A Fanciful Knotted Festival Apron: Cotton Yarn
ca. late nineteenth, early twentieth century
28" x 15", 71 cm x 38 cm
This intricately knotted, indigo dyed cotton apron is fancy with its fine pattern and its flouncy fringed hem.
Although the actual construction of the apron is of open work knotting, the piece itself is backed with white cotton cloth, probably to lend stability to the garment.
Even though aprons were a staple of all households and businesses all over Japan, this particular piece seems to be more festive than utilitarian.
The lattice quality of the knotting, the fringe, etc., seem to indicate this garment was ceremonial and not used for housework. Some horse trappings used to decorate horses for matsuri or festivals are extremely similar to this apron in construction and in color.
This piece is sturdy; it is not at all fragile since it is backed with cotton--and it is unusual, beautiful and festive.
A one-of-a-kind beauty.