In 2007 I was lucky to go on a trip to Japan with my aunt Chris. Chris was one of the first people to teach me how to sew, and I was happy to go with her. We joined a "group" there (not quite sure you can call it a tour) who went around and looked at different textile processes in Kyoto and the surrounding area. This was the best trip I have ever been on in my life and I had so much fun. I realized I started this blog the fall after I got back, so I never shared this memorable experience.
We ate so much good food, I blew a ton of money on clothes and cute things, and on top of that we got to go to different dying workshops. We did two or three indigo workshop - we had to get all suited up in boots and smocks to dye, it was a very messy process! The most memorable workshop for me was in Ohara, were we learned natural vegetable dying techniques. We boiled vegetables and other plants, and then used that to dye a scarf or piece of clothing. Right after I got back I swore I was going to work there someday; the small town was nestled in between huge rice paddies and mountains.
After visiting Ohara and Kyoto, Chris and I separated from the group and went to Osaka to visit my cousin Maho (well I call her my cousin, she lived with my aunt for a year in Kansas, and we got pretty close!). Maho was going to a University in Osaka and we stayed with her in her dorm, which was a really fun time! She showed us all around Osaka, and I was totally blown away with how big this city was, it seemed so so much bigger than New York or any city I've been to.
My last semester of college I took a Japanese class, so now I know a little of the language, and it makes me want to go back so bad. I've considered going there for a year to teach English with Jesse (he speaks some Japanese as well) but I have a feeling it couldn't realistically happen for a few more years. And, I'd have to leave all my sewing behind temporarily, as there's no way to ship these heafty machines out there - thought I'm sure I could buy a small one to hold me over there. It would be the best time ever.
Right now I'm trying to take pictures of all of the craft books I got while I was there (re:the penguins below), I'll try to share them with you over the next week. I've already posted a few on flickr, but there are many more where they came from!