Sunday, 28 July 2013

My Kanzashi Journey: How it began

I know I haven't written much about the new craft activity I've been doing for the past one year. There's a big gap between the time when I was writing a lot about batik and the time when I started making and selling kanzashi.

When I decided to try selling batiks, I actually hadn't considered about the fact that tailors were extremely rare in Japan. In Indonesia, my home country, we do buy clothes at department stores, boutiques, shopping malls, etc. But also, we do LOVE having our clothes made specially for us. The existence of tailors is just important. The cost to have your dresses made ranges from 7 U.S. dollars / 700 yen (approximately) to over 1 million rupiahs (over 100 dollars). It depends of which tailor and whether you go to a dressmaker (who usually have better knowledge about fashion than a tailor). Therefore, it is quite common for us to purchase a good piece of fabric and go to a tailor or dressmaker to have our clothes made. In my parents' neighborhood, there are at least 5 tailors. That's to give you an idea of how tailors are not rare. In Japan it's the opposite. People prefer to go to department stores to buy clothes rather than having their clothes specially made for them. They don't care about one of a kind thing. They don't care if somebody sitting next to them on the train is wearing the same shirt or same skirt. No wonder, tailors are very very rare and consequently very very expensive. My mother in-law's tailor charges US$ 40 for a man shirt while the tailor who sets up his sewing machine under a tree in front of my parents' house in Indonesia charges US$ 7 for a man shirt. Both are the same quality.

Anyway, as a result of lacking of consideration I failed to sell batiks that I had imported from Indonesia. And consequently, I had piles and piles of batiks that I couldn't sell... Then I talked to my husband what we should do with these batiks.. I came up with the idea of learning to sew by myself, which my husband immediately approved of. Then my sewing adventure began (check out my posts on sewing adventure Stitch Thru' Batiks) and so did my kanzashi adventure.

When I began sewing, I noticed there's a lot of scrap fabric that was not big enough for big project such as an apron but it's too big to be thrown away. I was thinking and thinking what I should do. Then I thought I could make it into some accessories. Fabric flowers were the first ones that popped into my head. So I browsed the net on how to make it. And this is what I found first:

This is what I made based on this video:


You see the tiny flowers? I stuck the flowers on a leather bracelet cord with hot glue gun and voila! A fabric bracelet! I don't have this bracelet anymore with me because I gave it to a good friend as a birthday present and she loved it! This is a photo Natsuno sent to me!


Do you see the bracelet she's wearing? That's the one I made. Also the dragonfly brooches. If you pay attention the blouse she's wearing is the same material I used to make the bracelet and brooches. Yup! I made her the blouse and the accessories/jewelry with the same material. Less waste. Quite eco-friendly, don't you think?.. :)

I also make some more accessories for another good friend. She likes to wear a headband for her beautiful silky hair.



Just as Natsuno, I made the same set for Ayu. Check out her blouse and headband. I used the same material for both!

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