Friday, October 26, 2012

Edo Period Oshie

This first image is of one of my favourite pieces in my collection.  I used it in one of my first blog posts and  it's the image on the home page of my website. It's a late Edo period oshie ( 押絵 lit. 'push picture')  padded applique and probably dates from around the middle of the 19th century.  It has the  subtlety and delicacy that is characteristic of so many Edo period textiles, and which  is rarely seen in later oshie.

Oshie developed as a craft in the  second half of Edo period ( 1600-1868) as a pastime for  wealthy  women  who had time on their hands. They also had access to silk remnants to re-use.  Some oshie were displayed on small sticks which could be inserted into display stands. The ones here have been mounted on paper.  Most of them have been pasted into the centre of the sheet with the side pieces folding over to close:
 We bought these oshie together and they  seem to have been made by the same person.
I love the attitude and the flirtatious sideways look of the woman in this final one.


Wednesday, October 17, 2012

In Store - Kimono Silks

Kimono silk off the roll is definitely the most popular item in the shop.  It's being used for quilting, dressmaking, dolls, hats, bags, table runners, wall hangings, cushions, scarves, and much more.  Here's a selection of our silks which shows the  range of designs we have. These silks all date from mid-late 20th century and are the standard kimono  width  (approximately 35cm).  They're all currently available in our online shop:



Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Seams and Patches

I've had some customers recently asking about traditional patching techniques so I thought I would show this old  handmade sample book from my collection.  It seems to have been a high school project and has the name Kimiko Noda and her class number (2-2) very beautifully written by brush on the cover  and the title Tsugikata Tsugikata  -  'How to join(fabric). How to patch.' It's about 9cm x 14cm. Each sample piece has been stitched into the book with a single pine needle motif that allows you to see the reverse as well

Some of the seams might be a little difficult to see in the photos. The first is a 'folded back to one side join/seam'. This is a plain seam that has then been stitched down to one side  with tiny stitches showing on the right side of the fabric (there are probably English names for these techniques - I'm sorry I don't know them!).  The pictures show the front and then the reverse:
Next is a 'split seam' which is a regular seam with both sides stitched down:
The third seam is a 'kake-tsugi' which has simply been overstitched.
The next kasane-tsugi ('lie on top seam') has one piece flat on top of the other (rather than being stitched right sides together) and held with a running stitch:

Next is a  'face to face seam'  which is like a tight herringbone variation:

The word for patch is also tsugi  but with a different kanji character 繼to the tsugi which means seam 接. If you're interested in kanji you might note that the tsugi used to label the patch samples is the old unmodified version of the same character on the cover of the book 継 . The first  patch is simply 'hole patch (circle)' :
And 'hole patch (square)':
Next is a 'key tear patch',  (This is the same shape as the large keys which were poked through a hole in a door or gate to open the latch from the inside.)
The next is a 'sashi-tsugi' or stitched patch. This is the same 'sashi' as in sashiko'. This is a very common kind of darning  that we often find on old kimono and juban:
I'm not sure why this final one is called 'coloured paper patch'. It's a slightly more decorative version of the  previous one: