A Resist Dyed Furoshiki: Bold Diagonal Design

$85.00 USD

early to mid twentieth century
29" x 29 3/4", 73.5 cm x 75.5 cm

This is a furoshiki or a traditional wrapping, storing or hauling cloth that is still very much in use today.

This one is unusual because it is made from one length of cloth; its width is generous and is not the typical 13"/33 cm Japanese loom width which means either the cotton cloth used to make this was imported or it was power loomed.

The tsutsugaki dyed design is one we see often on furoshiki. It is split down the center on a zigzag diagonal with half the design in a kind of light salmon color and the other half in a warm blue. The line which separates the two halves is sprouting bamboo leaves.

Seen on the top, left is the congregation of stylized images showing pine, bamboo and plum which is the traditional Japanese triad of auspicious symbols called shochikubai. 

Shochikubai is a classic, auspicious pattern and it is often used for cloth to be included in a bridal trousseau.  The plum is the first bloom to burst forth from the winter's ice and is symbol of strength, the bamboo bends but does not break so it is a symbol of resilience, and the pine, of course conveys a wish for longevity.  Also, pine needles fall in pairs, and thus they are a motif symbolizing conjugal bliss.

On the lower right corner we see a family crest, that of stylized ivy. 

In good, used condition with a small hole or two, one of which is shown on the last of the detail photos here.