Every now and then I get asked to do a commission - it's one of the things I love about handmade products, that you can create something totally personal and unique and (hopefully!) give someone exactly what they want. But when the lovely Emilia approached me a few months ago with a request to turn a vintage Japanese Obi into a set of cushions I have to admit I was terrified! The obi was a wonderful gift from a friend of hers, and Emilia wanted to turn it into something she could use and enjoy every day, but cutting into such an exquisite swathe of fabric was daunting to say the least! The other difficulty was the crease that ran down the middle of the fabric which, after all those years, was never going to come out - so we came up with the idea of sewing a length of ribbon down the central crease, so there was enough width of fabric, and the cushions had an extra layer of detail. Well, after a deep breath I made the first cut and, on seeing the lovely photos of the cushions in Emilia's new home (thanks Emilia!), I'm glad I did!
I made Emilia three cushions and a little clutch purse, and she very kindly let me keep the remnants of the fabric, which became the necklace shown here!
Most of the cushions in my own flat are made from vintage fabric or old clothes (including a hideous shoulder-padded 80s yellow jacket I got for £1 in a charity shop) and it's a great way to give fabrics (exquisite or less so!) a new life!