Book Review: New Classic Patchwork by Yoko Saito


Are you a fan of Japanese patchwork? I am. And Yoko Saito is one of my favorite quilt artists. She is famous for her beautiful, intricate patterns which I believe are all hand-pieced. I made a couple blocks out of this beautiful book and now I’ll show you…

So when Interweave Press sent me a copy of Yoko Saito’s new book New Classic Patchwork to review, I was excited to try one of her designs myself. I had this small collection of traditional taupe Japanese fabrics from Lecien (Yoko is famous for her expert use of taupe fabrics), but I didn’t dare attempt hand piecing. Isn’t a Japanese sewing machine close enough? (Here’s the only mini quilt I ever hand pieced)

So I threaded it up with taupe and got to work.

I picked this design: the Triangle Puzzle. It was my first time to piece with templates, and I had lots to learn! I was careful to observe Yoko’s color choices… and try to learn from the master.

So here’s mine. It truly did fit together like a puzzle, and when I opened it up after sewing the final seam I laughed in delight! I could hardly believe that I managed to sew a Japanese-looking block. I love the real ones so much.

And that was so much fun that I immediately made another one. I couldn’t wait to try some of my other favorite colors. Here is my second little Triangle Puzzle mini-quilt, this time in red, black and white (& gray).

New Classic Patchwork by Yoko Saito is available {here} from Interweave/F&W Press.  It contains 78 block designs and 10 beautiful projects.


Do you want to win a copy? Just tell me in the comments below which block you like best… my taupe one or my red & black one? I love them both and and curious to see what others think.

I’ll close the comments and let pick the winner on Monday night, April 28th. Good luck! 

***Update*** This giveaway is now closed. Congrats to our winner Karen!

disclosure: Interweave Press provided this book to me in exchange for my blog review. I tried a pattern from the book and have expressed my honest opinion. Thanks!

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Disclosure: some of my posts contain affiliate links. If you purchase something through one of those links I may receive a small commission, so thank you for supporting SewCanShe when you shop! All of the opinions are my own and I only suggest products that I actually use. 🙂

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  1. Sandy Allen says:

    Love the taupe one the best! Thanks for sharing your experience with making the block, too.

    Sandy A

  2. Surprised myself by liking the taupe one best! Thanks for sharing!!

  3. I like the red and black one best.

  4. Carin Aschan says:

    It’s hard to choose, but I’ll go with the taupe one. I would love to try it out myself!

  5. Rebekah Gruel says:

    I like the red one…but my three year old boy really likes the green one:)

  6. Sam Morris says:

    Love brights so it has to be the red for me.

  7. Like the red with the gray.

  8. Janie McCombs says:

    I have to go with the Taupe. I have no clue as to why but, it looks amazing. Thanks for the giveaway.

  9. Michele Timms says:

    I really love the Taupe – interesting block!!!

  10. Lynn Miller says:

    I love the taupe block. The colors are beautiful and the effect is so calm and peaceful.

  11. Patti Levine says:

    I to love the taupe block. Such beautiful fabrics filled with simplicity!

  12. I love the Taupe one, I have seen some of these designs on Pinterest and have been puzzled on how they assemble. I can’t wait to get a hold of this book.
    Thank you for the chance to win,
    April Wells

  13. Elizabeth Larson says:

    I like the black and red one, probably because black and red are the colors in my house. They look really complicated and I love puzzles !

  14. Red and black for sure!

  15. I honestly can’t decide which I like more! The taupe is soft and calming, but the red and black is modern and striking

  16. I love the taupe one. which is surprising to me b/c I usually go for bright/contrasty colors. something about it is so calming and soothing. :>

  17. I’m a fan of the taupe one – i like the calm,soothing fall-like colors.

    bab5313 (at) psu (dot) edu

  18. Donna Widerquist says:

    I go for the taupe one. Those are my kind of colors.

  19. I usually go for bright and funky but I really like the taupe!!! =)

  20. I like the red, gray & black.

  21. Marla Nelson says:

    They are both beautiful but the red really pops. It looks like a great book. Glad you are enjoying it.

  22. What fun blocks…I like the red one best! Looks like a great book…thanks for the sweet giveaway 🙂

  23. I like the Taupe one best, I do like the red, but today I would go Taupe.

  24. I like the Taupe one. Good job on a tricky looking block!

  25. Mónica Ferri says:

    El q más me gusta es el de colores verdes y marrones, es más del estilo de Yoko Saito y sus telas japonesas.

  26. I like them both, but the taupe one really makes my heart sing. I, too, have been collecting Japanese taupes and related fabrics and am waiting for the perfect project. Maybe I’ll find it in this book.

  27. Mónica Ferri says:

    El q más me gusta es el de tonalidades verdes y marrones (es más del estilo de Yoko Saito).

  28. Love the red and black, great contrast

  29. I LOVE the red and black one!

  30. The red and black is my favorite!

  31. LouiseMarie says:

    Red and black. i like the other one also, but i like the red and black more.

  32. They’re both very pretty but I love red so the red and black is my favorite. Thanks for the chance!
    ap_lemos at yahoo dot com

  33. They’re both very pretty but I love red so the red and black is my favorite. Thanks for the chance!
    ap_lemos at yahoo dot com

  34. Love the red and black block. Thanks for the great giveaway

  35. Sharon Galli says:

    I like the red one!

  36. knitminnie96 says:

    I like the taupe one the best. I like the color red, but I think the taupe one is more inviting and easy on the eye. Colors don’t jump around so much with the taupe.

  37. I like the taupe one, the subtleness is what grabs me. Soothing to look at!

  38. I think I like the contrast of the red one better. Perhaps I’m just not used to the Japanese way of doing things.
    lin3841 at gmail dot com

  39. Cindy Dahlgren says:

    I’m not a fan of muted colors, so I like the red and black best.

  40. Pauline Perry says:

    It is hard to choose they are both great – but if I had to make a choice I would pick the taupe.

  41. I like the taupe. Well done on making both.

  42. Lately I have logged into Japanese quilting. So it was funny to see your post. I would love to win this book so I could learn. They have such great talent over there.

  43. Barbara Long says:

    Even though I consider myself a contemporary quilter with modern leanings, I love the traditional block. Beautiful work

  44. Lynn Miller says:

    Love the taupe block; it really speaks to me.

  45. thanks for the opportunity to win. I have a stack of her fabric waiting to start a project

  46. Catherine Silling says:

    I vote traditional Japanese taupe. nice work!

  47. Geni Pickens says:

    Love the taupe block!! They are both very nice though.

  48. Kathy Harris says:

    While I do like the taupes, I love that you tried it in modern, bright colors. I think I’ll have to try some of her other blocks in modern colors.

  49. Angeline Taylor says:

    I like the red and black one! Just because I’m not a fan of neutrals!

  50. Cindy Lucas says:

    I love them both – and would like them both! The pop of red would bring such color any kitchen, but the neutrals would work to keep the earth tones balanced. Great work !

  51. Anonymous says:

    My favorite is the taupe however they are both pretty

  52. Rhonda Young says:

    I like the red one the best as it is nice and bright.

  53. Rani Self says:

    I like both but the taupe one is the winner for me!

  54. I like stars and puzzles so I pick Triangle Puzzle. Looks like this book would be fun to follow.

    1. I need to say the taupe hit my fancy. Although blue is usually my favorite color

  55. Carmen Nuland says:

    I like them both – but the red one really "pops"!

  56. Kuti Éva says:

    I like the taupe one 🙂

  57. I love the puzzle triange balck!!!

  58. I too am a fan of Japanese patchwork and love the taupe block. This would be a wonderful book to have!

  59. Kathy Stewart says:

    The red one!

  60. Lisa Barrett Cecil says:

    I’d love to win a copy!

  61. I like both your blocks. The taupe is for when you need calm and the red for when you need excitement ! My dream is to one day make Yoko Saito’s patchwork town.

  62. My favorite colors are the red and black, but my favorite block is the taupe, I think because of the lower contrast between the colors, it makes my eyes spin around the block. Thanks for the giveaway!

  63. I like the taupe one better, but both are nice.

  64. I like the taupe one best…I have a small collection of taupes that I’ve been saving, and your block tempts me to start using them.

  65. I like the taupe one best…I have a small collection of taupes that I’ve been saving, and your block tempts me to start using them.

    Lyn (catalysttx (at) satx (dot) rr (dot) com )

  66. Jeannie D says:

    Although the taupe is wonderfully mysterious I prefer the red and grey because the contrast of the colors make the pattern pop!


  67. Regina Earl Arlauckas says:

    Love them both but I think I like the subtle tones of the taupe better.

  68. I love the red and gray one! And, I’d love to win the book 🙂

  69. Michelle Holloway says:

    I like the bright colors for spring!

  70. Lesley Johnston says:

    i really like the red – it seems to make it pop with the black. i like the taupe also, but the red stands out a bit more!

  71. Pramudita Andaristi Bybee says:

    I like the red one better! I just love how the color really pops compared to the more neutral background 🙂 I agree with you though, both are pretty!

  72. I like the taupe quilt block. The subtleness brings my eye in to see what is actually happening in the block.

  73. Very cute! I like the taupe colors best.

  74. Marcia cesena says:

    I love the red and black one.

  75. Barb Dawson says:

    Red & black-just cuz I like bright colors!

  76. I like them both, but if I had to pick one, it would be the neutral color one.

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