Although I was really in Japan for some hardcore temari studies, I couldn’t resist the opportunity to have a look for some weaving courses. It’s hard not to fall in love with the exquisite and wonderful world of Japanese textiles, in particular the world of 西陣織 (nishijin ori), the intricate weaving behind the most luxurious of fabrics.
I’d done a weaving experience at the Nishijin Textile Factory where I made a scarf/table-runner hybrid with all the charm and textural properties of a bag of fleas. Past that, I haven’t had much luck finding short, drop-in weaving courses. That was until I had the opportunity to not only meet the creator of saori weaving but to study in her studio.
It has been far too long since I’ve had chance to update my blog thanks to a rather excessive amount of international travel. I’ve blogged before about the joys and tribulations of travel and how to try and find ways to stop all your craft projects getting lost in work-in-progress (WIP) oblivion while on the road but I really need to learn to take my own advice.
The worst part is I’m still not quite done with the anxious hours at airports. I have a few days of respite at home before the final leg starts. With any luck, I can get some sleep after that and I might finally be on the correct time zone and not jet lagged before New Year!
There is nothing quite like getting stuck into a new thing. You haven’t quite yet realised how impossibly hard it will be to reproduce all the maddeningly complex projects you’ve been eyeing up on Pinterest and you’re new enough that you’re pleased by any new creation, no matter how wonky the stitches or sad the seams are.
It was back in Kyoto, at the Nishijin Textile Centre, that I first had a go at weaving. Nishijin is the legendary textiles district that gives its name to Nishijin-ori, the fabric produced there. It is known for its quality and the incredibly intricate patterns and designs in the weave that are often used for highly elaborate obis. In more modern times, nishijin-ori is often used in neckties or gamaguchi, the metal clasp purses that are very popular in Japan.