Denim-like Patchwork & Herringbone

A faux design fabric that will broaden your sewing possibilities

Continued from our last column, a denim-like fabric is here again, featuring patchwork and herringbone designs. The Patchwork, with pieces of different denim motifs in various examples, can add a sense of presence to a simple creation. The Herringbone can be enjoyed as a “wearable denim”, as well as for chic and stylish items.

Denim Patchwork  H10100-100 #10 Canvas

Denim Patchwork is a very realistic faux denim-style #10 canvas. The design was created by scanning a picture of cut-up sections of vintage jeans from a thrift store. Even a simple bag will make an impact with this fabric’s intricate design. You can turn a basic apron into something stylish.

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Runlala Rabbit Tote Bag

Size: about 32cm (l) x about 25cm (w)

A pop fluorescent fabric, Runlala Rabbit is featured for this tote bag. Utilizing a cotton/linen canvas texture, a roomy and large bag is created. Pink dots in neon color will surely attract attention. With wider gussets, the bag can hold many items. It is also perfect as a shopping bag for everyday purchases.

Design & Work: Kokka Fabric

Fabric shown for this design:
(Outer fabric A)P37900-900 (A)

□ Outer fabric Pattern A 40cm x 110cm or wider
□ Outer fabric Pattern B 10cm x 110cm or wider
□ Lining fabric 50cm x 110cm or wider
□ Fusible quilt batting 60cm x 90cm or wider
□ Tape for handles 100cm x 4.5cm wide


Click here for Sewing Instructions (PDF format / A4 size)

Inspiration 94
Report on judging for the 4th Kokka Print Textile Competition


Do you know that KOKKA, which runs this blogging site, has actively recruited new talent and has collaborated with young designers who potentially bring fresh ideas to the textile industry?

KOKKA, the leading printed textile manufacturer in Japan, organizes “Kokka Print Textile Competition ~ Inspiration” every other year, aiming to discover a new field of textile on the concept of “by KOKKA x future textile designer”.
Natsuki Camino, who was the winner for the last competition in 2013, has launched her own textile line “Törten” from KOKKA. Currently, Törten is one of the most popular textiles among fabric retailers throughout Japan.
On July 30, 2015, KOKKA and the jury announced the first prize, runner-up, and 7 honorable mention winners for the fourth competition held this year. (Please see here for details.)
Here, we are showing the jury and their judging process for the competition.

The jury was composed of five members, who are all distinguished textile designers in Japan;
Reiko Sudo, Masaru Suzuki, Masashi Arita, Masahiro Tobita and Makiko Minagawa. They took time out of their hectic schedules to take part in the judging process. The judges are in favor of our intention to give a chance to those who are pursuing design careers or want to be involved in textile industry.

Reiko Sudo (left) and Makiko Minagawa were looking at each single the submission.


(From front) Masaru Suzuki, Masafumi Arita and Masahiro Tobita


“Overall, Scandinavian style seemed to be really popular among participants.” “More undergraduates and young designers applied this time.” These are the two main trends that every judge felt after reviewing this competition.

While 166 participated in the last competition, there were 387 entries this time! The exponential increase of submissions amazed the judges. In addition, there was an increase in the quality of artwork.

According to a judge, this “Inspiration” is the single competition for print textile design in Japan and a rare opportunity for those who aim to be a textile designer. The phrase, “Just one in Japan” makes us aware of the huge responsibility of this competition.

The Textile Award Department of KOKKA recently made a statement; “We received a large number of submissions for the 4th competition. While witnessing the judging process, we realized that every artwork submitted was incredible. It was very difficult for the jury to cull the finalists. All of us felt an intense need to create more opportunities for aspiring designers. We will continuously make an effort to keep Kokka Print Textile Competition opened to anyone with fresh and creative ideas for the industry in the future.”

The award ceremony will be held on August 22. Don’t miss our follow-up report about it.

Zipper Pouch with Gathering

Size: 13cm (l) 20cm (w) 4cm(d)

This zipper pouch is made with a cotton/linen canvas fabric from Ellen Baker’s new collection, Monochrome. It has a refreshing, summery look with a blue stripe accent at the opening. Gathering creates fluffiness, giving more space inside than it looks. Famous blogger and hand craft artist, Mioko Sugino, aka komihinata, is sharing her creative idea.

Design & Work:Mioko Sugino

Fabric shown for this sample: ellen baker Monochrome JG42300-300 (B)

□ Fabric (Panel outer fabric): 30cm×30cm
(Opening outer fabric): 20cm×10cm
(Tag, Lining fabric): 50cm×30cm
□ Zipper: One piece (30cm)


We interviewed Mioko about her creation:
Kokka Fabric (KF): What did you think of the fabric you used for this project?
With simple design alignment, I thought this fabric would make a great combination with other fabrics. While it is monotone, the shaded color creates dimension and fun movement.
Even with the gathering, this solid fabric creates a three-dimensional look.

KF: Can you tell us any special elements or ideas that you incorporated into this creation?
The gathering is added to create a stocky silhouette. With gathering both inside and outside, you can put a lot of things in contrast to the size of the opening.

KF: What are some tips for making this pouch?
When attaching the zipper, you may find it slightly difficult as the fabric is gathered.
Try to place the gathering line perpendicular to the stitch line as you stitch.
Pressing it down using something with a tapered tip, like a stiletto, will be helpful.

KF: How should we use this pouch in everyday situations?
I combined it with a yellow fabric, which is a perfect match for blue.
This summery color combination will stand out if you match it with a lighter color item, like a white bag.

KF: Thank you very much, Mioko! Here are sewing instructions along with step by step photos from her. Enjoy crafting!

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Round Bottom Bucket Bag

Size: 20cm (bottom diameter) 25cm (h)

The bucket bag is made with Small Cranes, a folded-paper crane motif fabric from Ellen Baker’s latest collection, Monochrome. The bag’s round bottom creates a lovely plump shape when tied at the top. The contributor is Yuko Ohno, a famous blogger known as yu*yu from her “yu*yu’s Handmade Diary.”

Design & Work: Yuko Ohno

Fabric shown for this sample: ellen baker monochrome JG42400-400(B)

□ Fabric (Outer fabric, Handle): 70cm×50cm
(Lining fabric): 100cm×40cm
□ Interfacing: 10×50cm
(or Fusible tape: 90cm (2cm wide – finished measurement)
□ Twilled cotton tape: 90cm (2cm wide)
□ Waxed cord: 1.6m (0.4cm wide)
□ Lace: 55cm (1.9cm wide) and 50cm (1cm wide)


We interviewed Yuko about her creation:
Kokka Fabric (KF): What did you think of the fabric you used for this project?
Beautifully aligned, folded cranes looked impressive and I immediately came up with the idea of a bag for yukata (Japanese summer kimono). By using a dot motif fabric for the lining, it does not feel too Japanese and can also be used in an everyday setting.

KF: Can you tell us any special elements or ideas that you incorporated into this creation?
Double gauze is thin and easy to make a gathering. Taking advantage of these characteristics, I designed a drawstring bucket bag. A round bottom creates a lovely plump shape when tied at the top.

KF: What are some tips for making this bag?
While the bottom is round, it is not too difficult to sew as the diameter is large. When sewing the bottom, match four markings first, and then align another four (for a total of eight) and pin it. With this method, you can sew without misaligning it.

KF: How should we use this bag in everyday situations?
Though it is a bucket bag, it can certainly go well with yukata when the top is closed. It becomes a shopping bag with an open top. The size accommodates a wide wallet for everyday use.

KF: Thank you very much, Yuko! Here are sewing instructions along with step by step photos from her. Enjoy crafting!

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