Yoriko Oki was born and grew up in Tokyo, Japan, surrounded by rich history of textiles. She learned how to crochet when she was in kindergarten, and self-taught knitting and embroidery from her mother’s old magazines when she was in elementary school. Although Yoriko loved the fiber arts from when she was small, her path to where she is now was not straightforward. She was originally trained and worked as architect in Tokyo. After hitting a glass ceiling early in her career, she moved to Canada and earned master’s degree in architecture. However, without a luck of finding a job as architect, she worked as a freelance translator. A few years later, she attended Helen Lefeaux School of Fashion Design in Vancouver and graduated with the Best Overall Achievement Award and a renewed appreciation toward textiles. After the graduation, Yoriko worked at the school as an instructor for 4 years.
During these 4 years, Yoriko took many textile related courses such as dyeing, printing, and weaving. In 2004, Yoriko joined Fibre Art Studio On Granville Island, a shared textile studio/gallery shop in Vancouver, as a weaver. She started dyeing yarns for her own weaving projects, and started offering them to other fibre art lovers as her yarns soon caught their eyes. In 2014, after her husband suddenly became critically ill, Yoriko decided to make her fiber art business her full-time job. She opened an online shop on Etsy in 2016 offering hand-dyed yarn. In 2019, she participated in Vogue Knitting Live Launch Pad program, which led to many other opportunities.
Yoriko always describe herself as a “forever work in progress.” She is looking forward to finding out what unrolls in front of her eyes next!