Fabric Shopping In Tokyo – Yuzawaya and Nippori

Fabric Shopping In Tokyo

One of the most common emails I receive is asking for tips about fabric shopping in Tokyo. This is something I’ve had a little bit of experience with! And now I’m sharing it here for you too – places to go, tips for tourists and a bit of language to help you get that fabric cut. First on the list is where to go! Yuzawaya and Nippori Textile Town are the top two places to go for fabric shopping in Tokyo.


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Yuzawaya

Yuzawaya in Tokyo

Yuzawaya aka ユザワヤ is the all-inclusive craft and hobby store – like Spotlight in Australia or Joann’s in the USA… but better. With several locations around Tokyo, there’s sure to be one near you! Yuzawaya definitely the number one place to go if you have to choose just one place to go, stocking loads of Japanese craft books and fabrics plus sashiko, embroidery supplies including DMC and Cosmo threads, notions, buttons, trims, zippers, patterns, books, yarn and more! They accept cash and credit card, plus cut your fabric in 10cm increments. There is a membership card available for 500 yen for one year that gives you 10% off full-price stock (7% if paying by credit card) if you know a friend with one to borrow or some Japanese to sign up!

Shinjuku – Tucked away on the 11th floor of the Takashimaya Department Store, it’s a small store but contains a large Liberty range of fabrics and accessories, a wall of colour-ordered Japanese blender fabrics and a few rows of designer Japanese fabrics. Getting there takes only 15 minutes on the JR Chuo Rapid (orange) line from Tokyo Station, or from anywhere on the JR Yamanote line. Take the New South exit and cross the bridge directly to the department store. This one is good for the situation where you’re staying close and don’t have very long to go fabric shopping.

Tsudanuma – Only 29 minutes on the JR Sobu Rapid (dark blue) line from Tokyo Station, this is the best Yuzawaya in Tokyo (in my personal opinion and from those who have done several in a row!) Take the West exit from the station and head for the big red ユザワヤ sign on the right side of the street opposite the Morisia shopping mall. The first floor has a huge range of fabrics, plus all your other craft supplies mentioned above. The second floor has a kimono fabric store where you can find cheap scraps and fabric seconds; as well as stationery and a big model train section to entertain the kids. The third floor has a large Daiso store full of 100 yen goodies – check out the stationery section for cheap origami papers and bilingual instruction books!

Right next door is a big book store – Maruzen – which carries a large range of Japanese craft and sewing magazines on the second floor. You can access this from the corner main entrance, or via the second floor of Yuzawaya.

Kichijoji* – Another Yuzawaya located inside a department store. This is on the 7th and 8th floors of the Marui department store out the South exit of the JR Kichijoji station, which you can get to in 29 minutes from Tokyo Station on the JR Chuo Rapid (orange) line.

Kamata* – This is the biggest Yuzawaya in Tokyo, spread across three different buildings! Building 5 is the one with all the fabric and sewing supplies, and you can get there in 22 minutes from Tokyo Station on the JR Keihin-Tohoku (light blue) line and then head out the West exit.

Ginza* – And right in the centre of Tokyo, is yet another Yuzawaya that is a 15-20 minute walk from Tokyo Station. Head out the Yaesu (East) exit and it’s right near the Ginza Metro station.

Nippori Textile Town

Nippori Textile Town, or Nippori Fabric Town, is definitely the other place to go if you don’t have much time to travel around Tokyo. Only 12 minutes from Tokyo Station on the JR Yamanote (light green) loop line, there is a whole street dedicated to fabric and trims galore! Don’t forget to take plenty of cash as the stores only accept cash. From the JR Nippori Station, take the East exit and head to the far right corner street of the “square” outside.

FOOD TIP – At the station, you’ll find a few little restaurants. I highly recommend the Tempura Tendon Tenya for noodles, rice and tempura meals. Delicious, cheap, filling, and they have an English menu!

Tomato – The popular Tomato store includes several locations, but the one quilters want is the four-story building on the lefthand side of the street as you walk from the station. The bottom floor is packed full of clearance fabrics starting from 105 yen ($1) per metre! The fourth floor is where you’ll find all the quilting cottons, including Echino, Kokka and licensed fabrics. You order fabric here by the metre, and hunt high and low on the shelving and in all the corners, as you never know what bargains you will find! Heather Ross for 400 yen ($4) a metre? Melody Miller for 600 yen ($6) a metre? Gotta find it!

The Anonymous Shop – I don’t actually know the name of this store! There is no signage, and it’s tucked under a tall building. But it’s right opposite the big Tomato store, second building from the corner. Downstairs is packed full of cheap precuts and remnants, and upstairs you can find most of these precuts on the bolts. A real treasure trove for traditional prints on cotton, as well as amazing geometric prints.

Mihama – This is the place to go for smaller precuts of designer Japanese prints and Molli Sparkles Approved. It’s on the same side of the street as the big Tomato store and on the first corner heading back to the station (or the corner just before Tomato if coming from the station!). Around the corner is a second building of fabric, so don’t forget to check that out too. We’re talking 2 metres precuts of Kokka and Echino for $6!

*Stores I have not yet visited but either Googled or have friends recommended – I will update when I have!

Other Resources:

My Japanese Language Tips for helping you work out the money and numbers for purchasing your fabric!

Tokyo Craft Guide – This website is run by two foreign ladies living in Tokyo and is full of great tips for craft shopping in Tokyo. Their e-book is a fabulous resource for finding all those little out-of-the-way treasure spots to get to the really unique finds.

Yuzawaya website – In Japanese, but use Google Chrome to auto-translate what it can!

Tomatoes and Jasmine’s guide to fabric shopping in Tokyo

Comments

  1. Great tips, Alyce! I am trying to convince B that we need to head to Japan in the next two years and fabric shopping is on my list of things to do.

    I went to Japan with my school when I was 15 and I can’t wait to go back with my family. I loved it there and I hope they will too.

    Amy
    Amy recently posted…Wordless WednesdayMy Profile

  2. Dōmo arigatōgozaimashita! I’m brushing up on my high school Japanese … one can only hope, right??
    Serena @ Sewgiving recently posted…And Then She Was Two …My Profile

  3. Thank you so much for this. I hope to get to Japan in the next 5 years (spent some time there when I was younger) but wondering how I can keep this comprehensive list for reference! We always said if we ever took the kids to Disneyland it would probably be in Tokyo. I want them to experience the culture too. Thank you.

  4. Wooow I want to come shopping with you!! Or just send you shopping with some of my money – that works too lol

  5. Wow, you’ve done some thorough research. I’ll bet it was fun :)
    Anorina @ Samelia’s Mum recently posted…DIY : Make ButterMy Profile

  6. Oh…in my dreams :-)

  7. Ack… now I want to go to Japan…

  8. Loved loved the bundle this month.. and this is a super cool post……. I even save your stamps… Have you gotten a business card yet.. I love the stickers you added too. The bag is reusable and I am all for that. Gonna jump over to the Etsy shop.
    shirley tener recently posted…SIMPLE SEW STASH REPORT Linking up with PiloFabric stash shareMy Profile

  9. you dont have an Etsy button on your blog???????????????????
    shirley tener recently posted…SIMPLE SEW STASH REPORT Linking up with PiloFabric stash shareMy Profile

  10. Such a great idea for a post! Glad I could provide valuable resource material! Haha. I may be coming back in November and if so I’d say we have some further exploring to do!
    Molli Sparkles recently posted…Time To Trade Him InMy Profile

  11. Thanks, Alyce! I can send this to my brother, and SIL, until I can get there again?!! I have to somehow make her think she is helping me, but really make something form what they pick out :D This post is double bookmarked now, permanently!
    Lizzie recently posted…Soft ReturnMy Profile

  12. Great, great post! I went to Nippori one last time on my very last full day in Japan back in June – in the pouring rain – it is that good! Mihama is definitely my first stop on the way to Tomato. When shopping at Yuzawaya at Takeshimaya Times Square, I always tried to get dumplings at Din Tai Fung on the 12th floor – the line is long but it moves fast and the dumplings are amazing. There is a great gelato place also on the 12th floor – for dessert!

  13. Oh I so wish I could hop on the next plane!!… Do you by any chance know of any place where I could order KAO BUNKA EMBROIDERY THREAD online or even the email / website of the manufacturer? Would so appreciate the info!! Thanks!!

  14. Wow, I am so bummed! I used to work in Kamata all the time in 2001. I can’t believe I missed Yuzawaya!! and so much more! I’ll be wiser next time. Thanks for the info!!! Julie @ RunningHen.blogspot.com

  15. marjolein says:

    Hello

    Do some of these shops have on line shops and worldwide shipment? I’m belgian and probably never get there :) not in the first year(s)

    sincerely

  16. I was wondering if anybody had any ideas on where I can find oriental stencils. I’m looking for Torii gates, pagodas, etc. any help would be great.
    Thank you

  17. Hi there,

    Where is the best place to find fleece fabric? I’m making a knot blanket and already checked tsudanuma’s Yuzawaya. Please let me know!!

  18. Hi Alyce,

    I visited Tokyo last September and your post has been extremely helpful for my fabric shopping.
    Just wanted to say Thank You!
    Pasqualina recently posted…Tokyo // 6 and lastMy Profile

  19. This post and the language tips post were very helpful! Thank you for sharing your knowledge!

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