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A Rustic Okkochizome Shibori Kimono: Heavy Striped Cotton

September 5, 2013

KyushuShibori01Since I acquired this kimono a few years ago I’ve loved it.  It’s a dip-dyed or okkochizome shibori garment which is made of heavy, hand loomed, striped cotton and it was made in Kyushu.

KyushuShibori01aThe indigo is deep, velvety and warm in color.  The shibori is stitched, and the images are raw, bold and rustic–most of their meanings I am unable to decipher.

KyushuShibori01bWhat’s interesting is that the cotton is of such a heavy weight which is unusual for this type of garment; the weight is almost like a very light weight cotton canvas.

KyushuShibori01cI love that the images are so large in relation to the garment.  For example, the flower shown above measures 11 1/2″ in diameter.

KyushuShibori01dThe kimono itself measures 53″ x 50″ or 134.5 cm x 127 cm.  It was probably made in the second quarter of the twentieth century.

 

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A Six Panel Itajime Shibori Futonji: Sekka and Kikko

October 27, 2012

Many of you are familiar with sekka itajime shibori, or clamp resist dyed shibori which ends up looking something like a flower, in this case, sekka or a snowflower.  And as this shibori technique was commonly used for diapers, many of you are used to seeing this type of shibori done small, like this.As sekka shibori is a fairly straightforward and relatively easy-to-do shibori technique, it was used a great deal in old Japan, especially in the 20th century.  Here we see it covering a marvelously large area as 6 standard-sized loom widths are machine stitched together to create a futon cover (which is now opened, as shown here).  But sekka shibori was also used for undergarments and yukata.In addition to the snowflower motif, you’ll also see an all-over configuration of hexagons.  This could be read as kikko or tortoiseshell, and, as you can imagine, it is a traditional motif that conveys wishes for a long life.This is a huge piece.  It measures 89″ x 72″ or 226 cm x 183 cm and it’s in quite good condition.  Every so often there’s a match head-sized hole, but the cotton is bright white and the indigo is a rich sapphire blue.  It was probably made in the 1950s or 60s.

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