INSIDE: The Ultimate Guide to Fabric Shopping in Japan and where to buy fabric in Tokyo. Updated 2019.
Dressmakers, craft lovers and sewing enthusiasts will adore Japanese fabric shopping in Japan.
The designs range include kawaii cute character fabric, pretty florals, Japanese Liberty prints, and more traditional Japanese fabrics such as indigo dyed linen, so there’s something for everyone.
Here’s a list of some of the beautiful Japanese fabrics you can find in Japan:
- Japanese kimono fabric and cotton kimono fabric
- Japanese silk fabric
- traditional Japanese fabric prints
- Japanese fabric used in many traditional souvenirs, called Chirimen crepe material (Hot tip: Visiting Kyoto? Stop by the Chirimen craft museum in Kyoto)
- Japanese print fabric
- Japanese indigo fabric
- Japanese cotton fabric
- Japanese quilting fabric
- Japanese knit fabric
- Japanese dress fabric
- Japanese themed fabric, including Disney fabric, and Japanese character fabric
- Kawaii fabric (cute Japanese fabric) with hand-drawn cats, dogs, toadstools, woodland themes, and animals (I LOVE THESE!)
- 1 WHERE TO BUY FABRIC IN TOKYO
- 2 Tokyo Fabric District – Nippori Fabric Town
- 3 MORE IDEAS OF WHERE TO BUY JAPANESE FABRIC
- 4 Where to buy Japanese Fabric – plant dyed
- 5 Where to buy Japanese Indigo Fabric
- 6 Where to buy Japanese Quilting Fabric
- 7 Where to buy Japanese silk fabric
- 8 Where to buy Kimono fabric
- 9 Japanese fabric crafts & Japanese toy crafts
- 10 Looking for more places to shop in Japan?
- 11 Subscribe
- 12 Bookmark Roam the Gnome
WHERE TO BUY FABRIC IN TOKYO
First stop – Nippori Fabric Town
This is the centrepiece of fabric stores in Tokyo. If you are want to put fabric shopping in Tokyo on your Tokyo itinerary, you must save a full day for a visit, especially if you are a budding designer, design student, or simply a lover of crafts.
Nippori Textile Town is huge – there are 88 shops lining the main Nippori shopping street (Nippori Chuo-dori street) and it’s side streets. Take a look at this Nippori Fabric Town english map to see a visual of Nippori textile.
How to find Nippori Town
North-east of the city center of Tokyo, simply catch the train to Nippori station on the JR East Yamanote line, and you’ll be right there. Follow the signs and directions to Nippori town.
Nippori Tokyo has every kind of Japanese fabric, fabric notions and sewing accessories, traditional Japanese clothing, western clothing, men’s and women’s clothing, children’s clothing, textile products, trims, patches, Japanese crafts books, AND Japanese house coats and Japanese house mother apron patterns (and ready made ones too)!
Tokyo Fabric District – Nippori Fabric Town
Here’s a full list of all the shops on the street, but these ones listed below should be top of your list.
MOMO Nippori Store #5
MOMO Nippori Store is a shop full of natural fabrics and clothes made from silk, cotton, linen, and hemp hand-woven, or wool.
Pakira Knit-Kan I & II #8/16
- Pakira has two branches in Nippori, located near the entrance of Nippori Textile Town
- One of the shops sells knits fabric exclusively
- The one closer to the train station is the only fabric shop in Nippori with Liberty prints. It also has cotton, lace, and super fun glitter fabrics for costumes and cosplay.
- Elegance stocks high quality knits and jersey fabrics.
Yasuda Shoten 5th Street Store #13
- Yasuda Shoten 5th street store stocks printed Japanese fabric in cotton material, and also Japanese pattern print and wool, linen, and sailcloth
- The most famous shop here is called Tomato fabric store.
- There’s six Tomato fabric shops on the Nippori fabric town map, including the Tomato Arch shop with discount casual clothes and outlet fabrics including denim and fleece. Tomato fabric shops are easy to spot, with a giant tomato on the signage. No, it’s not a grocer!
- Each store sells something different. One sells lace, domestic and import fabrics. Another sells custom made curtains and interior fabrics for home decoration and upholstery, while another stocks notions, buttons and beads.
- There’s even a Tomato fabric printing factory making custom made fabric.
- The main Tomato store in Nippori fabric town is a five-storey treasure trove selling a large selection of cotton fabrics , novelty cotton prints, terry towelling, knit fabric, silks, and linen fabric. Bargain shoppers should look out for the discount fabrics section where every fabric is 100 yen per yard! There’s even fancy Japanese designer fabric by Japanese designers such as Kokka and Nani Iro.
- Credit cards are accepted (Mastercard, Visa).
- Tomato stores are open until 6pm daily but closed on Sundays.
- This shop sells emblems for your backpack or blanket, buttons and DIY handicraft kits too.
- The main shop sells crepe and cotton printed fabrics, leather, lace and linings.
- The knit shop sells knit fabric and jacquard cotton
- The Nagato Wool shop is a Wool Fabrics speciality shop, also selling velvet and silk
- Japanese pattern fabrics and Japanese kimono fabric
Cosmode CLOTHic #20
This is the place to find fabrics for cosplay, and to have a custom made costume created just for you!
MORE IDEAS OF WHERE TO BUY JAPANESE FABRIC
Looking for where to find Japanese fabrics for sale? Buy Japanese fabric by the yard at these stores:
Yuzawaya Japanese fabric store
Yuzawaya is a chain of Japanese fabric stores across Japan. They have stores in Tokyo, Saitama, Chiba, Kyoto, Osaka, Nara, Hiroshima, Hokkaido and more.
The Yuzawaya Shibata store is the biggest. You’ll find:
- stage costume cloth and fabric for cosplay
- special traditional Japanese fabrics and lining
- handicraft materials and sewing machines
- craft materials
- mens and womens ready made clothes
- wool and yarn
- needle felting and felting supplies
- leatherwork supplies and resin for jewellery
- stained glass supplies
- notions for sewing including beads, flower material, buttons, ribbon, and twine
- art supplies, and calligraphy supplies
- strangely, jigsaw puzzles and railway models- perfect for those who have a husband in tow!
Yuzawaya has the biggest selection of limited edition and regular Liberty prints in Japan. They sell fabric by yardage starting at just 10cm.
They even have free classes in-store, AND regular sales!
Hot tip: find a friend who speaks Japanese and sign up to become a member for 500 yen, and you’ll receive 20% off your purchases from day one.
Okadaya Japanese fabric shop in Shinjuku
Okadaya is a multi-storey fabric shop in Shinjuku hidden down a little laneway. You need to look hard to find the entrance – it’s not the easiest of places to find but keep looking till you do. Okadaya fabric store is filled with knits, Japanese novelty fabrics, Japanese cotton fabrics, and Japanese quilting fabrics. Look for the discount tables outside for a clue, and do take the time to have a scramble through the stuff there.
Just a few metres away, the main Okadaya building has an extensive range of notions for Japanese sewing crafts, craft materials and craft kits for the person who loves to make things.
Head upstairs to find the Japanese craft books and magazines section. This is my favourite part of the store.
Momenya Makino in Shimokitazawa
Shimokitazawa is a cute town for crafty people so do make a visit.
While you are there, visit Momenya Makino fabric store in Shimokitazawa. Dress appropriately – there’s a jungle of fabric and fabric bolts to scramble through and amongst. Flat shoes and sturdy clothing is best! The staff are super helpful and can point you in the right direction if you need assistance.
They about 5000 kinds of fabrics, handicrafts, and ready-made aprons in store.
Otsukaya in Kurumamichi, Nagoya
Take cash if you plan on heading out to this monster-sized Japanese fabric store, about two hours in total from Tokyo on the Hikari train. Get directions to Kurumamichi station from Nagoya (11 minutes local train), then ask the train station manager to show you the correct exit to find Otsukaya.
This five-storey fabric store in Japan is the cheapest, and has the best largest range of Japanese fabric for all purposes, including speciality cotton fabrics, Japanese printed cotton fabrics and one of a kind fabrics. Budget shoppers should keep an eye out for the discount fabrics section on the 1st floor.
There’s costumes including Disney, Ninja and karate dress ups on the 4th floor. You can also find Japanese chirimen fabric in beautiful designs.
When you need a little break from the overwhelm of Japanese fabric choices, enjoy a coffee and cake in the cafe on the 2nd floor.
Hobbyra-Hobbyre craft store sells Hobby La Hobby Liberty prints which are fabric patterns selected by Hobbyra-Hobbyre that are more suitable for handicrafts and the Japanese aesthetic loved by local women.
They also sell Liberty print products from the Liberty Fabric Collection. The Seasonal Collection is the latest collection released twice a year in Paris in spring/summer and fall/winter, and features a theme every season. The Eternal Collection is a collection of popular patterns in Japan. Prints come in all kinds of fabric, including Flanders linen, jersey, canvas, corduroy, and cotton.
Hobbyra-Hobbyre also stock Japanese linen fabric, Japanese wool fabric, plain and floral cotton fabric, dot and stripe patterns, lace fabric and cotton blends.
Where to buy Japanese Fabric – plant dyed
Where to buy fabric in Tokyo that has been plant dyed with natural colours? This shop is the place to go!
Maito Komuro Atelier in Kuramae
Textile store Maito Komuro atelier shop is located in Kuramae, Taito-ku, Tokyo. They stock a wide range of fabrics naturally dyed with the extracts from flowers, leaves and roots.
They sell plant-dyed nut buttons, plant dyed yarn, plant dyed woven towels, plant dyed cotton fabric, plant dyed lace, plant dyed socks knitted in Nara, and plant dyed clothing and knits in colours ranging from sakura pink, mulberry yellow, and indigo blue.
If you have time, take a peek at the production site next door to the shop. This is where they host plant dyeing workshops each month. Join a class to get behind the scenes!
Where to buy Japanese Indigo Fabric
Where to buy fabric in Tokyo that has been hand-dyed using indigo? Try one of these.
Maito Komuro atelier shop
Textile store Maito Komuro atelier shop (mentioned above) has a small range of Japanese indigo fabric from time to time.
Blue and White store in Tokyo
Another place to find Japanese Indigo Fabric is the Blue and White store. Blue & White is an original and quirky shop in Tokyo presenting the best of blue and white handmade crafts to Azabu Juban and the world for 35 years. Indigo and sashiko, yukata and tenugui are carefully chosen to highlight the beautiy of the blue and white traditon of Japan.
- Open every day, 11 am to 6 pm. Address: 2-9-2 Azabu Jūban, Minato-ku, Tokyo
Bingoya Folk Crafts Shop
The third floor of Bingoya folk crafts shop sells indigo dyed cloth, indigo fabric, and indigo dyed scarves, among other things.
- Open every day, 11 am to 6 pm. Regular holiday: every Monday and the third Saturday. Address: 2-9-2 Azabu Jūban, Minato-ku, Tokyo.
- Access: Just in front of Wakamatsu-Kawada Oedo-Line Subway station
Kosoen Studio in Ome City
You can also visit the Kosoen studio in Ome City, in western Tokyo to see Japanese Indigo dyeing in action, and purchase indigo goods such as scarves, placemats, coasters, table runners, pillow covers, bags, and fabric from time to time.
Kosoen is one of a few Studios that has survived to the present day by stubbornly maintaining the traditional way of Aizome – Japanese Indigo dyeing.
- Address: Nagabuchi 8-200, Ome-city, Tokyo, Japan 198-0052
- Map: Click here
Where to buy Japanese Quilting Fabric
Where to buy fabric in Tokyo for quilting?
- Momenya Makino in Kichijoji has a range of beautiful Japanese quilting fabric. Take a sneak peek here.
- The top floor of Otsukaya in Kurumamichi, Nagoya has a good selection of quilting cottons and Japanese-style fabric too.
- Hobbyra Hobbyre sells a number of Japanese quilting fabric in kid-friendly motifs, and simple patterns. Find Hobby La Hobby stores in Japan here.
Where to buy Japanese silk fabric
You can buy Japanese silk fabric, both plain silk and Japanese patterned silk with elegant seasonal motifs such as autumn leaves and sakura flowers, at the larger fabric stores such as Tomato in Nippori town, or Otsukaya in Nagoya. (see above)
If you have an interest in silk, there is a Silk Museum in Yokohama too.
Where to buy Kimono fabric
Where to buy fabric in Tokyo – Kimono style.
Furigiya second hand stores
Try searching for ‘furugiya’ (second hand stores) and antique flea markets to see original designs and find treasures other people no longer want or need, or the quaint shopping street Yanaka Ginza for kimono sellers.
Shops specializing in kimono are called “Gofuku-ya” or “Gofuku-ten”. You can often find a Gofuku on the upper levels within a Japanese Department store such as Mitsukoshi, and Takashiyama in Nihonbashi, and Isetan in Shinjuku. Did you know Mitsukoshi’s original kimono store began in the Nihonbashi district almost 350 years ago, in 1673?
You can repurpose silk fabric from preloved Japanese kimonos for handicrafts too.
Japanese fabric crafts & Japanese toy crafts
Once you’ve discovered where to buy fabric in Tokyo, and you are ready to start sewing, here’s some inspiration:
- You can find Japanese fabric shopping bag patterns, and patterns for Japanese toys, Japanese homewares and more at Hobbyra Hobbyre
- Here’s a page of free Japanese patterns and guides on how to read them
- How to make Odetama juggling balls
- How to make traditional Japanese crafts using chirimen crepe fabric
Looking for more places to shop in Japan?
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