Celebrating Japanese Embroidery at Loop: Classes, Tools, and Kits
If there’s one thing that’s great about a yarn shop it’s the ability to bring together wonderfully creative people from all over the world to share their love of craft. At Loop we love to bring the best the world has to offer to our little corner of London, and it’s always a treat to scout out new finds.
Japan has long been one of our favourite places to go for inspiration. Over the years we’ve forged great friendships with many Japanese makers that have lasted over the years and the miles between us. And we’re all in luck, because over the next couple of months we have a wonderful line-up of visits and treats from some of the country’s very best crafters.
At the end of June, Rika Stein of Nona will be in the shop to teach Japanese Traditional Temari Stitching. Temari balls are decorations with geometric shapes stitched onto them that were traditionally given to children on new year’s day, but they make a beautiful and thoughtful gift to friends of all ages, or a wonderful addition to your own home. Starting with a traditional temari ball and hand-dyed cotton threads, you’ll learn this traditional Japanese stitching method and leave with your very own work of art.
On the same weekend as Rika’s Temari Workshop, we have a very special Cohana and Nona Pop-Up Event. Rika of Nona and the lovely creators behind Cohana will be in the shop on 24 and 25 June. Nona’s naturally dyed threads and Cohana’s exquisite tools are just to die for, and this is the best time to come see the full range and chat with the brilliant people who make them. No need to book, just come to the shop!
Then, in early July, Hikaru Noguchi will visit the shop to host another two sessions of her very popular Darning Workshops. These classes will focus on the “seed darn” and “honeycomb darn” (or blanket stitch) styles of darning, which are very useful for all kinds of textile damage. During the classes, which take place the morning of Sunday 2 July and the evening of Tuesday 4 July, you will be provided with threads and yarns to play with, but you are very welcome to bring your own as well if there’s something specific you’d like to use.
Speaking of dreamy creations by Hikaru Noguchi, we have more of her sought-after Darning Jellyfish in the shop. This ingenious design works well held in the hand or flat on a table, and the elastic band keeps your work secure no matter how you choose to stitch. Whether you’re embellishing your latest knit or mending the elbows on a worn-out jumper, this jellyfish will do the trick!
Off the back of Nami Horikawa’s sold-out class at Loop, we’re so happy to be able to offer several String Bag Kits, which Nami is kindly leaving behind for Loop customers. These kits will allow you to make your very own embroidered bag using sashiko stitching designed by Nami. The kits are available in five different styles and each one contains everything you’ll need to make a beautiful bag from scratch: A sashiko stitch pattern booklet with diagrams, instructions for how to assemble your bag, linen fabric with an easy-to-follow stitch design printed on it, high-quality sashiko thread, and a needle for stitching.
The Tomomi Mimura Workshop may be nearly sold out but we have another wonderful way to engage with this artist’s quirky methods. The Mimster Mosaic Embroidery Kit lets you try your own hand at Tomomi’s unique mosaic embroidery, which was inspired by the mosaics of Barcelona. Each kit contains all you’ll need to make a flat mosaic-style embroidered animal, including a linen cloth with a printed design, a needle, five colours of yarn, black and white thread, instructions and diagrams, and even an embroidery hoop that doubles as a frame when your piece is finished!
Finally, it may not be embroidery, but it’s definitely one of our favourite things to come out of Japan: Our lovely Osaka Scarf Kit featuring Ito yarns is a dreamy, soft, light-weight piece that’s truly perfect for any occasion. Available in a greyscale colourway or pastel “candy”, this versatile piece is the floaty wrap you’ve always wanted. Weighing in at less than 130 grams, all you’ll feel is warmth and softness. The kit includes five balls of Ito Sensai and the pattern for the Osaka Scarf. Enjoy!
Elsewhere in the Shop
Super sparkly Tonkin Embroidery Threads have landed in the shop and we’re totally wowed. These may be from a family-owned mill in France rather than Japan, but they’ll certainly add a little pizzazz to any of the incredible embroidery techniques our visiting experts will impart. A crimped polyester thread with a fine strand of lurex, this embroidery floss has a slightly puffy texture and won’t fray when stitched, unlike some other threads containing metallic elements.
Oooh we’re so excited about this new colour of Monahan Hand-Dyed Ribbon! We’ve loved these aged ribbons for years and can’t wait to play with this new hyacinth-blue hue. This ribbon is perfect for finishing touches on a project like the Oleander Lace Wrap or just to wrap an especially beautiful gift.
Cashmere may not be the first material that comes to most people’s minds when they think of summer, but summers at 1700m in the Himalayas of Kashmir often call for a bit of warming up. That’s why BC Garn’s Summer in Kashmir, a 90% cotton 10% cashmere blend, is actually the perfect yarn for summer (and all the other seasons too). Whether you’re battling chilly evenings at altitude or just the office air conditioning (brrr!) this yarn will do the job! Summer in Kashmir is brand new to Loop and we’re so happy to have it in 26 colours. Stop by the shop to feel how soft this yarn is, or just take our word for it and order online!
Coronation Bank Holiday Weekend
As a reminder, Loop will be open as usual over the coronation weekend. Our hours are: Saturday 6 May 11:30-5:30 and Sunday 7 May 12-5. We’ll also be closed as usual on Monday 8 and Tuesday 9 May.
See you in the shop!