Every workshop I had offered in the last 3 years, I tried to express my appreciation to them for coming to my workshop (or taking the Online Sashiko Class). It means a lot to me that they care very much to learn from me with spending both of their money and time.
At the end of the workshop, I usually say, “You can go outside of the box of my Sashiko. Please surprise me with your Sashiko”. I am in a very boxed idea of “traditional” Sashiko. I am very conservative in that way. Therefore, I always enjoy the alternation of Sashiko from those who learned from me (including those who learned from my Youtube Videos.)
Recently, I came up with the more suitable phrase that I like more.
“I am the Past. You are the future.”
Please do not misunderstand that “I am the Past” as I am done or gone. I am proud of what I do, and I will keep sharing the beauty of Sashiko we practice. It is my pleasure to be the past.
At the same time, I cannot stop the movement of upcycling and sustainable fashion with using Sashiko as a marketing term of its flag. Although Sashiko does not equal the concept of up-cycling (Sashiko has a perspective of Upcycling, not equal), I probably should not even try to change the trend. My mission is to encourage the future (you) as the past (me).
“The Future” can shine when the past is respected. When one ignores the past, the future is not so clear or bright, in my opinion. It is important to appreciate where we are from after all.
Denying our roots may not bring happiness (Trust me. I know from my experience).
Not everyone keeps enjoying Sashiko after my workshops. They do not need to continue. I hope they will come back to Sashiko someday, then move to some other hobby again, and then come back to Sashiko again and again. “Touch in base” is a healthy relationship with them and Sashiko.
Not everyone learned from me. Not everyone enjoys Sashiko stitching in my way. It is perfectly fine. The fact that you are reading this article is a sign of your generous appreciation to the Japanese culture.
For me, you are being a part of the future of Sashiko. In fact, you are the future of Sashiko.
Past and Future, instead of Past or Future.
Modern or Tradition? I believe, Modern and tradition can coexist together. I also hope that we all can appreciate the tradition, and then make the movement like Tradition and then Modern. We can freely define what “modern” is. However, I learned that modern and tradition do not have to argue with each other.
When we focus on dualism blaming each other, the world becomes a bit of an unnatural place to live. I guess this “unnaturalness” is the feeling I felt when Greta Thunberg made a series of speeches. I agree with her messages almost 100%. We gotta do something about the environment. However, it is a concern of all of us - not a concern based on the dualism of “Children vs Adults”.
Sashiko falls into the same category.
As long as one can care about the stories, philosophies, and mindset (which so-called culture) behind the Sashiko, there is no need to define what Sashiko is.
You are the future, and I am so thankful that you learn from me.
I am the past, and it is my sincere pleasure to be the past.
Thank you(the future), for learning from me (the past).