My quilting thoughts and inspirations sprinkled with a glimpse of life down on the farm

Thursday, September 25, 2014

A day with Yoko Saito

My friend Barb and I had the most wonderful day yesterday in our class with Yoko Saito. Yoko is well known for her "exquisite designs and ingenious use of 'taupe colour' " (words borrowed from the blurb inside one of her books).
Because Yoko knows very little English, she was accompanied by another lovely lady, Satomi, who was able to translate for her.
However Yoko's hands told us much that we needed to know, she was very patient and clear in her demonstrations and there were many "Ahhh!" and "Wow" moments throughout the day!
Yoko and Satomi are in New Zealand for eight days I think and are squeezing in 6 workshop days in that time!
The project we were making was a notebook cover; in reality, what we were making was immaterial, what we learnt was invaluable.
Yoko's work is small (tiny at times!) and the way she works is simple, deft and efficient. What she showed us was that if you use the right tools or technique, doing small is achievable. Not that she has a vast repertoire of tools that she required us to buy, mostly it was using items that are already readily found in our craft rooms... although I think many of us will be purchasing the clever cutter she was using...(it's on her thumb in the photos above and below).
The notebook/diary cover we were making
Here is how far I got with my piece, doesn't seem a lot for a full day but there was lots to see and talk about of course!! (And morning, afternoon tea and lunch were all very well catered for!)
And Barb got about as far along it as I did!
Yoko finished the class by showing us two of the quilts which had travelled with her. Amazing!
And she tirelessly and graciously signed our copies of her books we had brought with us :-)

An added bonus of the class was meeting a fellow blogger. Fairly recently I have been delighted to come across another Raewyn in blogland!! Since I've been blogging I have had many comments and questions about my name... which intrigued me as it was a pretty common 60's name in New Zealand (I often seemed to have another Raewyn in my class while at school!)
I was excited to learn that she was doing the same class as us. Raewyn from Reconstructed Fabulousness is as lovely as her blog suggests. And she does the most beautiful handwork, her blog is well worth looking at and drooling over.
The two Raewyn Anne s in Red.
In case you think I may have neglected my animals for the day, this was how my day started (before the 3 hour drive!)
And I didn't get a photo of how it finished...dinner at the neighbours' place - the roast mutton was just being pulled out of the oven as I arrived after the big drive home. Absolutely fabulous!
A truly fantastic day!!

33 comments:

Leeanne said...

Fabulous!!!! Barb did tell me some of your special day, sounded amazing and you have shown it was amazing! Glad you had a fun day out and then dinner to boot!
Fun that you met Raewyn too!

Maria said...

What a wonderful workshop .. Yokosuka work is just divine and sew intricate ...
Great meeting up with blogging friends and especially as you share the some name. You are the first Raewyn I have heard of.
How nice to have a beautiful ready for you after your drive home and chores...

Maria said...

Silly iPad. It should read. Yoko's work

Julie said...

Gosh Raewyn, sounds an amazing day - her work is truely intricate & beautiful. I can tell you are still fizzing from the workshop, isnt it great that feeling?? So glad you had dinner at the neighbours after your long drive home & how neat to meet a fellow blogger.

margaret said...

how good to be able to attend this class, I so admire Yoko`s work

kiwikid said...

Looks like you had an amazing day! And both Raewyn's look very happy! I associate Raewyn as a NZ name, there were several girls of that name at my school! Such beautiful quilts.

Susan said...

What an amazing opportunity. Looks like you had a great day and learned lots. Yoko's blue quilt is gorgeous.

Sue said...

Beautiful quilts, such talent. How cool meeting a blogging friend.

Barbara said...

Thank you Raewyn for a wonderful day so much learnt and so much inspiration with heaps of fun as well.

Maureen said...

Not sure I'd have the skills or patience for such work - lovely as it is! Glad you enjoyed your day. The diary you've started is beautiful.
Raewyn is such a pretty name. Neat that you two got to meet up.
You have good neighbors!

shez said...

Hi Raewyn wow what a wonderful class you went to and thankyou for sharing your day with us,such awesome work.xx

Melody said...

Lucky you, how wonderful.

Michelle Ridgway said...

What a wonderful workshop. The quilts are stunning so intricate and perfect.

Fiona said...

wonderful..... I have admired her work for some time
Hugz

Leonie said...

Looks like an absolutely wonderful day and class - and meeting nice bloggers is always a bonus! as is a yummy dinner waiting at home :)

Rebecca in AK said...

Yoko Saito's work is absolutely amazing! I can see why you drove three hours to take her class. Your notebook cover is going to be beautiful! I am going to look online for her book. How wonderful to meet the other Raewyn!

Doniene said...

Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful!!! What amazing work and I'm glad that you got to spend time with her and your friends, new and old!!

Blessings and hugs!

Karen said...

What a wonderful day. Her work does look amazing. She must have a lot of patience with all those tiny pieces.

Kerry said...

So glad that you had a great day and came away with lots of fab new techniques.......was thinking of you and Barb after my counting day!!!!or should say days! Hugs xxxxx P.S...
Am sure that cover will be finished in no time.

Peg - Happy In Quilting said...

What an awesome workshop.....lucky you, glad you had a ball

sigisart said...

Dear Raewyn,
looks like you had a really great time with Yoko Saito.. Her Quilts are amazing and inspiring. And Raewyn Nr. 2 looks as friednly as you do :-)))
Nice weekend!!!
Hugs
sigisart

Karen H said...

It sounds like a wonderful workshop with Yoko. For me it isn't always about getting a lot done but rather learning a lot - like all the little tips and tricks that make the job easier! Your notebook cover will be really lovely when finished!

Grethe said...

How nice to read, yes I see you had a great day, lovely blue quilt.
Yoko came to Norway some years back, but I did not take her class.

Laura Barge said...

That;s a fab photo of you Mumsey!!! You're looking trim :)

Quilting Nests said...

What a fabulous day you and Barbara had. Great fabrics to work with.

Farm Gate Creations said...

Yoko envy here...that would of been a great day to attend.

Reconstructed Fabulousness said...

Hey there Raewyn, Nice post and well summarised! We do look happy...don't we? :-)

She was indeed a lovely and inspiring tutor and her beyond teeny perfect work so cool to see for real with her beautiful quilts/baskets/notebooks etc that she brought with her.

The rest of the workshops were just as enjoyable and I even got a bit done...just a bit!

Good to hear you and Barb made it back ok and what a fab dinner waiting for lucky U.

The other Raewyn

Charlie and Wendy said...

That looks an amazing opportunity, the project and quilts are gorgeous. So nice to meet another kiwi blogger, I will pop over to her blog now :)

Elyte said...

What a wonderful opportunity for you to meet this very talented woman and learn some of her secrets. Your project is looking lovely, please don't abandon it.

marina said...

looks like you were definitely in your element there!
what amazing quilts!

Elaine said...

Sounds like you had a wonderful day, how exciting to learn from Yoko!

Sharon @ OSEWDIVINE said...

Ooh you lucky thing I was dreaming about that class but too far and expensive for me after my big trip. Looks like you had fun Yokos quilts are amazing and it's nice to meet fellow bloggers in person

Carrie P. said...

OH,you lucky girl. I would love to take a class with her.