A Soft Cotton Sake Bottle Bag: Nice Mending
mid twentieth century
30" x 12 1/2", 76 cm x 31.5 cm
This good sized bag is made of very nice, supple, thick cotton which has been commercially woven. The bag itself is machine stitched.
It has also been dipped in kaki shibu, or green persimmon tannin, a traditional, Japanese dyestuff that helps strengthen the woven fibers of cloth and also provides a kind of waterproofing effect as well. You can see that the dipping into the kaki shibu bath has left an uneven trace as folds of the cloth can be seen where the dye did not take.
This cloth bag, said to be from Shimane prefecture and it was used to sheath large bottles of sake. There are stenciled kanji on the surface of the bag.
As well, there are three lovely mendings which have applied to the bag, which can be seen on the accompanying detail photographs. Note as well a tie which would have been secured around the neck of the sake bottle--and a splotch of discoloration on the proper front of the bag.
A curious and lovely thing, and one that has many uses for the home.