Posted on

Needle Works Cruise 2018 Highlights

Lola Girl Sashiko table runner

I had an absolutely amazing time tutoring on the 2018 Needle Works cruise.

The whole experience perfectly combined holiday relaxation and creative abundance. It was wonderful to be able to look up from our work to see the stunning blue ocean or gorgeous beaches.

We set sail from Sydney on the 21st of April for cruise that took in Fiji, Hawaii and Seattle. I was joined by a number of other very talented tutors from a variety of stitching disciplines.

Diamond Head, Hawaii
Diamond Head, Hawaii. Simply stunning!

I held daily classes with an enthusiastic group of ladies on deck to study the art of sashiko and boro. For our first class, we worked on one of my favourite designs, the Chelsea Sashiko Table Runner.

Lola Girl Sashiko table runner
First project of the cruise: Chelsea sashiko runner.


Indigo Niche sashiko workshop
My students working on their first project: The Chelsea Sashiko Table Runner.

The Chelsea table runner consists of the traditional Japanese Seven Treasures sashiko motif and Japanese print fabric, and is constructed by a combination of the sashiko stitching discipline and applique.

Indigo Niche sashiko class
Sashiko and lovely ocean views. Perfect!


Indigo Niche Sahiko class
One of my students preparing some circles of fabric for applique.


My main objective was to show how individuals could apply their own creativity to the sashiko and boro disciplines. I’ve always felt that sashiko need not be restricted to traditional Japanese motifs—although I adore those—and that one’s own personal journey and influences can be explored through sashiko stitching.

My students chose to interpret my designs in a variety of creative ways, with lovely results.

Another project that we worked on was a Temari sashiko runner. The Temari design incorporates a number of circular traditional Japanese sashiko motifs, charmingly arranged in a way that evokes the traditional children’s toy the temari ball.


Indigo Niche sashiko workshop
Some of my students working on the Temari sashiko runner project. (Looking very focused!)


boro flair on denim jacket
Jenny added this gorgeous boro flair to her denim jacket in her spare time.

In my downtime I was able to catch up on some of my boro projects, as well as brainstorm some new ideas for sashiko and boro products that I plan to bring to the store.

Indigo Niche boro project
Working on a boro project in my downtime.


Indigo Niche boro project
The finished product: some boro in my spare time.

I also had the opportunity have a look at the other groups’ wonderful creations, which I found very inspirational. I was particularly taken by Prudence Mapstone’s work.

The cruise was a wonderful experience, such a refreshing way of exercising one’s creativity.

Until next time,


If you would like to enquire about my teaching schedule, or have any questions about the sashiko runners featured in this blog, feel free to contact me via the form below.

7 thoughts on “Needle Works Cruise 2018 Highlights

  1. Would you please send details of the 2019 cruise if you can please.

    1. Hello Michele, If you would like to do a sewing cruise my suggestion would be to go onto the Needleworks Website and have a look at the cruises that are on offer – They have different cruises to different locations each year – I think there is one going to New Zealand Next year, but there might be others as well. Hope all this helps.


      Sue Howie

  2. I loved the Lola Girl table runner I finished. I have a few other projects in mind with the Sashiko method of sewing. Thank you for all the ideas I can’t wait to start some new projects. Thank you again Sue. Love Lesley Tweddle. 🛳🛳

    1. Lesley, you did such a lovely job on your piece – I was impressed with your innovative colouring – Would be so happy to receive a photo of your completed piece when you get home and are to complete – Hope you enjoyed the rest of your trip.

      Sue H.

  3. I confirmed the email and unsubscribed me. Can you add me to mailing list please.

  4. It was lovely to meet you Sue. I also had a lovely time on the cruise. Not having done Sashiko before I was not too sure what to expect. But now I am addicted. Thank you again.
    Love Leonie

    1. Hi Leonie, so glad I have got you addicted – you won’t be disappointed – its such a lovely craft – Would be very interested to see the outcome of your project once completed – Sue

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.