19th Century Safflower Dyed Lining Silks: Natural Dyes
late nineteenth century
orange piece: 53" x 13"
two purple and green pieces, each, approximately: 12 3/4" x 4 1/2", 32.25 cm x 11.5 cm
These three beautifully colored silk pieces are taken from a yose juban, a pieced undergarment which was a typical undergarment worn by women in old Japan.
The silks are all extremely lightweight and thin; there is very little body to them and they literally flutter in the breeze. But they are all wonderfully dyed in natural dyes and the figured fragments are hand resist dyed.
The long, orange, tone-on-tone piece is dyed in safflower or benibana as it is known in Japan. The purple fragment is most likely dyed in gromwell root and shows the traditional hemp leaf or asa no ha pattern, and the green fragment is most likely dyed in indigo which is over dyed in a yellow dye.
A vibrantly colored length of old silk, this is a wonderful textile study piece from old Japan.