Shippo Flowers by Margaret Lee

21st June 2024

When we put together this newsletter each week, our hope is to provide you with a little joy, some inspiration, a sense of being connected and maybe even a little education along the way.

By now you will have read the title of our feature project above and are probably wondering what on earth are Shippo Flowers? We’re glad you asked… and with that, let’s begin our education session for this week!

Shippo Flowers by Margaret Lee is featured in her latest book ‘The Art of Bead Embroidery Japanese-Style 2’ and uses a traditional Japanese geometric pattern to create a design of repeating flowers worked using beads.

This design is inspired by a wagara pattern called shippo. Wagaras are Japanese patterns passed down through generations and are rich with cultural significance. Originally, they were seen on traditional Japanese clothing such as kimono and yukata.

The shippo pattern can be traced back to the 8th century and is regarded as auspicious and symbolises prosperity, bonds of good relationship and the unending and expanding chain of harmony and peace.

The structure of the shippo pattern is formed using circles overlapping in quarters, resulting in shapes that resemble petals.

In Shippo Flowers, the shippo shape is expanded to incorporate an eight-pointed flower linked by a secondary pattern.

Using this framework as her base, Margaret then expands her vision for the piece developing additional patterns that are layered and integrated to create a final kaleidoscope of beaded magic.

As there is so much more to the thought process and structure that goes into creating these masterful projects, one of the fascinating elements of the book The Art of Bead Embroidery Japanese-Style 2 is that Margaret explains her reasoning and methodology at each stage, while at the same time providing step-by-step embroidery instructions.

This results in a very rich and rewarding needlework experience as you learn both the needlework technicalities and design theory as you go.

Once completed you will have a finished panel measuring 14.5cm x 21.5cm wide (5 3⁄4″ x 8 1⁄2″) that fits perfectly inside the lid of Margaret’s gorgeous custom-made Daisy Embroidered Panel Display Box.

New to bead-embroidery Japanese-style? Shippo Flowers is a great place to start thanks to the repeating pattern – lots of opportunity to practice and perfect your technique.

Thus ends today’s lesson, now it’s time for play… box of needles anyone?

Make Your Own Shippo Flowers

All the materials you need to re-create this project have been sourced for you in our Ready-to-Stitch kit, with the instructions available separately in the book The Art of Bead Embroidery Japanese-Style 2.

Printed Books

The Art of Bead Embroidery Japanese-Style 2


Shippo Flowers – BEJS2 Kit

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