12" x 12" double layered sashiko panel, dotted lines wash out after stitching. Early 18th Century Japanese wives of farmers, fishermen and lumberjacks made warm garments for the men by stitching two pieces of heavy fabric together using fine running stitches throughout the entire garment. At first, the stitching was used for reinforcing and repairing damaged fabrics but later became more decorative. The cotton fabric was dyed very dark blue with the root of a native plant. We know this color as indigo. By the end of the century, this particular style of stitchery was known as "SASHIKO". Around the late 19th Century, sashiko appeared in cities. The style was adopted for warmth but the stitching designs became more elaborate. Patterns were adopted from kimono prints, fabric weaves and nature such as, bamboo, ocean waves, flowers, etc. Sashiko is also used to decorate pillows, table cloths, runners, purses, potholders and many other things.