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A Magnificently Beautiful 18th Century Ramie Boro: Formal Kimono

Written on May 1, 2012

This fragile, delicate and beautiful boro cloth is hand stitched from elegant, hand decorated 18th century kimono pieces.  The kimono, which once belonged to a woman of means, is made from indigo dyed, hand-plied ramie cloth.The ramie is extremely finely woven from hair-thin yarns.  It is almost silky in the hand.  As a kimono it was probably unlined.The decorations are resisted; the hand applied color which would have been very clear when first made is now faded away, leaving barely a trace.The cloth is soft and delicate–it flutters even in the most subtle breeze.

And on these photos you can see that the cloth is translucent.Most likely this cloth was fashioned as a futon cover; its small size suggests it was made for a child, but this would have been a pampered child who would have needed very good manners.

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2 Comments

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  1. Comment by helen salo:

    My family can’t understand how I find the beauty in all this. Wonderrful piece.

    May 2, 2012 @ 11:48 am

  2. Comment by Lis:

    What a beautiful piece, such stories it could tell. Helen Salo your comment made me smile, I had a discussion with a friend today who believes boro=rags beyond use and only fit for the bin!!

    May 2, 2012 @ 3:15 pm