An Indigo Dyed Boro Work Coat: Artful and Eccentric Mending

$395.00 USD

early twentieth century
shoulder to hem x sleeve tip to sleeve tip: 27 1/2" x 45", 70 cm x 114.5 cm

This faded, re-purposed, reconstructed, patched and mended garment is a work coat. It is made of indigo dyed cotton that has clearly been used hard, often and over quite a bit of time.

It is presented here as it would have been worn, not inside-out as many boro textiles are shown. The reason for this is that the mending and patching is just as interesting on the proper outside of the garment as it is on the inside.

On the outside of the jacket the mending is subtle; on the inside the patches are easy to see and in good number--the accompanying detail photos show this quite well.

The zones of light fading, especially those that can be seen on the back of the jacket, show that this coat was put together from another garment.

Such deconstructing and reconstructing of existing garments to create another garment was common in Japan. The fact that clothing in Japan was stitched using straight seams might be one of the reasons that this was in such common practice, but the real reason is that materials were precious and would be used until they were completely exhausted.

Please pore over the detail photos that accompany this post as the details are plentiful and because some are subtle it is helpful to have a close look.