I gathered lots of ideas and information prior to going to Tokyo in April 2012 and joining the Japanese Textile Study Tour. It seemed to be a good idea to get everything together in one place. I thought I would leave the page on my blog as it might be useful to you, dear reader, and it might be helpful if I have the chance to visit Japan again.
This is a website about Fujino, where the tour was based.
I like Lonely Planet guides. They have a lot of information and seem to be aimed at my kind of travel, not to expensive but not exactly backpacking. They have online guides and a forum.
Here's my reading list to date:
Alan MacFarlane - Japan Through the Looking Glass
Dr Junichi Saga - Memories of Silk and Straw
Amy Katoh - Blue and White Japan
Jill Liddell - The Story of the Kimono
Norio Yamanaka - The Book of the Kimono
Alexander McKay - Scottish Samurai - The life of Thomas Blake Glover
Places I visited in 2012 and would recommend:
Blue and White
Hama rikyu onshi-teien
Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden
Tokyo Metropolitan Government Office, 45th floor observation decks
Places I didn't manage to visit in 2012 but would still like to see:
Park Hyatt Deli
Tokyo National Museum
I watched the progress of the cherry blossoms in 2012 as my visit was when they would be at their peak
It would also be wonderful to visit in Autumn and see the glorious colours of the acers: