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Soft, Warm, Felt Patches
post : 2014.06.17 13:00
These patches have really soft motifs, using what people think of as Okinawan such as Yanbaru Kuina (Okinawan rail) and hiija (Okinawan word meaning “goat,” “yagi” in Japanese). Along with its texture, you feel really comforted just by taking a look at them.
If you go down a narrow alley in Motobu Town Public Market, you will find a shop displaying fancy sundries around the corner. This sundry shop is called “Shima Shima Kaisha.”
The shop owner, Ms. Miwa Okuno, is from Osaka.
Eleven years ago she moved to Okinawa to live on Ishigaki Island, and has been living here in Motobu Town since about three years ago.
Okuno-san had been looking to live with nature around her, and decided to move to Okinawa. She has been loving drawing pictures and started making “keshigomu hanko (Eraser Stamp)” on Ishigaki Island, where she enjoyed making postcards and washcloths. However, since she moved to Motobu Town, she has started making felt patches.
Okuno-san, who loves animal pictorial books, made patches with a motif of “Yanbaru Kuina,” which inhabits only Yanbaru of Okinawa, and other animals in Okinawa.
“I want the earth to be more comfortable for both animals and people to live in.”
She puts her passion into patches by making them one by one with her own hands.
Once she started selling her patches at “Shima Shima Kaisha,” she has been receiving custom-orders. Accordingly, she has been having fans, little by little.
Without sketching out the basic shape of the subject, she draws a picture by using her needle. Her patches looks cute anywhere you put them, on your clothes or bags, etc. Their soft presence has not only its soft texture but also Okuno-san’s kind wish to “Treasure the connection of lives.”
Shima Shima Kaisha
Address: In Motobu Town Public Market, 4 Toguchi, Motobu Town
Okinawa CLIP Photo Writer Masayuki Sesoko