A Beautifully Sashiko Stitched Furoshiki: Hand Spun Cotton
late nineteenth century
25" x 26", 63.5 cm x 66 cm
This is a little jewel of sorts.
It is an indigo dyed cotton furoshiki or wrapping cloth that is beautifully sashiko stitched on its four corners. A central design, the tachibana or a wild citrus fruit which is often seen as a design motif, usually in family crests of kamon, is stitched on an angle.
One of the essential attributes of this little beauty, aside from its wonderful stitching, is that it is hand woven from hand spun cotton yarns. This quality is always looked for in good, old Japanese folk textiles and it adds a tremendous amount to the integrity of any textile. The indigo dyed is nicely faded to a slightly soft, aged blue.
As can be seen in the accompanying photos, the four corners of the cloth have sustained some damage over time in the form of tears and loss.
But the corner areas are very rich in stitching: The upper right and the lower left corner are stitched in the interlocking circles of shippo tsunagi motif. The opposing corners show a variation on the wave motif.
A fantastically good little textile. One with good age and a lot of soul.