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By Craft Trends Contributor, Gillian from the blog Dried Figs and Wooden Spools. Check out our Craft Trends board on Pinterest!

I’m new to the whole world of embroidery. To be honest, I spent a lot of years avoiding it like the plague, thinking it was old fashioned and not my style. But over the past two or three years I’ve fallen head over heels for the craft and have been working my way through learning different techniques and stitches. My current favorite? Sashiko. I wish I’d found it years ago. The simple, sparse lines appeal to my sense of style in a big way and even beginners (like me) can make some pretty stunning pieces. Sashiko is a style of embroidery from Japan that uses simple color combinations like blue and white, and basic, even stitching to create amazing patterns and textures. Great for stitchers of all ages, here are a few of our favorite sashiko projects and patterns.

Reversible Sashiko Placemats - The Purl Bee

Reversible Sashiko Placemats – The Purl Bee

Beautiful! Am I right? I love these reversible placemats with their simple cross sashiko stitching. While you could certainly make your own placemats from scratch to stitch onto, this would be a fantastic way to personalize a set of store-bought ones for a gift. I love the neutral tones there but these would be just as beautiful in the traditional navy and white, or maybe go for a color pop with red or green!

Sashiko Sampler Potholders - Design Sponge


Sashiko Sampler Potholders – Design Sponge

And speaking of color! Look at these pot holders! Who wouldn’t want these hanging on a hook in their kitchen or gracing their table to protect the surface from hot pots? The amazing thing here is that, other than the border, each features just two colors. One for the thread, one for the fabric. And yet, they have such a modern, colorful look. These are at the top of my to-make list right now!

Sashiko Emboridery Tutorial - The Purl Bee

Sashiko Embroidery TutorialThe Purl Bee

The secret to sashiko seems to be even stitches and spacing, especially when it comes to places where two lines meet. This diagram (and also this fabulous pattern!) are pushing me to up my game with sashiko and get some good stitching practice in.

Sashiko can be applied to so many projects – bags, clothing, knee patches, table runners – almost anything with a solid fabric for a background can be transformed with this beautiful style of embroidery. Have you tried sashiko yet? Send some photos of your projects our way so we can see what you’ve been up to! And check out these and other images on our Craft Trends Pinboard.

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This entry was posted in Craft Trends, Crafts, Embroidery, Needlearts, Sewing and tagged on by .

About Gillian

Gillian Grimm lives in Charlottesville, Virginia where she balances writing, cooking and crafts with eight chickens, two kids, a dog, a cat and a husband. As the daughter of a Journalist, she grew up all over the United States, switching schools, towns and newspapers every few years and loved every minute of it! She now works as a freelance writer, primarily in the craft industry but with a few forays into travel writing, narrative non-fiction and educational matters. Gillian was recently published in the literary journal the “The Northville Review”. You can find more of Gillian’s work at “Dried Figs and Wooden Spools”.

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