Hi, I'm Kyle and Studio Shifuku is the alchemy which brings together my love and practice of Cha-no-yu with over 15 years experience working with textiles. On the Cha-no-yu side, I actively practice and study the Ueda Sōko Ryū as part of Sōmu Shachū, though many years ago I also studied Ura Senke. On the textiles side, I have been sewing since I was a kid and over the last 15 years have worked variously in the worlds of fashion and interiors, including hand sewing curtains and hand stretched silk lampshades.
In 2018, Adam Sōmu, my Cha-no-yu teacher, asked me if I'd have a go at making a shifuku. And so I turned my considerable sewing experience to unravelling the secrets of the shifuku. And I was hooked! I'd found my calling in these intricate, complex and beautiful pieces. Each one a tiny, individual work of art in its own right. I now focus my work on creating fabric goods for the tea ceremony in particular. I take a contemporary approach to this traditional sphere with the fabrics I use and am continuously experimenting with ideas in decoration and construction.
In 2019 I set up my studio and am now producing stock pieces for my Etsy shop and commissions for tea people around the world. I work closely with my clients to imbue each piece I create with a little something extra special that is unique to them.
I braid all the himo (cords) specifically for each shifuku, using colour, pattern and texture to express a theme or idea or simply to harmonise and tell a story with the fabric and/or the item it's made for.
I have amassed a unique collection of beautiful fabrics, drawn from the worlds of fashion and interior design as well as collected items from my travels and fabrics donated to the collection by clients.
Shifuku sit at the core of my practice but of course I make all and any fabric goods associated with the Japanese Tea Ceremony and am always open to creating something new. Be it researching, learning and creating a specific item or experimenting to create something unique for a client. I am also branching out into Kimono & Obi.
Please contact me here or @shifukubykyle on instagram to discuss a commission or to view the fabric collection.