27/04/2013: Almost May already! This year is going so fast!
02/04/2013: Happy Easter. I hope everyone had a fantastic weekend.
01/01/2013: Happy New Year!!
24/12/2012: Merry Christmas!!
13/11/2012: Getting hand-made presents ready for Christmas!!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Patchwork Classroom #71

パッチワーク 教室 No.71

Here is a closer look at one of my Japanese Mooks*. This is Patchwork Classroom Volume 71 which contained the beautiful Tea Set which I made in December last year.

Japanese Craft/Sewing mooks all tend to follow a similar format from my experience. The front half contains beautiful photographic images of all the projects with short descriptions (in Japanese) and a page number to the back section. This makes for a beautiful contrast to Australian magazines which tend to follow each project with the instructions. The Japanese magazines are more elegantly designed for browsing and admiring the projects within.

Inside the Magazine

The second half of the magazine contains the instructions for all the projects in sepia or black and white. There is also a lift out pattern sheet. This magazine is 114 pages with approximately 70 dedicated to project photos and advertising and 45 pages of project instructions. I counted 48 different projects and there is a heavy focus on bags and purses throughout this issue (approx 2/3) with only a few wall hangings and zakka** projects included.

The reason I chose this book is primarily because of its focus on bags. There is a treasure trove of bag designs within the magazine and a few of the styles show what the same bag would look like if you complete the patchwork, or the colours, or the quilting in a different way. This really helps you see the potential for customisation of the projects.

A point to remember is that these projects are usually designed for hand piecing and hand quilting and so the instructions are based around particular hand sewing techniques, however I don't see anything stopping you from using your preferred techniques with their patterns.

Example of Instructions Provided

If you are interested in Japanese magazines, but do not understand the language then you need not fear. Page numbers and measurements are all in standard western numerals while the instructions contain much more detailed diagrams than you would find in western craft magazines. If you take some time to explore your mook you will soon learn where to find the page reference for the instructions and how to skim through the written instructions and match characters to understand your fabric requirements and notions. I would recommend these magazines to intermediate quilters or sewers to avoid frustration unless you are fluent in Japanese.

Are you interested in this exact magazine. Buy it now on ebay. (I have bought from and recommend this seller, but I am not affiliated with them in any way)

* Mook - A hybrid between magazine and book.
** Zakka - Handmade household goods such as tableware or soft furnishings usually also charming or cute. This tea set would be considered "zakka".

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