Beautiful blocks alert! A peek at Yoko Saito’s Traditional Block Patterns

As promised, we’re continuing to share with you books from Stitch Publications, now distributed by Martingale. Today we’re taking a peek into Yoko Saito’s Traditional Block Patterns—but you may not have seen traditional beauties quite like this before!

Yoko Saito's Traditional Block Patterns

Did you know that famed Japanese master quilter Yoko Saito was first inspired to quilt after seeing antique quilts during a visit to the United States? You can see the influence of American quiltmaking in this stunning volume, featuring 66 of Ms. Saito’s favorite block designs. Her approach to color—so unique that it has its own name, “taupe color”—relies on subtle hues and tints that bring a soft and dreamy neutral color palette to life.

From Yoko Saito's Traditional Block Patterns

Yoko Saito’s Traditional Block Patterns includes three main sections to inspire your creativity. First, the Shape patterns: Drunkard’s Path, Nine Patch, Log Cabin, hexagons, and triangle blocks, along with 10 projects to make, such as this gorgeous Grandmother’s Flower Garden Handbag:

Grandmother's Flower Garden Handbag

Next, the Object patterns: star, basket, house, floral, and tree blocks that will take your breath away. One of our favorite projects from this section (13 projects in all) is the Spool Cabinet Wall Hanging—a must-sew for anyone with a quilting space, big or small!

Spool Cabinet Wall Hanging

Yoko SaitoThe final section includes step-by-step lessons for Ms. Saito’s approach to sewing and pressing, along with her picks for essential quilting notions and tools. She hand pieces everything she makes, and you’ll get her helpful tips for precise stitching.

Of course, you can choose to sew by machine, but take a look at this video of Yoko Saito sewing a Log Cabin block by hand at Fall Quilt Market—her speed and precision are mesmerizing!

Reading this post in email? Click here to view the video.

The simple tools she uses really speed things along—just watching her makes us want to try her technique. She makes it look so easy!

Projects in the book range from a bag that features one block:

Washington Evergreen Bag
Washington Evergreen Handbag

To a spectacular sampler quilt that features 30 blocks.

Sampler Quilt
Thirty blocks plus a stunning appliquéd border (full-sized pattern sheets included)

Yoko Saito's Traditional Block PatternsWe’re giving away a copy of Yoko Saito’s Traditional Block Patterns to one lucky winner today! To enter the giveaway, tell us in the comments:

How friendly are you with handwork?

  • I love handwork—it’s my favorite part of making things.
  • I enjoy handwork and usually have a hand-sewing project nearby.
  • Me and my machine are best buds, so I’ll be a whiz whipping up the blocks in this book by machine!

We’ll choose a random winner one week from today and let you know by email if you win. Good luck!

Feeling inspired to play the Yoko Saito way? Order your copy of Yoko Saito’s Traditional Block Patterns at our website, ShopMartingale. And stay tuned for more peeks of Stitch Publications books coming soon!


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