I’ve always had an affinity for Japan; the culture, the food and the fabric. I’ve wanted to visit ever since I was young and it’s a place that has continued to resided amongst my top five holiday destinations. I first discovered the wonder of Japanese fabric just after I started my quilting journey, at the same time as I discovered Heather Ross. Heather Ross lead me to Kokka and Kokka lead me to Echino. I knew from my first glance of this amazing collection that I’d found my perfect fabric. My next thought…how do I get my hands on this!
Over the following months, I began to appreciate the rarity of past Echino lines. People were hoarding this; stocking up and locking it away in a fire-proof chest under the bed. Google searches turned up some stockists here in the UK, though their selections were limited and highly over priced. Etsy had scrap packs and Ebay had snippets, but I
needed wanted NEEDED more. I knew I wouldn’t be going to Japan anytime soon, so the internet was my only option. With my limited success on English-language sites, I ventured into the alien world of .jp with little success. I couldn’t speak Japanese (unless you count karaoke, bonsai, haiku and sushi) and was worried what I’d stumble upon!
I moved onto different projects, yet Echino stayed at the back of my mind. Then, a few months ago, the craft club at my work asked if I’d teach them some patchwork at their next meeting. Of course I said yes and couldn’t believe my luck when a Japanese colleague of mine, who I’d had little interaction with up until that point, offered to pick up some fabric for me when she visited her parents in October. My first thought…ECHINO! After that, everything was easy. She found a great Japanese site, obviously having none of the troubles that had befallen me, and asked me to make a list. A list! A list of Echino! As easily as it would have been to order everything I knew there were weight constrictions; her suitcase was her own after all. She was going for a month, so after the order was placed I waited…and waited…and waited. Then some news; the package had arrived and it was securely packed into her suitcase. I was happy!
She returned a few days ago, with this…
Christmas had come early! That parcel wasn’t going to stay wrapped up for long.
The fabric was perfect! The colours are even better in real life; bold, bright, graphic designs coupled with insects, birds, trains and frames. I’m so happy that I finally got my hands on some of this. I can see this being used in so many future projects that I might have to re-stash! Any suggestions for blocks? What would you do with this great fabric?
Insects, Cherry, Piece, Acacia
Acacia, Insects, Cherry, Cockatiel
Peck, Dahlia, Woodland, Frame
Flower Bed, Ni-co, Frame, Train, Ni-co, Frame
Once I can draw myself away from this newest addition, I’ll fold it back up and attempt to find space for it amongst all this…wish me luck.