Saturday, September 18, 2021

Tokyo Handmade Festival

Yesterday I had the great pleasure of meeting Julie F (My Quilt Diary) at the Tokyo Dome, to see a small quilt show together.  We hadn't seen each other in person since the Quilt Festival in January 2020.  

This "Tokyo Handmade Festival" was like a little taste of the old Quilt Festivals. 

The only hassle was navigating quite a long, inefficient, almost maddening process of walking past the whole length of the line to get my ticket, then even further for us to fill out forms with our name and phone number, then a walk all the way back along the line, to the end of the line.... then... wait in line, etc. etc. - all of that took a long time, maybe 45 minutes or even an hour?  

The show itself was very small but lovely, and not too crowded. 

Atsumi embroidery: 

I adore this whimsical alphabet: 

Kathy Nakajima's Hawaiian quilts: 

A fun and rather fittingly busy and garish Halloween exhibit: 

Some interesting BORO pieces: 

And beautiful work from the Tokyo-based artist Lindzeanne: 

Last but not least, the NHK Partnership quilts, all along the perimeter.  It took some sleuthing but we found our individual blocks:

My block is the bottom left one below in orange, yellow, green: 

And Julie's beautiful cardinal is here, top right: 

There were many quilts on display - Queenie's block is second to the right from Julie's cardinal, on the other side of the black whale.  A lovely earth surrounded by her trademark embroidery and with a tiny Swedish flag. 


And here is Tanya's block at the bottom right  - the "Love the Earth" block.  I thought this grouping of four was terrific and really conveyed the "love the earth" theme.  

It was fun to peruse all the Partnership quilts. 

Next, we split up for 30 minutes to explore the vendor area, and I stayed mostly on the perimeter, avoiding the center areas that really were too crowded.  

I focused on three or four vendors, and purchased several beautiful pieces of vintage indigo (and some soft brown and red) as well some newly woven kasuri (not pictured) to use in more indigo sofa throws.    

Ahhhhh this makes me happy: 

Lastly Julie and I got some bubble tea and sat outside catching up for awhile before saying farewell and walking in opposite  directions to our respective train stations!  Thanks for the nice outing Julie!  I hope we can gather together with Queenie and Tanya too at some point in the not so distant future! 



  1. Enjoying the work of others is so inspiring especially when you can do it in person with a friend.

  2. How wonderful that you got to attend this show!! The exhibits look interesting and the indigo you purchased looks fabulous! I'm jealous! :) My own guild is putting on its annul show in less than a month and I can't wait!!

  3. I am so happy you got an outing....and a textile outing...and an outing with a friend..wonderful!!!

  4. Well this was a fun little tour around the show. Especially enjoyed the circles quilts and of course your lovely vintage indigo pieces. Always a good day when you can get together with a friend!

  5. What a fun festival and quilt show. What a fun outing with a friend. I'm so glad you were able to go and share photos with us. So much beauty there. I love the alphabet, too, and am amazed at the boro pieces. I think it's interesting that some of the signs were in English and Japanese and some in only Japanese. The Partnership Quilts -- just wow! The vintage indigo pieces are delightful.

  6. Looks like a delightful show with a great deal of variety. I hope once you got inside the frustration of the entrance process was forgotten as you enjoyed all of the displays. And it was great that you could meet up with a friend to share the experience.
    I really love those indigos--they are beautiful!

  7. Oh, what a lot of lovely pictures you were able to take! Isn't it funny, that after all that close looking, our blocks were together. The most maddening part was walking all that way to get that form to fill out,and then find they had begun to pass them out to others in the line. Thanks for the tea break with time to catch up ... though never enough.

  8. It is as if I had been there, so good are your photos. Of course I was not able to meet up with you and Julie, which I would have loved.
    Thank you for updating your blogpost.
    You found some beautiful pieces of indigo for your stash.

  9. While reading this on my laptop I had to use my "flat phone" to look up BORO, Very interesting! I'm exploring new things this way! Thanks!

  10. So much lovely eye candy! Thanks for sharing your adventure!

  11. Bubble tea and indigo fabrics, how fun. I as always admire your stamina and patience in dealing with local restrictions in Japan.

  12. I was living vicariously through your steps at the show! It's been ages since I've been to one and this really reminded me that one day soon we will hopefully be doing the same. Fun too that you were able to find your work.

  13. Oh how marvelous! I'm so happy to see people out and seeing art in person.
    Loved the Hawaiian quilts and the Boro, well all of it really. It is so great to see so many different creative art forms.
    All of your blocks are charming!

  14. Oh, what a lovely show! So many different items on display. Love your little purchases. That would make me happy, too!

  15. Thank you for the wonderful tour. I am sad I missed the outing with you and Julie. I hope we'll be able to meet up on Zoom at the very least!

  16. What a fantastic venture for you! Lots of textile thrills for sure. The Partnership quilts are absolutely lovely!

  17. Oh what fun! Just to be able to see quilts in person is a treat, but these are sensational. I had to look up Atsumi Embroidery. These pieces are beautiful! And, of course I always love the Boro pieces. Thanks for sharing.


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