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Zero waste Kimono Pattern, by Franki Campbell

Zero waste Kimono Pattern, by Franki Campbell

Today I’d like to show you my Zero Waste Kimono pattern, a very simple design that you can make using strips of narrow fabrics.

The Kimono is an ancient garment, from Japan and with a collection of very specific traditions it is a fascinating example of early ‘zero waste’ clothing.

Kimono zero Waste drawing

The garment is constructed using strips of narrow fabric, traditionally 14 inches/ 36cm wide. An entire bolt or ‘tan’ (12.5 yards / 11.4metres) is used to make the Kimono, so nothing is wasted or cut off.

The pattern:

Zero Waste Kimono Pattern

The beauty of the pattern, is that… there isn’t one! (Well, not a physical pattern anyway). Use the design above to work out your pieces – a bit of common sense is needed here, but remember – no waste!  The length and width of both the body and sleeve are very flexible. I would recommend starting with the width of the kimono to fit you (you can be quite liberal here). Then the length. The sleeves and trimming will fit around what’s left over.

Using the Kimono as a starting point you can play around with some really simple shapes. In most modern tops we use shaped sleeves, but how about using rectangles and creating a loose fitting top based on the Kimono?

The best Fabrics to make your Zero Waste Kimono are Silk and Lightweight Cotton:

KImono fabrics zero waste

If you would like to know more about the fascinating history behind kimonos, please click here.

Visit Franki’s website:

Or contact her: 07956077588




  • […] have no excuses not to waste anything! Hopefully you’ve already had a go with her brilliant kimono and collar and bow-tie patterns (seriously- what an amazing present for someone out of lonely […]

  • I have been on a long, circular search for this pattern, which seems to have disappeared. Is it available anywhere please?
    Thank you

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