How to stitch "Peaks" Sashiko Sampler by Textile Lab
How to stitch "Peaks" sashiko design
This is how to stitch the Kugurizashi Sashiko kit called Peaks. I've written it to supplement the Japanese language instructions and stitching diagrams that come with the pre-printed fabric.
You can buy the pre-printed ready to stitch cotton cloth, sashiko threads and needles at A Threaded Needle.
This is a very good first project for trying the kugurizashi sashiko technique.
Before I start the stitching instructions, here is some general information:
WHAT ARE HITOMESASHI AND KUGURISASHI SASHIKO?
If you already know this, slide down the page to the step by step instructions :-)
Hitomezashi is a sashiko stitching style. The designs are made up of single stitches in straight lines across the fabric. The stitching covers the fabric much more densely than the Moyozashi sashiko (large sashiko designs).
Kugurizashi is a more advanced two part sashiko stitching technique which involves using the Hitomezashi stitching as the base layer to weave threads under to create beautiful patterns and textures.
Things you need to know before you start this sashiko sampler: All the sashiko samplers from Olympus Japan are printed on the same sarashi-momen cotton fabric (Olympus Hana-fukin & Traditional Sashiko, La bouquetiere, & Textile Lab Ayufish int. Samplers). This traditional 100% cotton Japanese fabric is woven on the traditional width narrow looms. This means it has selvedges on two edges. The 12" x 12" design is printed on a 26" length of the fabric and you are meant to fold the unprinted half to the back of the printed half and stitch through both layers.
The printed design will disappear completely in water so keep it dry until you are finished. Also do not iron before it has been washed.
If you would like your cloth to have finished edges, fold the cloth in half with the printed side inside and stitch it together about 5/8" from the raw edge. (I use a running stitch and sashiko thread)
Now, turn the cloth right side out (print on the top) and finger press the seam flat (no ironing!)
Smooth the fabric layers out, then stitch the two rows around the outer edges.
Before we leave this general information section here are two photos (borrowed from a different sampler) to review two sashiko basics:
1. Putting many stitches on the sashiko needle at a time. This will give you straighter more even stitching, and it goes along much faster.
2. leave a loop on the back of the fabric when you carry a thread . This is important.
This is basically how all hitomezashi sashiko designs are built. You stitch all the vertical lines, then the horizontal lines, then the diagonals going one way, and then the diagonals going the other way. One you grasp that, you can stitch all the hitomesashi sashiko patterns without instructions!
The next step is the kugurizashi sashiko, which is weaving under the stitching part of the design.
When all the vertical stitching has been completed, start the weaving. To do this, start with a small knot on the back of the fabric and using the needle eye end of the needle, pass under the stitches as shown here. The fabric has a few of these printed for you to follow but it is up to you how many rows you feel will look right :-)