With all of my ruminating, I whittled down my options to two: another pair of trousers (black corduroy), or another pleated skirt (black silk). I wasn’t mentally ready to start either of them, so what did I make? A big square!
Sounds useless and boring, but stay with me.
This is a furoshiki, a Japanese wrapping cloth. Ever since I discovered furoshiki, I thought they were cool. Of course, I’m not in Japan right now and getting my hands on authentic furoshiki is a bit of a challenge.
The larger ones I’ve picked up are generally selvage on two sides and 2mm rolled hems on the other two. The smaller ones are hemmed all the way around. The fabric used tends to be a nice cotton, fairly substantial, with various traditional prints.
I can’t get the particular variety of nice cotton or the traditional prints here, so I’ve taken to making furoshiki out of interesting quilting cotton. I hem the edges with my 2mm rolled hem foot. I’ve had varying degrees of grief with this foot, but no problems at all on this project. Yay!
One use for furoshiki is storing out of season clothes. I had been keeping clothes in a plastic bin, but it gets pretty stale. If I wrap the clothes in a furoshiki, it’s much more stable than a simple pile of clothes. I can stack them up and get more use out of the otherwise not very useful closet shelf.
They’re also nice for storing bedding. I made some last year in a few different sizes to use as a non-disposable alternative to wrapping paper. I’ll have to make a few more this year as not all of the ones I made last year came back to me. I don’t mind as long as they actually get used…
The Japanese Ministry of the Environment has been promoting the use of furoshiki as a traditional alternative to plastic bags. The Ministry is the source of this handy how-to guide, which is especially useful for gift-style wraps.