A few weeks ago, a very good friend of mine who of late lives in the Philippines was visiting Osaka, Japan. He called to ask if there was anything I wanted while he was there. Heh heh. What a question! Good Japanese silk fabric is exquisite, so I happened to mention that if he happened to be visiting shops that happen to sell silk fabric, I wouldn’t be opposed to a little snippet.
The likelihood that he would visit fabric stores while traveling in Japan (work-related travel, mind you) was pretty slim, and in fact, I didn’t want to impose at all, so I begged that he wouldn’t go out of his way for such a thing.
Well. He did. He actually went hunting for some snippets, and sent some photos to prove it. Four days after our phone conversation, a package arrived… with some gorgeous silk in it. So, vicariously, let’s enjoy his shopping experience for silk fabric in Japan.
This is the shopping complex in Osaka, where his guide kindly took him to find a fabric store that sells silk.
And this is the shop where he found the silk.
A kimono on display in the shop. I love the obi! (The sash…)
His courteous and obliging guide helps him make decisions as they shop through the bolts of silk ….
… and there’s lots of them!
They settle on some plain silk, suitable for embroidering, and have it cut by the shop assistant. Plain? Oh my goodness. The picture doesn’t do the color justice – it’s a gorgeous blue dupioni, a cross between almost a royal blue and (if it’s possible to imagine) a periwinkle.
In fact, there were three cuts of silk – a soft shell pink, an ivory, and the blue – all dupioni – but what dupioni!
While dupioni bought here in the US at chain fabric stores is overly slubby and very thin, and often leans towards the shiny side, this silk is heavier, and the slubs that are characteristic of dupioni are very fine, and hardly visible, giving the fabric an incredibly smooth hand. The fabric has a very subtle sheen. The weight is wonderful – perfect as a needlework ground fabric.
I was completely touched by the generosity of my good friend and his obliging guide, that they would take the time and effort to ferret out such gorgeous fabric and send it along to me!
So here I have a few meters of silk, and they are just begging for me to do something with them, but I haven’t made any decisions yet. I’m entirely open to suggestions! I keep looking at the blue and wondering about a metal thread project…… or maybe white silk thread?