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Giveaways Japanese Craft Books

Book Flip Through – Needle Felted Kittens (plus GIVEAWAY!)

February 2, 2019

Today’s review is another Japanese craft book that has been translated into English by Nippan IPS. It’s really amazing and I’ve never seen the likes of this level of artistry before. You really have to see it to believe it! The book sample was provided by Nippan IPS and they are also generously sponsoring a giveaway prize which I will talk about at the end of the post. Let’s have a look at the book first!

The title of the book is called Needle Felted Kittens, by Hinali, a needle felting artist. Hinali is a self taught needle felting artist who started felting in 2011, and participated in exhibitions at the Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum. After her creations were shown on TV, they quickly went viral and she’s super popular on IG. You can follow her on her Instagram account @hinali_felt for all of her felting creations. There are even some videos of her making the felt kittens and it’s really fascinating to watch!

The book starts off with a photo collection of needle felted cats that Hinali has made over the years. Then there is this page called Hinali’s cats, which I thought was a series of photos of her cats in real life that inspired her to make such life-like cats, before I took a closer look and realized they were actually needle felted cats. Hmm.. or are they are real cats? I can’t tell!!!

So how does one go about getting started on making such life-like cats? The book begins with the most basic techniques, and introduces you to all the materials and tools you need, how to blend wool to create different colors.  There are even detailed photos to show you how to to hold a needle and prick wool correctly. Really beginner friendly.

There are also additional tips for creating very fine details, including how to create a cover to stop pricking your own fingers (those of you who have tried felting must have jabbed yourself before – like me! :P) as well as creating a longer needle to reach hard to reach areas.

There are also tips for cutting wool tufts, a Q&A section about very frequently encountered problems during felting and how to resolve them. I would say this is a very very detailed book with lots of hinali’s own needle felting techniques that will help you create not just kittens, but any other object you want to create.

The book then progresses to the projects you can make from this book. And the projects cover a variety of cats with different fur patterns and poses, so that you create your very own variation with your own cat! The projects include

orangeandwhite

Orange and white tabby kitten (in a sitting down pose)

scottishcathalfsitting

Scottish Fold Cat (half-sitting up)

tortoiseshellsitting

Tortoiseshell Cat (sitting catloaf style)

tortoiseshelllyingdown

Tortoiseshell Point Siamese Cat (sitting) / Tortoiseshell-and-White Cat (lying down)

catsinframes

Cats with just their Faces , Cats inside Frames

sampleinstructions

Each of the project comes with really detailed step by step photos, plus all descriptions of the steps in English, so there is absolutely no problem understanding it!

If you are a cat owner or lover, or just want to try your hands at making one of these lifelike needle felted kittens, how about a giveaway?

GIVEAWAY

Want to learn how to make your own felted kitten? You might have a chance to win a copy of this book – 
NEEDLE FELTED KITTENS by Hinali

generously sponsored by the publisher NIPPAN IPS!

This giveaway will run on my Instagram account only. Hop on over to take part!
IG page – https://www.instagram.com/japanesesewingbooks/

The giveaway will run for a week from today till 9th February (Sat) 0900hrs (UTC +8)

 WHERE TO BUY

Can’t wait for the giveaway and want to buy own your own copy? Needle Felted Kittens (in English) is available on Amazon.com (Aff link)

buy3._V192207739_

Giveaways Japanese Fabrics

Christmas Sewing in October and a Modes4U Giveaway!

October 6, 2017

Just as I was feeling sad about the slowing down of Japanese sewing book new releases that always happen in the last quarter of the year, I get excited once again, by sponsors who feel the festive mood (in advance) and want to sponsor GIVEAWAYS for you all!

Today our lovely sponsors from Modes4U.com are giving away 4 very nice Cosmo fabrics of 1m each.  It is a lovely mix of double gauze, canvas with gold metallic embellishment and cotton fabrics. One lucky winner will get ALL of them! But more about that later. Let me talk about my Christmas sewing first!

Is it too early to start sewing for Christmas? Well, after factoring in shopping time + shipping time + procrastination time + sewing time, I think it’s just about right!

For my own little Christmas project this year, I wanted to go green. Not the color green, but that I wanted to make my own fabric Christmas ornaments and reusable gift “wraps”.  I found the perfect fabrics just for that!

kokkacreambearchristmas

This fabric is a Oxford fabric from Kokka, featuring colorful animals and Christmas ornaments. There are a few other colorways for this fabric but I love the different shades of blues. I love how it deviates from the traditional red and greens, yet retaining the Christmassy feel. Click on this link to find more Kokka fabric on Modes4U. There are also lots of non-Christmas fabrics of course, and they will make great gifts for the avid sewist / crafter / fabric hoarder in your family!

However, I also wanted a pop of red, as a contrast color, for both “wrapping” presents and as matching co-ordinates to my blue/turqoise/navy ornaments. I didn’t want it to be too focussed on Christmas motifs too, so I picked this really cute print with white bears and snowflakes on it.

minnymuuwhitebears

This fabric is printed by Lecien and is designed by koko seki for the Minny Muu collection. There are lots of Lecien fabric on Modes4U too.

I paired it with some left over small bits of trim from past projects and here are the results of my Christmas sewing.

christmasornamentsontwine

christmasornamentsonframe

christmasgiftpouches

Making the ornaments didn’t require much fabric, so I made these drawstring pouches which will be great as gift “wraps” No need for paper + tape/ribbons. Best of all, it can be reused for keeping small items like hair accessories, earphones in your bags. No waste!

christmasdrawstringpouches

Looking plump when filled up and ready for gifting!

See, Christmas fabrics and sewing decorations don’t have to be all reds and greens. But if you do like the traditional prints, you will be able to find them too at Modes4U. They have lots of Christmas fabrics, not just from Japanese brands like Kokka and Cosmo, but also the from Michael Miller, Andover, Robert Kaufman to name a few. You’ll have to explore their Christmas section. It won’t be easy because there are so many to choose from! I also love the fact that there is free international shipping above 60€ / US$70 / £55 which is quite easy to achieve because not only do they sell fabrics, they sell all kinds of cute stationery, squishies, plush toys, bento boxes etc from Japan.  So you can really do all your Christmas shopping here.

So now, for the GIVEAWAY!

Modes4U.com will be giving away 4m of fabric to one lucky winner! These are the fabrics you stand to win. There is a good mix of fabric types – double gauze, cotton fabrics and even canvas! All the fabrics are from Cosmo Textiles from Japan. This will be a good chance for those of you who have always wanted to try a variety of Japanese fabrics.

modes4ucosmofabric

Here’s what you have to do.

1) Comment below to tell us your favorite item from Modes4U.com.

2) Extra chances for readers who follow Modes4U or Japanese Sewing Books on the following pages. Please also include your FB/IG id when commenting below so that we can identify you and award you extra chances for winning!

Modes4U Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/modes4u
Modes4U Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/modes4ucom
Japanese Sewing Books Facebook page : http://www.facebook.com/JapaneseSewingBooks
Japanese Sewing Books Instagram : http://www.instagram.com/JapaneseSewingBooks

3) Extra chances for people who blog about this giveaway and include link to this giveaway post (right click and copy link address to this blog page) + Modes4U.com. If you add this to your blog, please leave your blog address+link to your post in the comment below so that we can see it too!

This giveaway will run for two weeks from today 6th October- 20th October 10pm (Singapore time). Winners will be announced on the following day 21st October right here on this post. I will also be notifying the winner via the email you have used to comment below, so please do check your emails! If the winner fails to respond within 48hrs, another winner will be picked.

ETA : The Winner of this Giveaway is Jeannette Makad! Congratulations Jeannette, I will be contacting you via your email for your mailing details. Thank you all once again for participating!

Finished Projects Giveaways

Sew Good Knits and a Giveaway!

September 29, 2017

Toddlers grow at an alarming pace. Much faster than I can sew. And can you believe it I have actually depleted my knit stash from Japan. I can actually buy and ship them in from Japan but knits are bulky, and most shipping forwarders charge by volumetric weight. So even if the price of the knits are reasonable, by the time I get it shipped to me it may be double the original price. So… I have been on the lookout for knits. Good quality knits that are comfortable and can withstand the abuse from a toddler ;P It is hard to find nice prints for boys too. There are lots of pastels and pinks and unicorns out there but I the range for boys is limited to cartoonish cars, superheroes, and I usually don’t like the bright and gaudy colors they come in. Then I came across Sew Good Knits, a Facebook group for preordering European knits. They are based in Singapore so it’s extremely convenient for me (don’t worry, they ship internationally too!)

They specialize in knit fabrics that are made in Europe, most of which are certified organic according to Oekto or GOTS standards, which is more reassuring given that I am buying them for my toddler. To be honest, I have been a little hesitant in ordering because they are quite pricey. I do know that it is due to the quality and I have heard lots of raves from others in the group who are big fans and vouch for the quality of the fabric. But I held back until…….

diggershirt

I saw this fabric! My boy is totally into diggers right now, and dump trucks, and tractors…. the list goes on. So when I saw this, I fell in love instantly. I knew he would love it and I love it too because the print is so simple and well, no gaudy colors!

tshirtbook

I used the raglan tshirt pattern from the above book – Knitwear for kids. This is one of my most frequently used book for knits. There are step by step photos for some of the patterns, including this raglan tshirt.  Read my review here. Buy from amazon.com or cdjapan (aff links)

Back to Sew Good Knits. So I ordered a couple of prints, and guess what…. they were kind enough to send me some extra fabrics for me to sew and blog about. Yay! Will work for fabrics anytime.

harempants

This print was is perfectly co-ordinating with the gravel on the digger shirt don’t you think? I immediately decided it was going to be a pair of harem pants. This harem pants pattern is modifed from an old issue of Cotton Friend. It’s no longer in print though so I don’t think I’ll tempt you by posting it here. 🙂

diggerset

Look at the complete outfit! So adorable right?

And like how the others had raved about it, the fabric is really soft and amazing. It’s stretchy and soft and the color doesn’t fade after washing. I love it! The best part is, the knits are much wider than normal fabric widths, so even with a fat half, I can make a toddler shirt or a pair of pants/leggings out of it. With a full yard, I can make a whole outfit for him or even something for myself (the mint squares below is reserved for myself ;P)

sewgoodknits

Now I have a mini stash of Sew Good Knits!

 

I reached out to Celine, who is one of the founders of Sew Good Knits, to find out more about their little start up, as well as their big plans for the future.

Who are the founders of Sew Good Knits ?
Celine Khoo and Ruth Mak

What inspired the creation of Sew Good Knits?
The love for high quality, organic knits with interesting designs, especially some nice boy friendly designs! Euro knits fit the bill since they were still fairly uncommon locally. Also we were ourselves spending a lot on shipping buying from retailers based in the US who offered a variety of euro knit brands. 

What kind of fabrics do you carry in Sew Good Knits?
We specialize in knit fabrics that are made in Europe, most of which are certified organic according to Oekto or GOTS standards. Jersey and French Terry are the most common types of knits we bring in as we feel they are the most versatile. Some of our local customers may shy away from French terry as they think it’s warm for local weather but we try to ensure that the French terry we bring in is lightweight and suitable for the Singapore climate. 

We also carry ribbings in a variety of colours to complement the fabrics that we carry and we hope to be a one stop shop for sewists looking for materials for their next knit project. As the majority of our fabrics are made from organic cotton and through processes that are safe and good for the environment, they are very safe for babies and children. At the same time, the high quality of our fabric ensures ease of sewing because of the stability of the knit fabric as well as the longevity of the garment sewn. 

In the long run we would love to be the sole distributor for all euro knits but it is a challenging process given the small market here and also the sheer number of European designers. We would love to stock them all! 

Do you (or your co-founders) sew? if yes, what type of sewing do you do?
Ruth :  I own a handmade business that had been born out of the love of sewing. I sew apparel for myself and my children, and it’s quite fun to try and create certain looks for myself that I’ve never tried before. My boys have also learnt to appreciate that their mama-made items are truly unique to them and I may have created a problem for myself, as I’ve recently discovered that they are having a hard time giving up the ones they’ve clearly outgrown! 

Celine : I mainly sew for myself and my kids as currently with my youngest just starting to walk, my crafting time is limited. I love sewing apparel mainly as I find them most practical. I used to have a real fear of sewing knits as I thought them to be really challenging but now when I need a quick stress releasing project, knits are my go-to as they sew up so quickly on a serger and are just generally more practically for daily wear for kids!!! 

What are your future plans for Sew Good Knits?
We’re working on an online store, but progress has been painfully slow as we’re both mothers to 3 children each, and managing the pre-order group has been quite time consuming. We are keeping our options open with regards to including wovens in our inventory, especially if our suppliers offer these options as well, but knit fabric will still be our mainstay. 

Where can we join your Pre-order group and keep up with the latest news about Sew Good Knits?
Our Facebook Group for pre-orders is www.facebook.com/groups/sewgoodknits
Our IG handle is @sewgoodknits ; and our yet to be launched website is www.sewgoodknits.com 

 

Now that you have learnt more about Sew Good Knits, here is a chance to win some of their gorgeous fabrics!

There will be 2 concurrent giveaways to enter. One will be on Facebook and the other on Instagram. Follow the instructions below to enter either or better still, both! 1 yard of Euro knits will be given away for each giveaway. On top of that, there will be a mystery Fat Half (Fat half) that will come along with your prize!

Here’s how to enter. 

FACEBOOK GIVEAWAY

1 yard of the following fabrics from the latest range from Paapii Design + 1 mystery FH will be given away.


facebookgiveaway

CLOVER FOX ORGANIC JERSEY in SUNNY YELLOW

  1. Join the Facebook group for Sew Good Knits.www.facebook.com/groups/sewgoodknits
  2. Like and follow JapaneseSewingBooks on Facebook.
  3. Comment below the giveaway post by telling us your favourite fabric from any of the knits in the Sew Good Knits collection. Hint, you can browse the retail album for existing stock, or any of the fabrics listed in any of their preorder albums. (note that these album links are only visible if you are a member of the group)

INSTAGRAM GIVEAWAY

1 yard of the following fabrics from the latest range from Paapii Design + 1 mystery FH will be given away.

instagramgiveaway
VARPU ORGANIC JERSEY, FOREST GREEN

  1. Follow Sew Good Knits on Instagram (http://instagram.com/sewgoodknits)
  2. Follow Japanese Sewing Books on Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/japanesesewingbooks/)
  3. Comment below the giveaway post on my Instagram page, and tell us what you are going to make with these fabrics.
  4. For extra chances to win – Repost the giveaway banner and hashtag #sewgoodknits
  5. For extra chances to win – Post a photo of your Euro Knits makes (for example fabrics from Käpynen, Ommellinen, Majapuu, PaaPii Design and more). It doesn’t have to be purchased from Sew Good Knits, we just want to see your creations! Important – please include the hashtag #sewgoodknits so that we can discover your photos.

Items 1-3 is compulsory in order to participate, items 4 and 5 will give you extra chances to win!

This giveaway is open worldwide and ends 6th October 2017 10pm Singapore time (UTC +8)
The lucky Winners will be announced on the following Monday (9th October 2017)

Good luck!

Giveaways Japanese Fabrics

Giveaway – nani IRO Cotton Sateen

April 28, 2017

Remember my raves about the new nani IRO cotton sateen last month? Well, we have a treat for you!


naniirogiveawaybanner2

Our very generous friends from ElizabethLittle.co is sponsoring a nani IRO fabric giveaway, and the fabric to be won is none other than the smooth, drape-y cotton sateen I was talking about.

naniirocottonsateengiveaway
Fuccra : rakuen アマルフィ(Amalfi)

Click here for more detailed images of this fabric listed on Elizabeth Little’s online store
image © ATELIER to nani IRO by KOKKA co.ltd & Naomi Ito

It was hard to capture the details on photo but the white birds on the fabric have a pearl glossy sheen to it. It’s really beautiful in real life!

naniirocottonsateenrakuen

For the giveaway, ElizabethLittle.co will be giving away 2m of this gorgeous fabric, perfect for making a dress. By the way, the dress I made with the same cotton sateen in the earlier blog post? Was made only with about 1.2m of the fabric.

GIVEAWAY DETAILS

This giveaway will be different from the previous giveaways where you have to comment only. This time, we want to see what you have made with nani IRO fabrics, or if you are still stashing them for that special occasion, let us have a peek at your stash too! Since we are going to share pictures, this giveaway will be held on Instagram only.

Here’s how to enter. Go to the Giveaway post on Instagram

  1. Like the Giveaway post on Instagram and Follow @japanesesewingbooks on Instagram
  2. Hop on over to ElizabethLittle.co’s Instagram page and follow @elizabethlittleco
  3. Post a photo on your own Instagram account with one OR more of the following :
    – your nani IRO makes (and hashtag #naniiromakes – two chances for each post)
    – your nani IRO stash (and hashtag #naniirogiveaway)
    – or repost the giveaway banner image from my giveaway post (and hashtag #naniirogiveaway)
    IMPORTANT! We will only be able to find your entry if you add the correct hashtags so don’t forget to do so!
  4. Tag at least 3 friends in the comments below the giveaway post (on Instagram), whom you think will love to take part in this giveaway. One tag per comment please! The more friends you tag, the more chances you have to win!

As you can see, posting a photo of your #naniiromakes will give you an extra chance to win, because we really want to see what you make with this lovely fabric!

This giveaway is open worldwide and ends 12th May 10pm Singapore time (UTC +8) That’s two whole weeks to give you more time to upload your photos. The more photos you submit, the greater your chances of winning! The lucky Winner will be announced on the following Monday.

MYnaniiromakes
My #naniIROmakes!

Can’t wait to see all your nani IRO makes and fabric stash. Have fun and good luck!

This Giveaway has ended. Thank you for your participation!

Giveaways

10000 Facebook Likes and 10000 Youtube Subscribers Giveaway

February 3, 2017

10000likes3

Sometime during the mad rush last week, I noticed an exciting thing happening. My Facebook Likes crossed the 10,000 mark! Coincidentally, the number of subscribers on my Youtube Channel crossed the 10,000 mark on the same day! It was almost neck in neck and Facebook won by just a couple of hours. 🙂

Anyway, since it’s such a BIG milestone for me, and even though I only took like 5 years to get here, I decided to do not 1 but 2 Giveaways to celebrate! I was thinking for a while how to combine these two giveaways since they crossed the big 10k at the same time. But I decided it might be best to have them separately, and I’ll start with Facebook first and follow up with the Youtube giveaway next week (while I figure out how best to run a giveaway on Youtube since I’ve never done one before)

So what’s up for grabs? A Japanese Sewing Book of your choice! Really! You get to choose! The only requirements are that it must be still in print and is available for purchase and should be either in Japanese or translated into English. I will then buy it for you and send it to you. I know it’s kind of risky for me to do this giveaway but as I have received lots of enquiries through various channels on buying books you have seen on my blog, I thought this will be a great chance for you to win that book you’ve always wanted. I will try my best so don’t make it too difficult for me 😛 If you have no idea what book to get, just have a quick browse through my book reviews. Here are some quick links to browse the books by category.

Japanese Sewing Books in English (for all the books that have been translated into English only.)
Japanese Sewing Books (in Japanese only)
New Releases (recent releases from the past couple of years should still be readily available.

If you are still spoilt for choice, you can also write down your desired category (Kids/Ladies/Mens/Bags) and I will make a recommendation for you. Sounds fun? Head over to my Facebook page, Like it (if you haven’t already) and comment on this post to win!

Facebook giveaway ends 1 week from now – 10th February 2017 at 9am Singapore time (UTC+8). Good luck!