Lately, I have been working a lot with the Japanese techniques of Boro and Sashiko.
Boro is a class of Japanese textiles that have been mended or patched together. The term is derived from Japanese "boroboro", meaning something tattered or repaired. Boro thus came to predominately signify clothing worn by the peasant farming classes, who mended their garments with spare fabric scraps out of economic necessity. In many cases, the usage of such a boro garment would be handed down over generations, eventually resembling a patchwork after decades of mending.
Boro is related to Mottainai philosophy. This term in Japanese conveys a sense of regret over waste; the exclamation "Mottainai!" can translate as "What a waste!" Japanese environmentalists have used the term to encourage people to "reduce, reuse and recycle".
Following this philosophy as inspiration, my latest creations have been embroidering with Sashiko the remains of my own indigo shibori fabrics to embellish denim jackets and bandanas.
Sashiko is a form of embroidery, usually a running stitch, and is literally translated to little stabs. Its sturdy method is ideal for boro and perfect for mending denim. Every stich is exposed, usually with a white tread.
I sewed my own dyed indigo shibori patches in various shades of indigo to achieve a very distintive look.
As you can imagine each piece is a unique work of art, impossible to replicate that takes many hours of labor.
It's a labor of love only executed by makers and artists and cannot be done industrialy.