Sashiko = Love

As predicted, it took me far too long to sew the finished Sashiko sampler into a simple pillow case. Sewing has that annoying rule – cut once, and you’re done – and it can be paralyzing at times. Fortunately, one fine weekend I got over it.

Pattern: Rickie’s Sashiko Pillow from the Purl Bee, using the white Hana-Zashi No. 12 sampler.

Your comments exactly mimicked my own feelings about this sampler. Josiane wrote, “I really like how the pattern reads in so many different ways: flowers, circles, flowing rivers,” and Punkin commented, “When I look at your embroidery I see circles but when I follow the colors I realize they are in waves. Fascinating.” Yup. That’s pretty much how this whole thing started: I kept looking at the Purl Bee photo and each second my eyes were seeing something different. And I definitely saw circles at first. It was so interesting; I had to make it!

Threads, etc.: as I mentioned, I just bought everything the Purl Bee told me to buy :). No creativity whatsoever. The one thing I did alter was to use a simple overlap closure for the pillowcase instead of a zippered one. Laziness was one reason, but mainly I don’t like hardware (zippers, buttons) on my pillowcases.

The Robert Kaufman tencel linen I used for this project was amazing. Crisp and textured, yet soft and drapey. It pressed exceptionally well, and stood up to a seam ripper like a champ. I won’t even mention the beautiful color! It was also my first time sewing with 100% cotton thread. Such tight, crisp stitches, and no complaints from my sewing machine!


To those of you considering Sashiko, I say, just give it a try! Buy a sampler and some threads, and you’ll find that it’s remarkably simple. The little plump stitches will win you over in a heartbeat ;).


30 thoughts on “Sashiko = Love

  1. Maria

    Thanks a lot!!! Just what my sewing room needs is more fabric. grin! What a very, very cute pillow! I resisted when I saw this on Purl Bee. Now I must try to resist it some more!!!

  2. Virginia

    It’s really beautiful! I love the Purl Bee (and live close to both of the Purl stores, lucky me. I’m going on my lunch break tomorrow!)

    You did an amazing job. Yeah, the cutting thing on sewing is a little nerve wracking.

  3. Brianna

    What a beautiful result. My friend gave my a sashiko kit after she returned from Japan and it’s been sitting in my drawer for about a year…you’ve inspired to perhaps bring it out and work on it this spring.

  4. Bertha

    Oh my gosh, I didn’t even notice that they weren’t actually circles until you pointed it out! Waves! So cool!

  5. Trinity

    Kathy! It is gorgeous. And, I know what you mean about the paralyzing effect of sewing. I bought pillow forms and fabric at least 2 years ago and still haven’t worked up the nerve to turn them into pillows.

  6. Samina

    That is really eye-catching. As others mentioned, I keep trying to follow one of the circles & realize that there’s so much more to it. I keep trying to convince myself that I don’t want to go there, but I’m losing that battle!

  7. WendyBee

    Dooooon’t! Don’t show me new irresistible projects with yummy materials when I have so many other things going and I’m trying to work out of my stash! (If you were my sister, I’d go and tell Mom….)


  8. Kathy dlS

    I loved the kit the first time you posted it. I immediately went to Purl Bee and they were out of the threads. This provided a reason not to purchase it! Now you go and show the finished product and I know I must try to purchase again! If the supplies are there, then it will be added into my to do, and if some are missing, the Gods will have shined down on me and told me “You don’t need ANOTHER project! LOL.

  9. Sherri Butler

    This is lovely! The lime backing finishes it off beautifully. And since I would love to make one of these, it raises the painful question: where does one learn to sew if one lives in the boonies and there are no teachers? I learned to knit from books, but sewing seems too complex to learn that way. Any ideas?

  10. Erin

    Everybody has already said it, but the pillow is beautiful! The lime backing makes the other colors just POP!

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