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Sewing Retreats Blog
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April 7 - 20, 2024

Workshops/Trunk Shows

Sew & Sew Retreats are purposeful getaways that are aimed at

rescuing you from your everyday routine and whisking you off to an

exceptional location to bask in the happiness you find in creating with textiles.

All levels of experience will enjoy the workshops, from beginners to advanced!

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Heidi Parkes

"I’m excited to guide students in making a diary quilt that celebrates hand-stitching!"

The gifted quilt artist and teacher Heidi Parkes will join us for the duration of the retreat. She will conduct an on-going workshop while in Japan.

Travel Diary Quilt

Per Heidi, "Responding to the unique requirements of space and travel in Japan, we will create our quilts by starting with a 'base' of three pieces of indigo fabric. We'll stay nimble by embroidering on and adding to these relatively small substrates while sewing in and outside of our classroom!

  • Learn about a magpie aesthetic that allows us to quickly see, filter, and depict the experiences that resonate with us while remaining lighthearted about our work.

  • Discover ways of ethically sourcing inspiration from our cultural surroundings with appreciation and respect.

  • Connect with intuitive ways of making that free us from decision fatigue, allowing us to work in collaboration and connection with the rhythms of travel. (i.e., think less, sew more and trust the process!)

  • Acquire embroidery and hand piecing techniques that are quick and beautiful. 

  • Discover methods for creating a quilt top in segments and devise a plan to connect them with technical and aesthetic skill.

  • Students will create a quilt top while in Japan! The guest artists and I will offer advice and model our approaches to storytelling and sewing.


Before we head to Japan, we’ll connect on Zoom to meet our fellow travelers. Students will receive access to a private class web page with videos of my favorite stitches, so that they can practice technique while anticipating the trip. Students will also access my on-demand Improv Hand Quilting class for support in turning their quilt tops into quilts after returning home.


While in Japan, I will offer instruction, guide students in one-on-one mentoring for their quilts, and spark some engaging group conversations about making, so we can expand on the poetry of our process and deepen our understanding of Japanese fabrics and aesthetics."

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Akiko Ike

While in Niigate, textile artist Akiko Ike will welcome the group to her studio for a chiku-chiku pincushion workshop.

"We will transform old cloth into small pincushion works-of-art with chiku-chiku stitches,"

Chiku-Chiku Pincushion Workshop

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Hikaru Noguchi

“I’m looking forward to sharing my visible mending work with a Trunk Show.”

We are very excited to have Hikaru Noguchi join us for a Trunk Show of her visible mending! By Hikaru showcasing a variety of materials, techniques, and subject matter, there will be so much to explore! This is a rare opportunity to engage closely with her visible mending art.

Hikaru Noguchi's Trunk Show of Visible Mending

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Hikaru Noguchi was born in Tokyo, Japan. After studying graphic design at an art college in Tokyo, she moved to London to study textile and knit design. She started her own knitting studio in London in1993 creating a knitted accessories collection. That led to her collaboration with a number of British designers including Tom Dixon, Top Shop and projects for Barneys, Browns and Paul Smith women. Her work has been sold in Takashimaya New York, Saks Fifth Ave, Barney’s and boutiques and department stores in London, Paris, New York, Tokyo and elsewhere. Hikaru is the author of two mending books, Darning, Repair, Make, Mend and Creative Mending. She currently lives in Tokyo and incorporates the great history of Japanese textiles, such as Sashiko and other Japanese needle craftwork into her own pieces.

"Hikaru's work will remind attendees of the aesthetics of mending, and will help them be more fearless with their travel quilts!

I want them to be brave and to not worry of stains and joining things together. I know that seeing her work will inspire them to see any inevitable 'mishaps' as opportunities for storytelling and collaboration." - Heidi Parkes

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Amy Katoh

"I'm delighted to share my story of Blue & White for  CelebrateJapanese Textiles!"

Amy Katoh is the owner of the quirky Blue & White shop in Tokyo. We can't wait for her trunk show! We will learn about Amy's commitment to sharing the best of traditional and contemporary Japanese arts and crafts with the world.

The Blue & White Story - a Trunk Show


Blue & White is a unique shop in Tokyo showcasing the best of blue and white handmade Japanese crafts for 35 years. Indigo and Sashiko, yukata and tenugui are carefully chosen to highlight the beauty of the blue and white tradition of Japan.

Amy Katoh is the shop owner and also an author and keeper of Japanese indigo, folk art and handcrafted items. When Amy moved to Japan in the 1960s, the local attitude was to abandon traditional Japanese things in favor of western and modern things. But areas of the old ways remained for those who sought them out and at the forefront was Amy and her shop Blue & White.

Amy went to markets and bought old indigo work clothes, tools considered defunct and pottery no longer wanted. She started out by saving things and went on to re-invent and help create new things from the old. She has been instrumental in bringing outside interest to the folk arts of Japan and thereby helping the Japanese see the charm of their traditional arts and culture.

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Sew & Sew Retreats brings together people with a similar interest and then offers the opportunity to spend memorable moments creating, learning, exploring, relaxing and laughing with like-minded people. I hope you will join us!


Sold Out

If you would like to be added to the waiting list,


and request to be put on the list for Japan,

also include your email address. 

Sew and Sew Retreats, LLC

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