A Marvelous and Large Heavily Sashiko Stitched Kotatsu Cover: Four Panels
ca. mid twentieth century
47 1/2" x 46", 120.5 cm x 117 cm
This really beautiful cloth is composed of four panels of finely striped cotton that were once kimono: they were hand stitched together and the entire area was sashiko stitched using white, cotton thread, first in a grid pattern and then diagonals. Just fantastic.
This was likely one cover that would have been used on top of a kotatsu, a kind of heated table that was covered in blankets, the purpose of which was for the family to gather around it for warmth in winter.
This cotton, sashiko stitched textile is not heavy with layers. As it is sewn from two layers it is surprisingly lightweight, although the stitched-together layers are very durable due to the profusion of hand applied sashiko stitching throughout.
The proper "front" of the piece, the side where the unfinished seams cannot be seen, is one color, a kind of warm, grey-brown. The proper back, which shows the selvedge edges of the panels that are used to stitch this cloth, has two colors, a yellowish/brown/slate grey stripe and a color that is similar to that, but about 6 tones darker. The effect is really handsome. Note the small area of loss to one of the finished edges of the cloth and some surface abrasion to the recycled kimono cotton.
This is a wonderful and extravagantly sashiko stitched large textile.