A One-Page Shimacho: One Double Sided Page of Stripe Samples
early to mid twentieth century
8" x 6" x 1/4", 20.25 cm x 15.25 cm x 1 cm
14 leaves; 1 with swatches
Shimacho means, literally, "stripe album." The small, cotton swatches contained within it are usually striped cotton, or some variation on striped cotton.
A shimacho is said to be an album of home weaving that a bride takes from her family home when she's married, leaves her family and begins her life in the home of her new husband's family. Most likely this is in part true, however it is more likely that a shimacho has a broader beginning and a less prosaic life. It is not unthinkable that a sliver of a neighbor's weaving found its way into a shimacho, or some such thing.
This one contains lovely pieces of both commercial and hand loomed cotton cloth which date from the late nineteenth century through the middle of the twentieth. The swatches are glued to both sides of a single leaf of paper, however the album contains fourteen leaves in all, thirteen of them blank. Interesting to note that the pages are written on and were turned inside-out before making the book. Some wormholes and staining.
A wonderful thing to own.