A Double Sided Length of Old Katazome: Peonies and Butterflies
late nineteenth, early twentieth century
47" x 12 1/2", 119.25 cm x 31.5 cm
This is a charming length of old, indigo dyed katazome cloth that shows a pattern of butterflies frolicking among peonies.
The quality of katazome is a bit blurred. This is due to the cloth being stencil resist dyed on both sides and in so doing, the registration of the application of rice paste on each side did not match, so the finished result is a pattern that is blurry or fuzzy.
But the pattern is rich. Three different types of elegant butterflies are playing in a field of stylized peonies; one of the butterflies is rendered in a faux shibori style, which is charming.
The length is composed of two pieces which are hand stitched together. There is one mending patch the size of a postage stamp which is hand stitched to the surface.
Some overall wear can be seen on this length, which is normal for a cloth that is a hundred years old.