Where did you get that fabric?

by Jacqui Miyabayashi Mee a Bee, Japan

Some would say I’m lucky living in Japan. When it comes to having access to some of the most beautiful fabrics in the world I would definitely agree. Oh and I love sushi!

My business philosophy is to use materials that are Made in Japan. From fabrics to threads, buckles and buttons, I am incredibly lucky to be able to do that. Really in this day and age very little is not made in China or some other developing country. However a lot of manufacturing is still done in Japan, including fabric. The fabric industry benefits from thousands of years of wisdom dating back to the eighth century when kimono became popular in Japan.

These days kimono are only worn on very special occasions and even then only by a few so the textile industry has had to diversify to make everyday fabrics like those that I use to make my bags. I may be putting myself out of business here but a lot of you want to know where can you buy Japanese fabrics?

If you’re in the US I’m sure you know about the gorgeous Purl Soho.com. Located in New York this shop would be top on my list of places to visit if I ever made it over. The Purl Bee is the blog/inspiration notebook which is one of my regular places to visit.

If you’re a dedicated follower of cuteness from Japan then you must know about Super Buzzy (see some of their adorable fabrics above). The owners of this online shop actually visit Japan and go to the showrooms to hand-pick their fabrics. I regularly visit the site to find out what’s new and popular. If you’re in Ventura, CA why not call and arrange to visit the warehouse!

Here are three fabric stores you may not have heard of that are based in Australia. All three offer international shipping and are great people to deal with.

First up: Retro Mummy – mum of almost four kids, Corrie, loves all kinds of crafting and is especially passionate about Japanese fabrics. Her kids are gorgeous and I enjoy her blogs about home cooking and sewing for her family.

Funky Fabrix is both a store-front and an online store based in Brisbane, Australia. The family-run business pride themselves on their excellent customer service. Why not connect with Shona via Twitter and “see” the smile behind the webpage.

Kelani: Here’s another mum-run business based in Australia that stocks a lot of Japanese fabrics. Elissa uses her blog to tell the stories behind some of the cute prints she sells. Her inspiration gallery is truly inspiring.

Happy crafting!

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