A Reversible Zanshi ori Kotatsugake: Flowered Back

$336.00 USD

**reduced from $420.00**
mid twentieth century
59" x 58", 150 cm x 147.5 cm

This fully reversible cotton textile is large and is stitched from a combination of  cotton cloth.  The proper front is made of hand woven zanshi cotton, a cloth woven from leftover yarn which results in the variegated effect of the weft field.  The back is assembled from a beautiful combination of power loomed cottons, patched in contrasting floral prints.  

It is a handsome example of Japanese traditional re-purposing of existing material, and, as this piece dates to around the mid-20th century, it is interesting to note that re-purposing of cloth was a practice that continued until fairly recently.

The large, cloth made from two layers was used  as a cover for a kotatsu, a traditional, heated table that would be covered in blankets under which members of a family would gather to share warmth.  Electric kotatsugake, or kotatsu covers, are still used to this day in many Japanese homes.

This kotatsugake shows two distinct sides, as mentioned above: the sublte front side woven from leftover yarns and patched with great, contrasting cottons, and the back side which is a blue and white floral pattern that is patched with commercially produced floral print cottons in a barely noticeable on the busy ground--however once you notice this, it is a wildly alluring combination.

The condition of this kotatsugake is good; it shows wear and some light fading which is not surprising, as well as some small tears and some surface abrasion, not unusual for a utilitarian cloth that was hand made from recycled cottons.  

A really beautiful cloth from old Japan.