A Remarkable Two Process Indigo Han Juban: Shibori over Katazome
late nineteenth, early twentieth century
28" x 26", 71 cm x 66 cm
This subtle beauty is a han juban, or a half under-kimono, which is hand stitched of indigo cotton which is dyed in a fascinating and complex manner.
The body of the han juban is rich in indigo dye, and for good reason.
The base cotton was first dyed in the katazome method, whereby hand cut stencils are used to guide rice paste onto the cloth, the rice paste creating a barrier to the cloth when it is immersed in a dye bath. The katazome pattern is checkerboard, with alternating solid and horizontally-striped squares.
Over this base a second dyeing technique was applied, a vertical-oriented, pleated shibori, which gives the garment a beautiful, wood-bark like texture--and a rich, dark indigo color.
The collar is a piece of asagi or pale blue miura shibori in an asymmetrical placement: really lovely.
This han juban, although well over a hundred years old, shows little wear. The cotton is strong and the dye is dark and vibrant. There are no visible stains or tears to the cotton cloth.
A really wonderful old garment from Japan, and one that shows a remarkably good technique, both in its katazome and shibori dyeing.