A Length of Itajime Dyed Cotton: Carved Boards and Pressure

$85.00 USD

early twentieth century
25" x 11 1/2", 63.5 cm x 29 cm

This short length of gauzy, lightweight cotton is dyed in the itajime or kyoukech method, a resist dye technique which uses carved boards and applied pressure to resist the cloth in order to produce patterns. 

This fragment of cloth shows a repeat pattern of cherry blossoms and the traditional interlocking circle motif rendered in mirror image: this mirroring effect is due to the way that the cloth is positioned against the boards when clamping the cloth. 

In this length, just between the mirrored images, you can see a gap in the design--it is here the cloth has been folded as it is interleaved between the carved boards.

The reddish and pink colors of the cloth are likely the result of synthetic dyes, and this red tone was often used in early twentieth century kyoukechi or itajime dyed cottons, probably as itajime cloth was often dyed in botanical safflower dye which yields an orange/red color.

There is some overall light fading to the piece, very understandable for cloth of this age.


A Length of Itajime Dyed Cotton: Carved Boards and Pressure