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Conversational Threads

Fabric Shopping in Japan

J.C. | Posted in Fabric and Trim on

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I am planning a trip to Japan. Will be visiting Tokyo, Nara, Kyoto, Osaka, Okayama and would appreciate any information anyone has on fabric shopping or kimono fabrics. Thank you.

Replies

  1. J.C. | | #1

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    I am planing a trip to Japan. Will be visiting Tokyo, Nara, Kyoto, Osaka and Okayama. Would appreciate any information anyone has on fabric shopping or kimono fabrics. Thank you.

    1. Lara | | #2

      *I lived in Japan for a year and have been to all of those places you named. There used to be few or no fabric stores per se (8 years ago). However, most department stores and K-mart equivalents seemed to feature a fabric department or section. There are specialty stores that sell kimono or yukata fabrics, but I believe you have to buy the full quantity of fabric needed for that article of clothing. In Nara, there used to be a knitting/quilting store in the shopping district that was pretty good. What I generally found was that fabric was very expensive and the quality not particularly good. You could buy fat quarters readily.

      1. nihon_no_cook | | #3

        *Unfortunately, Lara's message is true, true, true. Try visiting a "Mitsukoshi" Department store, or several, as some do and some do not have fabric sections. Even the stores that do sell fabrics generally stock mostly quilt-appropriate fabrics, and most of those seem to be imported from the US or other non-Asian locations.Most cities have at least one "bargain shopping area" (here in Nagoya it's Osu Kannon). Ours is a roofed outdoor shopping arcade that goes on for blocks and blocks. Stuck in amongst the cheap electronics stores and used American clothing emporiums are a few shops that seem to sell the materials to make kimono, and sell the finished ones, too. Try asking at your hotel where the cheap shopping is, and look there.Not exactly a sewer's dream, but I'm getting by.

        1. esther | | #4

          *After spending two years in Japan with millions of sewing ideas in my head, but alas,no machine in my house I collected tonnes of fabric. My most sucessful ventures were to the Toji temple market on the first Sunday of the month. Toji temple is in Kyoto. There is also a huge market on the 21st of each month at Toji.Wares for sale include everything you can imagine. I have several vintage kimonos and yukatas and 'tans'-a length of about 12m x.4m wide of linen, silk, cotton and polyester. please don't overlook the "obi" kimono belt, which can also be incorporated into wonderful vests or whatever...Perhaps I had the most fun haggling for a good deal in my broken Japanese. The prices were very reasonable and the hunt was a delight. I hope this will help any fabriholics in the land of the rising sun or those planning to visit.Esther

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