Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Going to Asia and Stashoholism Confessional

I am jetting off to Asia on Thursday! I am so excited. I will presenting a two-day course on the island of Langkawi in Malaysia. On the way I'll stop in Hong Kong for a bit of shopping with AllisonC!!!! I am so excited to meet her, as I love everything she makes. Then on to Langkawi.

On the way home I'll spend two days in Tokyo. Suggestions are welcome. I've wanted to go to Tokyo since I was a kid and I get so excited when I read my guidebook.


FFC 7-09

Ostensibly for the trip, I ordered some white stretch cotton twill from FFC, with the idea of making Simplicity 2728 for my trip. Unfortunately, it took a while to arrive and I didn't have time to make the jacket. I had ordered some of this twill last year and was *thrilled* with the quality. Alas, they have changed suppliers. It's still good quality but the last batch was almost completely opaque. This is much more translucent and a jacket (or anything) made out of it would have to be lined. I had envisioned a short sleeve unlined summer jacket and this fabric won't work for that.

The seersucker was because I needed to fill up my cart to get full value on shipping, LOL. I bought enough so that I was within pennies of the step up to the next shipping charge.


Carolyn (cmarie12) said...

Have a good trip and have a wonderful time meeting AllisonC!!! Oh and buy some amazing fabrics while you are with Allison!

BeeBee said...

Cottons and silks. Silks and cottons. I'm quite jealous.
You can also find hand strung pearls - black (really more of a purple) very inexpensively. I have a set (from Guam) that makes my neck hurt it's so heavy - for about $10. The islands are your best bets for those.
Have fun!

McVal said...

Wow - what a great opportunity! Have a great time!

Su said...

have a great time.
And maybe pick up some batik at langkawi.

Lindsay T said...

Bon voyage, you lucky girl. Post lots of photos when you get back.

AuntieAllyn said...

Hong Kong . . . that's a LOOONNNNGGG flight! I regret that I didn't do MORE shopping when I was there! Travel safe!

RiAnge Creations. Ltd. said...

Bon Voyage. Have a safe & wonderful trip. I can't wait to see what you bring back from Hong Kong.

Cennetta said...

Wow! Lucky you. Have a grand time in Asia.

Dawn said...

Hey, just making sure you saw this:


Kyoko said...

Hi Trena,

I am originally from Tokyo, now living in Milano, in bella Italia,

Here are 3 shops in Tokyo that you are sure to love! I am sorry that some of the sites are not in English, but your hotel will help you with directions on how to get there.

Have a wonderful time! They are all located in central Tokyo:

TOMATO (Nippori station) : fabrics starting at 100 yen/meter

MARUNAN (Shibuya station) : tiny store great prices

TOKYU HANDS (Shibuya station) : everything for people who like to make things

Japan shop guide in English

Incredible CLOVER double roulette for tracing seams

Trudy Callan said...

I am so happy for you. I hope you have a wonderful time and find some very beautiful fabrics while you are there.

Anna said...

Have a wonderful trip! I am planning for my first trip to Japan in October (can't wait!) and have found this Tokyo shopping really fabulous: http://www.askingfortrouble.org/crafts/tokyo-shopping-guide/

She explains how to get to each place - including Tomato in Fabric Town - and you can buy the shopping guide as a PDF to print and take with you if you want it on hand (all the entries are on her blog to read though as well). And she has links on the page above to lots of other bloggers who have written shopping/travel guides as well.

And some inspiring pics and ideas here as well http://japancraftjournal.blogspot.com/


Carol said...

If you're entering Malaysia via KL I can recommend some wonderful fabric stores there, too. Langkawi is lovely and you'll have a wonderful time.

Nancy K said...

that sounds like a fabulous trip! Enjoy and buy some great fabrics.

Kathi said...

Have a wonderful trip!
Your internet shopping sounds like mine -- adding things to the cart to save on shipping!!!!

Natasha said...


I have been silently enjoying your blog, but your post about your trip to Tokyo forced me to comment. I was in Tokyo last year for a few days with my boyfriend. He worked all day while I wandered around the city solo and fabric shopped. It was awesome, and Tokyo is wonderful. Kyoko's list above is right on -- those are the exact 2 fabric stores where I spent most of my shopping time and money. Tokyo Hands was very cool, but there was another super fun store called Loft where I did all my stationery and gift shopping (a quick google search turned up this description among others: http://www.askingfortrouble.org/crafts/2008/01/15/tokyo-shopping-guide-loft/). Marunan is really conveniently located and you'll probably be just steps from it in your normal sightseeing if you go to Shibuya. Tomato is so exciting I get butterflies just thinking about it. It's located on a street full of other fabric shops. Bring cash to Tomato, they don't take plastic. In fact, bring lots of cash.

Also...I think you're vegetarian, right? I am too, and I had a Japanese speaking friend write a little note for me that said something like -- "I'm a vegetarian, I don't eat fish, fish broth, chicken, chicken broth, beef or pork" I don't speak any Japanese other than "thank you" and many people in Japan don't speak much English, so I flashed that card with a questioning look at all the restaurants I went into to try to make sure they could make food I would eat. It worked out really well, everyone was extremely polite and willing to prepare something special for me if necessary.

You'll have a great trip!

Kyoko said...


Kyoko here again. When you are at Shibuya station (Marunan, Tokyu Hands, Loft) Kinokuniya book store is in the area. It is in the Tokyu Plaza building 5th floor. Hours 10~20. There are great books on sewing and other hand-work. You can also find books at Tokyu Hands, but a way lesser selection. Kinokuniya is well worth the 3 minutes it will take to walk over from Marunan.


kitty said...

Ooo Tokyo! I was there last year, and I recommend you get to Nippori textile town! It's in Nippori, not too far from Nippori train station.
You'll love it!

If you get time, try to get to 'Yuzawaya' in Kichijoji, near Kichijoji train station, it's a multi-level craft and sewing store. Great sewing machine accessories, fabrics, trims etc.

Oh and if you are in Shinjuku there is also Odaya (I think that's what it was called) fabric and craft store, which is 2 buildings full of the good stuff.

And Tokyu Hands was my favourite department store. I still dream of Tokyu Hands.

Have a fabulous trip!


Uta said...

Have a safe trip. And bring back some fabric!

Christina said...

How cool that you get to meet Allison. Have a great trip!

Anonymous said...

Have a wonderful, safe trip. Enjoy every second of it! Can't wait to hear the news when you return.

Anonymous said...

You are coming close to where I am(Singapore). Never been to any of the places you are going to though which is surprising even to me. You are going to have a spectacular working-holiday I am sure. Have plenty of fun!

McVal said...

Hey - I've just left you an award on my blog. Check it out when you hit a cyber-cafe!

ginevra / red_swirl said...

In Tokyo: Nippori textile town (generally, not just Tomato), Okadaya (opposite East exit Shinjuku). Yuzawaya at Kichijoji might be a bit far away (but good), and if you go to Shibuya, don't forget to check out all the department stores!

Fabric wise, woven cottons and linens are excellent (check if double sided), but knits are a little disappointing. Personally, I'm not so into polyesters, although there were some really high quality ones in Nippori.

Stuff like buckles, ribbons & lace are very stylish (eg. Okadaya)... compared to Sydney, anyway. And there's leather-work tools & kits in most craft stores, if you're into that. Have a look if you like any little gadgets, also in the quilting / bag & hat making sections.

meli88a said...

Lucky you! You'll get some beautiful cottons and silks, I am sure... with the most beautiful prints too. I look forward to seeing them when you get back!