#109 'cumulus cloud' designer hanafukin panel
This designer panel is by Hitomi Fujita for QH Textiles. Her stunning original designs take hanafukin panels in a new direction, while staying traditional. Hand printed in Japan.
It is a 'hana fukin' with literally means 'flower cloth' and printed on indigo blue coloured narrow width traditional sarashi cloth (an easy to stitch traditional Japanese cotton cloth). Each panel is supplied in one piece with a plain area the same size attached, because they are designed to be stitched through both layers and the edges turned in to make a little cloth, but you can stitch the printed layer separately (as I often do). They may be stitched with a doubled or single thread (or a mixture of both, for an interesting effect), in white or using coloured threads. Any of my medium sashiko threads would be ideal for these panels.
These hand printed designer panels are more expensive than the other hanafukin I sell, but the patterns are so beautiful, I wanted to start selling them! I have more more designs by Hitomi Fujita in stock, including larger panels..
Sashiko Cloth by QH Textiles (Australia)
Printed with water-soluble ink - marks wash out
Composition : 100% Cotton
Individual Cloth Size : Approx. 30cm x 60cm (Finished size : 30cm x 30cm)
About Sarashi cotton -
Sarashi cloth is quite lightweight compared with other sashiko fabrics, but is very easy to stitch, super absorbent and wears well. It is one of the fabrics traditionally used for kimono underwear! The second photo shows a comparison between these panels and those by Olympus Thread Mfg. Co., which are most of the other hanafukin I sell. This QH Sarashi fabric is a slightly finer weave, although the stitch length is about 3mm (the same as my Olympus panels), and is the one in front in the photo. The fabric shown both plain and with 5mm dots is the Olympus fabric. The shade of blue is also very slightly different (it actually looks more extreme in the photo than in real life). For a quilt or other project using hanafukin panels, you could mix the two brands and the colour difference would be minimal. If however, you want an exact colour match with all the panels, please just use hanafukin designs from one brand.
Hanafukin cloths are traditionally stitched through two layers of fabric (the second layer is the plain section) but can be stitched just through one if you want to add wadding and quilt the panel after finishing the sashiko stitching. For 'quilt as you go', the plain section can be used as a backing. Black wadding is recommended, because it doesn't show or beard through the fabric.
To stitch through two layers, the cloth can be stitched all round and bagged out before stitching the sashiko; stitched across the short ends with right sides together, then the sashiko stitched, and finally the two selvedges turned in on each other and ladder stitched together; or the edges tucked in using a butted finished and stitched all round. Any of these can also be done after the sashiko is stitched, if you don't want the back of your stitching to be visible.
In addition to simply stitching the whole panel in medium white sashiko thread, you can experiment with different colours and thread thicknesses.
Each cloud section could be stitched in a different colour, either going for more natural 'sky' shades (blues, turquoises, white, grey) or going more colourful ('natural' motifs like clouds are often depicted in other colours in Japanese textiles). The top of each cloud could be stitched in white or yellow ochre sashiko thread as a contrast. Whatever colours you introduce, white will always dominate your sashiko stitching, because it has the most contrast with the dark blue fabric.
Try stitching the top edge of the cloud motifs with a doubled medium sashiko thread for a bolder effect, with a single thread filling in the various patterns. Or combine colour with doubled and single threads.