A Length of Benibana Dyed Hemp: Strong Fading, Lovely Colors
ca. late nineteenth century
26" x 12 3/4", 66 cm x 32.5 cm
This lovely, faded, bright pink, benibana (safflower) dyed length of hemp cloth was shown on our blog at the beginning of the month as a way to herald spring.
Benibana dye is very light fugitive and it fades easily: this is the reason for the large, amorphous area of undyed pink: the dye simply vanished due to light exposure and to wear.
Still, this softened, lost color is a lovely contrast to the deeper tones of fuchsia shown on this cloth, the fuchsia area still being quite vivid and rich in dye.
This cloth is for someone very interested in old Japanese cloth that shows the warmth from human wear, or for someone with a keen eye for faded beauty.