originally uploaded by morningk.


I so desperately want to be crafty and have marvelous creations effortlessly spring forth from fingertips. And because the effortlessly part of my dream is so important, I am not crafty.

And yet, this I could do. I could make SWATCH PORTRAITS! Easy. And it mostly requires buying fabric. The distance between buying that fabric and a finished product is short. Perfect.

I have only seen fabric stores in the Mihama & Gushikawa Jusco. Do you know of any other places?



  1. I am a fellow scrapbooker and I was hoping if anyone knew of any good scrapbooking stores there on Okinawa. The kids and I are still waiting for our dratted no fee passports, so we will be following Erik hopefully soon. I’m bulking up on a lot of paper as we speak, and I currently have the Cricut machine and carts. I am looking forward to joining the cropping nights with my new found friends! See y’all soon! Lizz

  2. I will be heading to Okinawa, Japan to visit our son and his family in June 09.
    I am a stamper and I was wondering if anyone
    knows of any stores there carring rubber stamps or speciality paper or anything unique.

  3. Does anyone know of any sewing classes on-base? We’re pcsing there this July and I’m just now starting to sew again – haven’t sewed in over 20 years. Anyway, would love to take classes to brush up on my skills.


  4. For any scrapbookers, paper crafters, and painters there is an art store that has some good washi, chiyogami and random craft supplies.
    They also have wooden and canvas frames for painting and a ton of acrylic, oil, watercolor, and gouache paints. And any mediums and brushes you need to use with them.

    It’s called the green note and it’s between foster and futenma on 58. Just watch for the green building on the west side and turn at those lights. You are supposed to park under the building but there are a few spots out front. *closed sundays*

  5. We were here several years ago, and much enjoyed going to a place we called the “Washi Paper Store”. I am trying to remember where it was exactly, and I think it was between Lester and Foster. Does anyone know where it is, what I am talking about, or if it still exists?

  6. For all those interested in something new to do: I offer beading classes through Kadena Arts & Crafts. There are new classes every month (I am also raking my brain for March). February’s classes are listed with pictures on my website: http://www.freewebs.com/beadingclasses

    I have found that it is rather hard to find a good selection of beads here on the island, nothing like in the states and all the seed beads I use come from Japan….. I am still looking for more local sources. I have plenty of them in the States and mail order a lot from there. Anyone needing info on how to get to the Rainbow House, the little crafts store down the road from there, the bead store Beans by House of 66, the bead store past Futenma, please let me know.

  7. There’s another fabric store called Sanzo near Camp Foster. Directions are as follows:
    -Take a RIGHT out Foster Legion Gate onto 330.
    -Take a LEFT at the pedestrian bridge to continue on 330.
    -Take a RIGHT at the 4th traffic light. There will be a sign under the traffic light that says Futenma South.
    -Sanzo is located on the right corner of approximately the 3rd street. (Just before you reach Sanzo you’ll pass a couple of buildings on the right that say Total Pool Bar and Matsuki Grand Garden.)

  8. I was on the Kadena Services website under tours, and they are doing a fabric house tour and mentioned 2 stores they’d be visiting: Rainbow House and Cotton House. I don’t know where either of them are, but thought I’d share with everyone in case someone else knows of them.

  9. Thanks so much for the info! Anybody have a list of fabric shops nearby? I don’t know where we’ll be living, my husband is stationed an air base? Maybe one without housing? Since we are limited by weight on what we can bring, and I think my sewing room alone would put us over that limit, I’m going to have to leave some behind, so I’ll be replinshing my stash as soon as I arrive. I’m mostly interested in childrens fabrics, tshirt knits, denims etc….

    Thanks again!

  10. I live off base and I was told to plug the microwave & other kitchen appliances (higher voltage suckers) into the transformer they gave us (you are entitled to one if you live off base – and it’s a big one!). Not sure about older buildings- ours was built in 2002 so I know it’s a bit more modern.

    We have all other regular appliances plugged into the walls here and so far (KNOCKING ON MY DESK) all has been well. We just got surge protectors for our audio visual set-up (55″ tv, Wii, PS3, amplifier, surround sound speakers) and computer stuff (wireless modems & Intel iMac desktop & Powerbook laptop), and I think we’re good. My hubby would never do anything to break his babies!

    Pamela, I’d bet you could make friends with a local who could help you with where to buy acrylic and other types of paints and stretched canvas. I’ve had to look for some odd things here, and the locals give incredibly accurate directions considering we don’t speak the language! Good luck, have a smooth and easy move!

  11. I’m so happy to see some fellow crafters. We are PCS’ing to Okinawa very soon. My husband leaves in 1 week. I have elected to stay in the states until he has secured housing (my son and are are going to stay in housing until we’re all set), and also after my dog has successfully passed his FAVN test, hopefully we’ll be there buy December!

    I do have a question for those of you that sew. I’ve gotten mixed answers in the past. Will I have trouble plugging in and using my 5 sewing machines? I’ve always imagined my only problem would be finding a place for them since we’re not bringing my huge custom desk, but have heard stories about wattage, etc. Any insight to this?

  12. Nobia,
    great question! 5 sewing machines! Wow I can just do curtains! I have a very basic singer. Works great on base as we have american voltage. I took it off base to a friend’s house and needed a transformer because the Japanese voltage just wasn’t enough to run it. I think you need one transformer per machine and I think they run 70-200 dollars depending on transformer.
    Also Pamela we do have arts and crafts stores on base that do framing and sell basics like paint, scrapbooking materials, some sewing notions, jewelry making stuff etc. Hope that helps!

  13. Two years ago when I learned we were heading to Japan, I thought for sure I would be swimming in luscious Noro yarn… but I have yet to see even a skein to add to my stash. Makes me think there isn’t even a local supplier here since tropical weather and wool aren’t the best combination. However, there is an active knitting community here with classes on base and a lively group of knitters that meet every 2nd and 4th Tuesday of the month at the Drive-Thru Starbucks across from Camp Lester, Gate 1. Julie’s right – most everyone purchases yarn online, no LYS to be seen (besides Jusco and 100 yen stores). So April, now you have an excuse to buy more yarn before you arrive in Okinawa. Happy knitting!

  14. thanks for the info it is nice to know there are good fabric stores there since when I can in January I will most likely have to leave all the here. Any one know if they have Yarn stores?I do all kinds of crafts sewing is just one of many but it keeps me from having the same ball gown as anyone else!

  15. Have you checked out the House of 66 Cents behind Camp Foster? There are two buildings, one closer to the street and one a bit behind it. The one behind it has a larger selection of Japanese kimono type fabrics and what looks like Okinawan fabric. Turn right out of legion gate and it’s on that road (330?) a piece on your left. (If you reach 58 you’ve gone too far.) You’ll see a big ‘ole sign that says House of 66 Cents/Shalimar.

    P.S. You can take your fabric to the frame shop and dry mount it and just tape the ends behind it. It’s a bit more expensive than just pinning it behind a board, but it gets all of the wrinkles out! (If you ask them, they’ll prob. let you do it and not charge you sevice.)