Skip to content

The new fashion for Japanese Boro stitching and repair

  • by JW

“The tradition of recycling and reworking textiles”


The Repair Café hopes to be returning sometime soon.

Meanwhile for inspiration, here’s a great photo on the right from their pages:

Sidmouth Repair Cafe | Facebook

See also:

Sashiko – Wikipedia

Boro (textile) – Wikipedia


A correspondent notes:

There is apparently a new fashion for Japanese Boro stitching and repair (which back in the 70s we called applique, and has been known since time immemorial as patching!!! ) 


There are some great places online for more such inspiration – and “the tradition of recycling and reworking pre-existing textiles”:

V&A · Make Your Own: Japanese ‘Boro’ Bag


The Art of Mending: Boro Stitching and Visible Mending

There is a resurgence in popularity in the art of mending. Before the age of disposable fashion, our grandmothers bought good clothes and, as they became worn, they mended them. They darned socks and learned how to match fabrics and patterns so mending could only be seen with close inspection. The beauty of mending is in preserving old favorites with slow, meditative stitches that then extend the life of garments or home accessories.

Mending is not new. Japanese Boro Stitching is a traditional art form that embraces upcycling and repurposing. Its simple stitches bring function and beauty to the garment. Each textile tells a story — whether it is the scraps of fabrics that are used for the patches, or the stitches chosen for the repair. So mending brings fashion and interest to the item.

There is a current trend for visible mending that is inspired by traditional Japanese boro stitching, making garment repairs visually appealing and prominent by adding beautiful fabrics and stitches. So each repair becomes an opportunity for the stitcher to slow down and mindfully sew the patches to express their creativity, creating an original design…

The Art of Mending: Boro Stitching and Visible Mending | Create Whimsy


And here’s a great website devoted to ‘fast fashion’ – in the sense of a quick bit of good-looking repair and some neat refashioning done in a jiffy – plus a video:

‘Boro’ Patching Tutorial – Fast Fashion Therapy


Here’s another video:



Boro & Sashiko: The Art of Japanese Mending & Stitching – YouTube