A Fragment of Handspun Cotton Shibori: Asamai

$50.00 USD

late nineteenth century
36" x 9 1/4", 91.5 cm x 23.5 cm

This length of cloth is said to be a type of shibori done in Akita prefecture in the north eastern region of Japan: it is said to be from an area called Asamai.

The cloth is almost gauzy in weight and is hand woven from luscious hand spun cotton yarns. The shape of the cloth is a bit distended from its former life: it seems this relatively lightweight cloth was probably taken from a furoshiki or a traditional wrapping cloth. The furoshiki must have been reserved for fairly special occasions as this type of shibori is a desirable kind that was no doubt expensive to buy.

The design is composed of diagonal bands of the interlocking circle motif. The field around these bands is miura shibori. Apparently the two tone effect of the interlocking circles was achieved by stitching a shaped piece of paper inside a fold and in doing this that area would resist some dye and create a mid-range tone.

There is a small, patch in the center, top portion of the cloth and there is are holes as well, pictured. This is not one full width of cloth, it was cut up one side to create a narrow strip.

The indigo dye is still rich in tone and the beauty--and relative rarity--of this kind of shibori is very much present.