A Length of Edo Komon Cotton: Minuscule Pattern

$85.00 USD

id nineteenth century
54 1/2" x 13", 138.5 cm x 33 cm

This is a generous length of the marvelous, nineteenth century katazome dyed cotton cloth known as Edo komon, or what can be translated as Edo era all-over patterned cloth.

Edo komon, is a small figured, all-over patterned cloth that was popular in the late Edo period (1603-1868).  

During this time period the central government enforced laws on the population which regulated almost all aspects of life, dress included.  

Most people in Edo era Japan were told by the government to dress in subtle, dark colors and small patterns; because of this, elaborate, very small patterned cloth was developed and then became popular, the reason being was that one could still wear figured clothing while not breaking any of the sumptuary laws that were laid down. 

Countless tiny-figured designs were developed during this period and for this reason we know that the cloth which was used to create this garment dates to the 19th century.  

Interestingly this length is as clearly resist dyed on the front as it is on the back. Of course there is some fading and surface scuffing from almost two centuries of wear, however this remains a marvelous tribute the ingenuity and the extreme skill of the Japanese katazome dyeing and stencil making artisans. 

This length truly shows a tour de force of katazome dyeing.



A Length of Edo Komon Cotton: Minuscule Pattern