Fusae Urabe



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address: 3840-55 Nagaoka, Ibaragi-cho, Higashiibaragi-gun,Ibaragi-ken, Japan 311-3116
date of birth: 1952, Ibaragi-ken
education & training 1970-72 Bunka Women's University, Fashion.
1986 Licensed Professional Chef
'Fushiginoiroito' workshops & exhibition 1991-1999, 2001
work experience: 

1972-74 Fashion Clothing company, full time.
1975-77 Clothing Factory, full-time
1977- Medical Centre, B&B business, telephone operator, sales assistant.

profile Fusae Urabe began her career in dressmaking, moving later into quilt making. Her knitting skills are self-taught and she feels they are limited. When in difficulty she uses other techniques. Because of her lack of confidence about her knitting, she began combining knitting and patchwork, using knitted parts as pieces of fabric. For example, her first piece, 'Pumpkins' was made using this method. By stitching together many small knitted pieces in various colours and textures, she made a beautiful sweater. This looked like a field of fresh pumpkins, and was very popular. She also enjoyed the experience of hunting through many shops to find the exact 'pumpkin' colours she needed.

The following years, however, were rather difficult for her as she struggled to express herself. Holding our workshop in a gallery sometimes confuses ordinary knitters. She has now settled down, and is developing her own techniques.

Cutting a family kimono seems like a criminal act, especially for the older generation. The kimono was once valued like jewellery, but this traditional attitude has almost died out. It is hard to know what to do with the many kimonos that are left. Should we keep them for the next generation, or use the material for dresses, cushions or exhibition pieces as she does?