Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Sashiko Placemats

Here's another free pattern from my latest book of embroidery, 

Pond and Scales Sashiko placemats

Sashiko is an ancient form of embroidery from Japan. Traditionally, it consists of beautiful designs, sometimes simple, sometimes complex, often geometric, stitched entirely in white running stitches on indigo fabric. It can be very soothing and contemplative to stitch Sashiko designs. These pretty placemats are the perfect canvas for practicing Sashiko.

What You Need:
  1. Yard of dark blue quilter’s cotton fabric (for 2 – 16 x 12 inch placemats)
Carbon transfer paper for fabric
Dark blue thread
Embroidery floss
one skein each of white (blanc), light pink 761, pink 760

Running Stitch

  1. For each placemat, cut two pieces of  17 x 13 inch rectangles from the fabric.
  2. Print the Sashiko pattern and transfer it to one piece of fabric using a light color of transfer paper.
  3. Embroider the design. Sashiko designs are stitched with the Running Stitch and usually without the use of a hoop. Use an extra long needle, so you can create several stitches at once on the loose fabric. This technique works best on designs with straight lines, but you can stitch them one at a time if you prefer and achieve the same results.
  4. Pin the two pieces of fabric together right sides facing and sew 1 inch in from the edge, leaving a 2 inch space open. Turn the placemat right side out and press the seams flat.
  5. Top stitch the placemat 1/8 inch in from the edge.
Here are the patterns (click to enlarge)

If you're interested in learning more about Sashiko and lots of other embroidery techniques, check out my book, Doodle Stitching: Embroidery and Beyond!
You're sure to learn something new and find tons of inspiration for your Holiday stitching projects.


  1. Wow, this is fab! Thanks for the tutorial! Looking forward to your book too. Jen

  2. They look fantastic! Thanks for sharing.


Thanks for your comments! I love hearing from you! :)