NIPPON Kichi - 日本吉

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伊賀くみひも Iga-kumihimo Iga Kumihimo Braid

Jp En

Iga kumihimo is a traditional braiding handicraft from the city of Iga in Mie Prefecture. Kumihimo braid uses silk threads for the main thread combined with gold and silver threads. It is woven in a traditional manner using kumidai braiding stands.

The origins of Iga kumihimo date back beyond the Nara period. In the Heian period, elaborate braids began to be used for Buddhist altar objects and ritual articles. When samurai became a prevalent class, kumihimo braiding was used on weaponry. Even after the Meiji period, the techniques of traditional kumihimo were still familiar in the world of Japanese kimono, being used on obi sashes, as well as haori and hakama from the Edo period.

The beautifully dyed silk threads intermingle with other threads, creating kumihimo braid's distinctive texture and quality. The special feature of kumihimo is its way of beautifully combining various elements. In 1976, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry designated Iga kumihimo as a Traditional Craft of Japan.
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京房ひも・撚ひも Kyofusahimo・Yorihimo Kyofusa Braids・Yori Braids

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Kyofusahimo/yorihimo are exquisitely braided ropes and strings decorated with clusters of ornaments. These magnificent objects date back to the Heian period, and are considered to be a traditional handicraft of Kyoto.

These crafts originated in the Heian period. The kyofusahimo and yorihimo developed because the nobles and lords of Japan wanted some flamboyant and luxurious accessories for their interior furnishings and belongings.

During the Kamakura period, samurais used these braids as kimono cords for their armor and katanas. During the Muromachi period, when the tea ceremony became popular, these braids were used to decorate equipment used during the ceremonies. In the Edo period, when many different temples were built in Kyoto, stores that sold Buddhist altar fittings decorated with these braids and stores that specialized in braids, prospered.

As braiding designs and techniques developed, there were many social changes that led to the kyofusahimo and yorihimo becoming more of a common commodity, than a luxury one.

Up to this day, the kyofusahimo and the yorihimo are beloved by the people of Japan because of their many uses in a range of applications, from everyday decoration and accessories, to traditional events, such as tea ceremonies and commemorations.
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