A Stunning Silk Komebukuro: Edo Komon Pieces
ca. late nineteenth, early twentieth century
10 1/2" x 10" x 10", 26.5 cm x 25.5 cm x 25.5 cm
This kind of piece-constructed, drawstring bag is often referred to as a komebukuro. Komebukuro are bags that were used to bring token offerings of uncooked rice or beans to a temple or shrine festival, the piecing and patching often being thought-out and planned, for festive effect.
This komebukuro is special. First, it is made of 15 pieces of old 19th century silks and it show four different patterns of Edo komon silks which are small figured, overall patterns made popular during the early to mid 19th century.
What is also marvelous about this bag is what cannot be seen: the lining is made from a very old, probably Edo period (1603-1868) tenugui or hand woven cotton hand towel. Just fantastic.
As is quite evident, there are about ten applied patches to the bag which give it even more pizzazz than it already has; the drawstring is the same one that came with the bag when we acquired it, so it is fair to assume it is somehow original to the bag.