April 24, 2009
Today’s post features a large, very layered and very eccentrically sashiko stitched, boro furoshiki, or wrapping cloth which is flanked by a collection of densely stitched zokin or dustrags made from re-used, re-purposed cloth.
The furoshiki measures 68″ x 60″/ 173 cm x 152.5 cm and it is an elegant mess of scraps of cotton cloth that are layered in areas and arranged with no regard for symmetry: the entire wrapping cloth is pierced by a heavy network of sashiko stitching which travels strange paths in odd directions, often pooling up in tight, eddies of thread.
Which is front and which is back? Each side is a similarly interesting exploration of re-using cloth scraps and employing stitching as a means to strengthen and reinforce re-purposed materials. Even though this furoshiki contains scraps of cloth from the late 19th century, most of the cloth is from the 20th, and my guess is that this was made in the 1930s or 40s.
The images of two zokin, below, show a tough little work horse of a cloth: each is a concentrated pad made of layers of recycled coton which has been thoroughly and completely stitched.
As with the furoshiki shown here, I’ll be offering the zokin for sale on my website in the next week or so.