A Two Panel Boro Length: Recycled Happi Coat
early to mid twentieth century
76" x 27", 193 cm x 68.5 cm
This is a two-panel indigo dyed cotton textile which was made from a recycled happi, a resist dyed and decorated festival coat.
The right hand panel of this cloth shows the decorative cloth taken from the happi as the geometric designs to be seen are stylized kanji or Chinese characters. Stylized kanji of this type are typical of a happi.
This right hand panel would have been one-half of the total bodice of the happi, front and back: the half-circle which is seen on the middle, right hand side would have appeared on the back of the wearer which gives you some orientation as to how this piece was once used.
Please note that the patch on the middle, right hand side of this two-panel piece is barely attached to the cloth so there is still a break in the cloth under the patch. This is easily stitched closed if you so chose.
This boro textile is composed of four separate pieces of cloth, all hand stitched together. About 18 patches stud the surface of this cloth, which in areas is almost thread bare, and which show a few small holes or loss to the surface.
A beautiful old boro textile.