A Densely Patched Boro Han Juban: Layers of Indigo Mending

$495.00 USD

early twentieth century
19" x 47", 48.25 cm x 119.5 cm

ThisĀ indigo dyed boro jacket is a han juban or a half under kimono--and for this type of garment it is shorter than most others of its kind.

It is a marvel of patching, repair and reinforcement through mending and is something of a little jewel of old repaired Japanese garments.

The han juban is shown here inside-out to reveal its intense hand application of patching. Pore over the attached detail photos to see the concentrated layering of old cloth and to appreciate how the surface of the garment has become a rich field of texture and color due to insistent patching.

The base cloth is interesting and is significant to consider.

It is a fairly light weight double kasuri called "mosquito" kasuri because the pattern is a dense repeat of very small white crosses. In order to get the resist dyed yarns to intersect perfectly as they do here is a considerable feat of dyeing and weaving skill and therefore this so-called ka-gasuri is something to be noticed as it is out of the ordinary and was probably costly to purchase.

The garment no doubt has had several lives before it assumed this shape. More than likely it started off as a longer, more complete garment, probably a kimono. One can imagine that over time the kimono started to wear out and become torn and damaged: it is perfectly reasonable to assume that this kimono would have been cut and shortened until it assumed its current form. One can also imagine that whatever cloth was cut to create this under garment was saved and re-used.

This is a truly fascinating and very attractive old boro jacket: it is full of visual information and it speaks volumes on Japanese mending and repair.

Very recommended.