What does Saori mean?

Saori is a Japanese word made up of two parts. “Sa” comes from Sai (the Zen vocabulary) meaning everything has its own individual dignity, “ori” means to weave.


What is Saori weaving?

It is a freestyle method of hand weaving. Saori weaving was begun in Japan around 1970 by a remarkable lady named Misao Jo. One day while weaving an obi she discovered it was flawed by having a missing warp thread. Misao Jo liked the effect of this cloth. She decided to continue in this manner as it was a method of self-expression rather than a copy of a perfect cloth as made by a machine.


Do you need a Saori loom to weave this way?

Saori weaving can be done on any type of loom from a table loom or a large floor loom and anything in between. However, Saori looms are especially designed with the ease and comfort of the weaver in mind. They can be folded and moved easily. They are simple 2 (or 4 heddle) looms. The weaver is able to control the heddles with their feet leaving hands free for creating their beautiful cloth.


Do I need to know about weaving to try Saori weaving?

Anyone can do Saori weaving, no weaving knowledge or experience is necessary. With Saori weaving there are no rules, and no restrictions. Mistakes aren’t possible but we call them “beauty with lack of intention”. It is very rewarding.


What is different about Saori woven cloth?

Saori cloth is unique. It can never be copied. The weaver has created the cloth as it evolved on the loom. Each colour, pattern and technique chosen for the certain effect it created. The weaver has followed their heart.


What can you do with your finished Saori cloth?

Enjoy it! Obvious answers to this are scarves, wraps, table runners, wall hangings and so on. It can be sewn into articles such as handbags, soft toys. Saori woven garments are very easy to make with little or no cutting or waste. Saori have published several books which include garment patterns.


 Who does Saori weaving?

SAORI weaving is happening worldwide in over 40 countries. Saori weaving is for everyone, regardless of physical or mental ability, age, or artistic aptitude. Hand-weavers, textile and fashion designers, artists, people with disabilities, art therapists, school students are all Saori weavers. In fact, anyone, anywhere, wanting to experience the Saori weaving philosophy.

What else is there to know about Saori weaving?

There are four philosophies that Saori weavers follow:

“Consider the differences between a machine and people”.

“Be bold and adventurous”.

“Look out through eyes that shine”.

“Inspire one another and everyone in a group”


The following quote from Misao Jo refers to the Saori philosophies.

“All flowers are beautiful, even though each individual flower is different in form and colour. Because of this difference, “all are good,” because everything has the same life. Life cannot be measured by a yardstick. It is individuality that makes everything meaningful and the uniqueness of each thread that creates that tapestry of life.” – Misao Jo, Founder of SAORI Weaving, Japan (www.saori.co.jp)