#H2016 indigo blue sashiko hanafukin panel 'juuji tsunagi' linked crosses
These pre printed panels from Olympus Thread Mfg. Co. are called 'hanafukin' with literally means 'flower cloth'. This one printed in grey on blue coloured narrow width traditional sarashi cloth (an easy to stitch traditional Japanese cotton cloth). Also available in white. 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) and make the panel up as a cushion, a bag or whatever you like.
Stitch with either a single strand of medium sashiko thread or a doubled fine sashiko thread. Marking a pattern like juuji tsunagi (linked cross) from scratch over a larger area takes time, but with this cloth, you are ready to stitch straight away. Kits contain a stitching guide (in Japanese) but it is pictorial and very easy to follow. Just keep your lines straight and stitch all the vertical lines first, then horizontal lines, then all the vertical ones. Lines are stitched back and forth across the panel. Make a stitch where there is a line on the fabric and leave a gap in between. All the lines are straight - you don't wiggle them around to 'step' around the pattern and there are no cross stitches involved! This hanafukin shows you exactly where to stitch.
To stitch jyuuji tsunagi all over this panel, I recommend a 100m skein of medium sashiko thread, or five 20m skeins of medium sashiko thread, or a 370m skein of fine sashiko thread (one of these would do at least two hitomezashi hana fukin). The medium thread can be used as a single strand but double the fine thread. The photo shows this pattern stitched in four different colours of fine sashiko thread, so you can see which line goes where.
Sarashi cloth is quite lightweight compared with other sashiko fabrics, but is very easy to stitch (even if you decide to go traditional and stitch through two layers), super absorbent and wears well. It is one of the fabrics traditionally used for kimono underwear!
Finished size approx 13in (33cm) square.
Marks wash out. NB - the marks have less contrast than my pre printed sashiko panels. The fabric is indigo colour, not natural indigo, so the colour won't run.
It is advisable not to press the printed area with a hot iron before stitching, as marks may resist washing out.
Designed and made by Olympus Thread Mfg. Co. in Japan.