Breeze by Megumi Sawada

Breeze by Megumi Sawada

Both the English and Japanese editions of amirisu Issue 24 were released earlier this month on June 10. The twelve designs in this issue are all inspired by each designer’s heritage and personal story. We will be showcasing the designs here on our blog by sharing some short conversations with designers who contributed to this issue.

Today we are talking with Megumi Sawada about her chic design Breeze, how she got started knitting, and two of her favorite places in Tokyo. Let's start the interview!

amirisu: What challenges did you encounter during the design process?
Megumi: I always start with the yarn or a sample of knitted fabric when I go to start a new design. The knitting fabric with Stra is really interesting, I enjoyed experimenting with it so much that I used a whole skein knitting up different swatches. I used two stitch patterns for this design, and I think that the yarn combines with these stitch patterns for a really unique fabric.
I wanted the shape of the garment to follow the line of the body when worn so I paid extra attention to the section from the upper back to the neckline as well as the shape and depth of the armholes. I reworked them several times to make sure everything was how I wanted. The completed design is exactly as I had envisioned it, so it was well worth the effort.

amirisu: If you were to knit this design in another color, what would it be?Megumi: I’d like to knit one in S7 for that hint of green.

amirisu: How did you start your knitting journey?
Megumi: I started knitting when I was around 10. I was reading a craft book for kids and it just happened to include a pattern for knitted socks. I really wanted to try making them, so that was my inspiration to start knitting.
One of my mom’s friends taught me how to do knit and purl stitches and I got started following the pattern from the book. I remember being so excited to see the heel taking shape. After that I kept knitting little by little.

amirisu: Tell us a little bit about a favorite place of yours in the town or area you grew up in or where you live now.
Megumi: I live in Tokyo and I like to visit the large parks in the city like Yoyogi Park or the Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden to soak up a little power from all the greenery. Entry to Shinjuku Gyoen requires a small fee, but there are so many different plants there that there’s always something interesting to see. It’s a great place to just relax and walk around.

amirisu: What is one handicraft or traditional art or skill from your country or region that you like or have an interest in?
Megumi: I think my favorite traditional Japanese craft is Sashiko. It’s a type of embroidery where you create designs using running stitch. Now there are all sorts of designs to choose from, everything from really traditional motifs to playful modern ones. The simple, repetitive stitches help me clear my mind and it’s fun to see the design come together as you work.

 Thank you for your time, Megumi!



初回は、英語版の表紙を飾ったロングベスト、BreezeをデザインしてくれたMegumi Sawadaさんにお話を伺っています。

amirisu: デザインの過程で、どんな苦労や工夫がありましたか?
Megumi: いつも糸や編み地からデザインを考えるのですが、今回使用したStraは編み地が面白く、イメージに合う編み地が見つかるまで楽しくひとかせスワッチを編みまくりました。今回2種類の模様を使っているのですが、どちらもStraならではの編み地になったのではないかなぁと思います。



amirisu: もう一枚編むとしたら何色で編みますか?
Megumi: グリーンの入ったS7で編みたいです。


amirisu: 編み物を始めたきっかけは何でしたか?
Megumi: 10歳の頃、たまたま読んでいた子ども向けの手芸の本に棒針編みの靴下が載っていたのを見て、編みたいと思ったのがきっかけです。



amirisu: あなたの住む町や生まれ育った町の好きな場所はどこですか?簡単に紹介してください。
Megumi: 東京に住んでいるのですが、代々木公園や新宿御苑など大きな公園が都心にもあり、時々訪れて緑のパワーをもらっています。新宿御苑は入園が有料ですが、いろんな種類の植物が植わっていたりして飽きません。のんびりするだけでもおすすめの場所です。


amirsiu: あなたの国や地域に伝わる手工芸や技術について、好きなものを一つ選んで教えてください。
Megumi: 日本に伝わる手工芸で好きなものは刺し子でしょうか。布に一針ずつ刺して行くことで模様を描いていく刺繍なのですが、最近では伝統的な図柄から近代的な図柄まで、いろんな図柄があって、面白いです。1針ひと針縫って行くことで無心にもなれますし、その結果布地に素敵な模様が浮かび上がってくるのも嬉しいです。


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