Amy Katoh opened the Blue & White Store over 35 years ago promoting Japanese crafts and lifestyle of years past. Besides the Blue & White Store, she has written many books that long-time expats cherish for ideas when they visit Japanese craft stores and flea markets. Indigo and sashiko, yukata and tenugui are carefully chosen to highlight the beauty of the blue and white tradition of Japan. I have shopped at Amy’s store for years and am the happy owner of Sashiko tablemats and a fun fish wall hanging that is perfect in the beach house. If you love blue and white, Japanese craft and people who are passionate about Japanese traditions you must visit Blue & White in Azabu.
Sashiko (刺し子, literally means “little stabs”) is a form of decorative reinforcement stitching from Japan. Traditionally used to reinforce points of wear, or to repair worn places or tears with patches, this running stitch technique is often used for purely decorative purposes in quilting and embroidery. The white cotton thread on the traditional indigo blue cloth gives sashiko its distinctive appearance though decorative items sometimes use red thread.
A Tenugui (手拭い) is a thin Japanese hand towel made of cotton. It is typically about 35 by 90 centimeters in size, plain woven and is almost always dyed with some pattern. It can be used for anything a towel could be used for – as a washcloth, dishcloth, but often as a headband, souvenir or decoration.
Here are some of Amy Katoh’s wonderful books available on Amazon.co.jp!
Just my opinion
- Merchandise: wide range of clothing, slippers, and quilts made from Japanese blue and white fabric, also ceramics
- Price: very wide spectrum
- Service: Very knowledgeable and friendly
- Gift-wrap: Available
- Child friendliness: Staff is very child friendly, although the store is narrow and has stairs so it is not stroller friendly
Blue & White Store Details
Address: 2-9-2 Azabu Juban, Minato-ku, Tokyo
Hours: Open Daily 11:00 – 18:00
Blue & White Store, Azabu Juban
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