A Beautifully Mended Tsunobukuro: Horn Bag

$595.00 USD

early to mid twentieth century
49" x 15 1/2", 80 cm x 37 cm 

This is a tsunobukuro, or horn bag, so called because of its distinctive appearance: this bag is fashioned from one length of cloth hand sewn on the bias, the result of this construction are two "horns" which appear at the top of the bag.

Tsunobukuro are a kind of collector's piece and are well-regarded by those who collect Japanese folk textiles.

Because the cloth of a tsunobukuro is set on a bias this bag is stretchy and it can accommodate a large volume of rice, grain or beans which it was intended to store.

This marvelously good-sized and beautifully repaired tsunobukuro is hand stitched cotton cloth that has been repeatedly dyed in green persimmon tannin or kaki shibu: this colors the bag a deep brown tone and acts to strengthens the cotton fibers, giving the cotton a scratchy feel.

Here the bag is shown inside-out in order to reveal the ten or so charming patches and the many small eddies of mending stitches that can be seen on both sides of the bag.

For the serious collector of  old Japanese of rural cloth and utilitarian, functional fabrics, this bag is a welcome addition to your collection both for its condition and its type: it is a very good example of an old, repaired horn bag.