Friday, January 15, 2010

Fabric and shopping Kyoto - Part 2

On our second day in Kyoto I stumbled on more crafty / fabric places anyone travelling here might like to know about. It was not always obvious what the shop was called so I will give you directions and photos so you can recognise it when you get there. And I hope that all those of you who leave comments saying my photos make you want to go to Japan actually get here someday!
First, this shop which sells rubber stamps with Japanese themes and designs from calligraphy to picture of Geisha. Walk down the pedestrianised street Teramachi from the north ( by City Hall) and it is on your left. Further down Teramachi you will see a sign over head for the Nishiki market. This will gets its own post in due course but towards the end of the market ( past many fish stalls) is a shop on the left selling kimono fabric by the meter.
Another option is to buy what at first I thought were hemmed fat quarters which are fairly ubiquitous. Now, why would anyone hem fat quarters. Eventually it dawned. Not fat quarters - Japanese gift wrapping cloths! But you know - fabric squares are fabric squares! Just by example, this shop is on Shijo-Dori, on the North side between Starbucks and Kawaramachi Station.

We walked from here to the old area of Pontocho which is an alley way of old houses - now lost of bars and restaurants, parallel to the river which was the old gay area of Kyoto. We walked over the river bridge at Keihan-sanjo station, along Sanjo-Dori and turned south down Higashioji-dori. this is not really a tourist area but it served as a way to get to Gion ( which will also get its own post in due course). However, on the right just down Higashioji there was a small fabric shop selling Kimono offcuts and I finally found ones I liked and which went with the fabric I bought in Toyko and it was only Y400! (About £3). This nice lady owner threw a scrap of shibori in for free too when I admired her curtain made of it.

These are the two fabrics with some thread I went back to Nomura Tailor in Taramagachi for.

And for identification purposes, the outside of the shop.

In the old restored area of Gion between Koadji temple and Kiyomizudera there are lots of shops selling the wrapping cloths and other product made of textiles. Or, there is this one which also sells kimono lengths and paper sheets. It is in Shin-kyogoku arcade which is the mall that runs parallel to Teramachi. If you go north from Shijo-Dori is it very soon on your right.

And just a little further up - another stamp shop again with Japanese themes stamps.

For patchwork magazines you want the Foreign language Institute on the north side of Shijo-Dori. Don't be beguiled - there are no foreign language books in this shop ( unless I suppose you view Japanese as a foreign language.!) Not should you assume that magazines such as Patchwork Tushin will be downstairs with the magazines. Nope. think like the Japanese! Up on the first floor with the patchwork books. (About the middle of the store, stand facing the street, top shelf.) And books/ magazines about knitting and yarns and embroidery too - lots of pictures and diagrams so the language does not matter too much. I did buy one book here ( and I might well go back for the one I resisted becuase I have checked and it is not as I thought possible readily available online!) but all in all I did well just looking today!


Feather on a Wire said...

So glorious, it looks wonderful.

Kristin L said...

Love the fabric thread cobo you went back to teh tailor for. Very subtle and nice.