An Deconstructed Silk Kimono: Pieces from a Oshima Tsumugi Kimono
early to mid twentieth century
as shown: 6 1/2" x 14 3/4", 16.5 cm x 37.5 cm
Oshima tsumugi or Oshima kasuri silk is some of the finest and most complex kasuri cloth in all Japan. Its minute and complex kasuri dyed patterns are the result of masterful dyeing and weaving, the actual plotting of the designs is probably more complicated than can ever be explained and has to do with many different techniques and was, surprisingly, greatly influenced by the importation of graph paper to Japan from France in the early 20th century.
This "bolt" of lustrous Oshima silk is hand stitched from long pieces; presumably this was a kimono that was deconstructed and reconstructed as a bolt: the silk drapes beautifully in the hand and the length measures over 10 yards or 9 meters. After the 10th yard or the 9th meter, the piecing of the cloth is narrower, with a center seam, which indicates the collar part of a kimono.
The pattern is of very tiny checks which can easily be seen in the accompanying detail photographs.
A very good length of precious silk from Japan.