An Overdyed, Recycled Nobori Bata: Zanshi Top
early to mid twentieth century
69" x 13", 175 cm x 33 cm
This length of cotton was taken from a larger piece, from a futon cover.
What is interesting about it is that it is hand stitched from two pieces, the top piece is a fragment of zanshi ori, or cloth woven from left over yarns, and the bottom is a recycled piece of a nobori bata, a decorative banner which was displayed outside on certain holidays.
The nobori bata fragment seems to be hand woven of hand spun cotton. It shows an image of tsutsugaki dyed rushes standing in gently swirling water. As can be seen by the accompanying detail photographs, the condition of this piece of cotton is feeble: it is threadbare in certain places, has a few stains and shows surface abrasions and snags in other areas, not at all unusual for length of cloth that was hoisted and flown outdoors for years, and which was then used for bedding.
The image is dark and subtle. In contrast to the zanshi ori top, this is quite an interesting piece, desirable for the tsutsugaki dyed nobori bata fragment which comprises the greater part of the piece.