"Toast to My Ancestors!" by Akane Sakamoto at the Tokyo Dome Show

One more good reason to visit the Tokyo Dome Show is that you can see and admire various styles of quilts.

Personally I liked an exhibit by Akane Sakamoto, which was called "Toast to My Ancestors!"
It was unique and was a feast for the eyes!

It resembles something, doesn't it?
Yes, it is one of the self portraits of Van Gogh!
Japanese images surround Van Gogh in this particular work of art.

A flock of chickens!

They are talkative pouches.
I like the idea of using a zipper as a mouth.
They wouldn't zip their lips, as they seem to have nothing they are sorry about!

This is her buddy, Mofuo, who is life size.

Masako, Mofuo and the artist, Akane Sakamoto

Emi, Mofuo and the artist, Akane Sakamoto




Many of you might wonder what is Moomin?
It is a Finnish picture book with animations which has been quite popular among Japanese women.

I still remember that it was broadcast when I was little and was definitely one of my favorites.

I am not sure why it attracts so many Japanese women. But it is adorable.

Moomin and his family live in the Moomin valley.
They are white and chubby fairy tale characters which somehow resemble hippopotamuses.

The famous Japanese quilter, Yoko Saito, creates its world by quilting.
According to her, she was not allowed to use any other colors than the authentic ones used in the original books.

This was on the flyer of the event, beautifully hand appliqued and with fine hand quilting. 

Who wouldn't adore the family?
Papa with his black hat on and Mama carrying her pocketbook.

Look at them.
They are pieced! I would love to have them!

Their house was especially made for this show.

If you walk to the other side, you can see the inside where miniature furniture and even quilts are displayed. 

This is a huge tapestry.

There were a number of Moomin quilts exhibited which were made by Yoko's students, I assume.

This is what I liked the most.
I simply liked the combinations of colors and the symmetry of the design.



The 13th Tokyo International Great Quilt Festival ~ part III CRIB QUILT booth ~

Can you believe over 40,000 visitors came to the show each day on the weekend?

The number of visitors is increasing each year.
We had a lot of customers at our booth from many different countries!

At one of lessons at CRIB QUILT shop, before the show began, a student of Masako's brought us wonderful news that her daughter won the first prize in the Junior Category!
(official website

The pretty girl, Mayuna, age 7, and her family.

She is not the only one who quilts; her brother does as well!

On the fifth day we had unusual customers who were cute boys from a high school in Tochigi prefecture.

They came on a school trip to learn handicrafts.
I think it was a good opportunity to show them what a quilt is and, as a result, they may develop an interest in quilting.


13th Tokyo International Great Quilt Festival ~ part II Masako's talk on antique fabrics ~

On the final day of the show, Masako gave a lecture on antique fabrics.

One of her American friends, Betsey, is the owner of Rocky Mountain Quilts. (her website)
She sells beautiful antique quilts and is very knowledgeable on antique fabrics.
She also restores antique quilts using authentic fabrics of the time.
Masako has learned a lot from her about fabrics which were made in the 19th century and used in her newest quilt. She shared the historical background of those fabrics with her audience.

The two quilts hanging below are from Betsey.
Masako especially likes the one on the right hand side which is a Centennial International Exhibition of 1876 quilt.
The maker of this quilt could never have imagined her quilt would be owned by a Japanese quilter living in Tokyo in the 21st century!

It's a rarely seen antique wool quilt.

It was a twenty minute long lecture in which she also spoke about how she met her first quilter and what wonderful things this circle of quilting friends has brought her. 


13th Tokyo International Great Quilt Festival 2014 ~Part I Masako's latest quilt~

The Tokyo International Great Quilt Festival 2014 was held from January 23rd to 29th at the Tokyo Dome, which is usually a baseball stadium.

Masako has been invited to exhibit a quilt since its beginning, which means her 13th quilt was displayed this year.

The title is "Transcending Time"

If you take a closer look at the fabrics, you will realize they somehow have a Victorian look.
Most of the fabrics used in the quilt are actual antique ones which were made circa 1830-70.
Transcending time and place, pieces of fabrics are now combined to form this design as a quilt which will last another century. This is why it has an antique appearance even though it is newly made.

The center rose medallion design is done using a one-strand punchneedle as is the rose border.

The punchneedle embroidery is surrounded by the tiny patches of antique fabrics which are a perfect compliment.

Masako received much well deserved praise at the show.