rainy and warm, dry and warm, dry and cold, and we all get confused. The sun is shining,…

Kimono Tuesdays

For some reason rainy spring days make me want to wear kimono. I wore kimono more frequently when I lived in Oregon (mostly in the high desert, not the rainy valley), but since moving back to California several years ago I haven’t put in the effort. On Monday, while rain clouds moved in over the…

Sashiko boro quilt

If you’ve seen me at a show or come to the Kimonomomo studio in the last few months, you’ve probably seen the quilt I’ve been working on. Pieced from Alexander Henry, Moda, Olympus, and Kona Bay prints, plus a few 19th century katazome cottons, it’s coming together nicely. Piecing took two days using a 1959 Singer…

Kogin – yet another diversion to keep my hands happy

You know, because I obviously have WAY too much free time. Koginzashi こぎん刺し (or according to various online translations, “concentrated silver stab”) is a regional stitch technique that evolved out of its plain but fascinating older sister, sashiko刺し子. By carefully counting the warp and weft threads of a piece of cloth, a pattern could be devised…

Kimonomomo Shop Updates for March 2014

February blew through the studio, bringing with it two shows (AQS Phoenix AZ & San Mateo, CA), many orders, and several new projects. Between keeping up with the shop and the garden–a lack of rain here meant daily watering so our winter vegetables wouldn’t die–I fell behind on my writing. To catch up, here is…

Preparing costumes for Dickens Fair 2014

I’m a little bit of a costuming nerd. Maybe an intermediate nerd. What started with historically accurate Halloween costumes in grade school turned into working at Renaissance Faire in high school, and Victorian costuming for Dickens Christmas Fair soon after that. Having a mother who could plan and sew a costume with a bit of…

My beautiful new studio!

After returning from Houston Quilt Market/Festival, unpacking boxes of stock and then getting even MORE delivered, I stood in the one tiny spot of bare floor left in my studio and wailed “I can’t move in here! I can’t breathe! I can hardly think!” Thomas heard me. He picked up some scratch paper and a…

Unpacking the pretties and piecing them together

I’ve been back from Houston for a week, worked 2.5 days at another show, and now I’m settling into the happy work of sorting fabrics in the studio. My show stock arrived a few days ago and is still being unpacked. Thomas and I discussed the new shelving units he will build for me, and…

From Caterpillar to Kimono: a Journey in Silk, part 1

My brain is still on Tokyo time. I sit at the breakfast table with my tea and toast and contemplate the day ahead; only it’s almost noon and I’m still not really awake. Most nights I’m up until 1:00 or 2:00 AM, but I’m struggling to get back on a schedule the rest of the…

Home again, with an extra suitcase or two

I left California two weeks ago with a half-filled medium-sized suitcase and a nearly empty duffel bag. I returned from Japan two days ago with those bags packed to bursting and added even more; a new, larger suitcase and a box, both filled with kimono, haori, obi, raw silk, furoshiki, books, obijime, yukata, and other…

Karinui Comparisons, part 2

In part 1 I disassembled an inexpensive kurotomesode (high formal women’s kimono) and gave you a peek at the inner workings, so to speak. This time we’ll be looking at a more expensive kimono and seeing how different the two can be. Part 2: The Hot Date Unlike the pretty, fast, and easy Cheap Date,…