Meet Mariko Nakamura, dressmaker and author of Sew Japanese

Mariko Nakamura began designing at a young age, drawing pictures of dresses that her mother would sew for her. This was the first time she experienced the special feeling of wearing handmade clothes. Now, as a mother of two, she mainly enjoys designing children’s clothes. We met up with Mariko to talk about her work as a dressmaker.

Hi Mariko, what makes you passionate about your craft?
I have always thought that there is something special about objects that are handmade. There is a special satisfaction to make them, and when it comes to clothing – to wear something that you know has been made with particular attention and care for detail is a nice feeling!

What sparks your creativity?
When I watch some beautiful old films with costumes, I always get excited to see them. Or when I see some beautiful and respectable sewing techniques of garments from antique markets, it really inspires me.

When did you start making things?
When I was 9 or 10 years old, I started making little dolls from felt. That was my starting point to making. Then, I started making more clothes or bags with my mother when I was a bit older.

Which is your most cherished childhood memory?
When I was a child, I used to go to some shops selling sewing stuff with my mother, got some ideas what I could make with them, then making things with her. Sometimes, I made a drawing of what I wanted to make, and she helped me to do it. It is a really cherished and warm memory from my childhood.

Could you describe a typical crafty day in your life?
I love going to the Portobello market on Friday, looking around for antique stuff or vintage buttons or ribbons. Then, I enjoy thinking about designs, and starting making patterns, sewing clothes and having many breaks with coffee and sweets. That is my typical crafty day.

9781909397408Mariko Nakamura’s Sew Japanese (Pavilion, £16.99) is available now

 

Other Articles

Squash & mussel soup – a warming autumn recipe from PROVENÇAL by Alex Jackson

Cook the simple and flavoursome food of the South of France with acclaimed chef Alex Jackson’s Provencal. This unique collection of recipes encapsulates the beauty and simplicity of Provencal French cooking and shows you how to recreate the flavours of the South of France at home. This might seem an… Read More

GIFTS FOR THE PERSON WHO… loves a surprise

Are you looking for a meaningful secret Santa gift or stocking filler that will delight the recipient and definitely not end up forgotten in a drawer? Build your reputation as the most creative gift-giver with these inspirational, creative, and fun books! Out of the Woods by Betsy Griffin Out… Read More

GIFTS FOR THE PERSON WHO… lives life with style

If you’re looking for the perfect Christmas gift for a loved one who has a keen artistic eye, a love of beautiful design or a brilliantly crafty hobby, we have hand-selected some books that are sure to inspire. Made With Love by Tom Daley Tom Daley’s debut… Read More