NIPPON Kichi - 日本吉

Results 1 - 8 of 18 articles     >>     >|  


二越縮緬 Futakoshi-chirimen Futakoshi Chirimen Crepe

Jp En

Futakoshi chirimen, also called ancient chirimen, is one of traditional fabrics that have been handed down in Japan for years.
Chirimen is white crepe cloth produced in the Tango region of Kyoto and the Nagahama region of Shiga. Most kimonos are made with this white chirimen which is then dyed to create beautiful kimono colors.
Chirimen is made by first scouring silkworm thread and then twisting about 18 to 27 of these threads into one thread.
There are two kinds of chirimen depending on the method of weaving. For Hitokoshi chirimen, one thread is twisted from the right and the next one from left, and these are alternated in the weaving process.   Futakoshi chirimen uses two threads instead of one and it has a more uneven surface than Hitokoshi.
Most of the chirimen made from the Edo period to the Meiji period was futakoshi chirimen.  After the end of the Meiji period, however, the weaving of chirimen started to wane and it is hardly made now.
Futakoshi chirimen is soft and airy and it has good ventilation. It is also light weight and has elasticity. It is a silk fabric that keeps the look and feel of authentic chirimen.
[+ADDRESS] Add this to Favorites


秩父銘仙 Chichibu-meisen Chichibu Meisen

Jp En

Chichibu Meisen is the silk fabric made from Chichibu silk that has been manufactured since ancient time in Chichibu City, Saitama Prefecture.
The origin of Chichibu Meisen dates back as early as the Emperor Sujin era (BC149~BC29) when Chichibuhiko-no-mikoto taught the technology of sericulture and the weaving to local people.
The fabric uses yarns taken from silkworm cocoons called Tama-mayu as well as Kuzu-mayu, debris of the cocoons. This thick yarn is woven horizontally, which makes the fabric durable. Sericulturists used to make the fabric for their own working clothes.
Chichibu Meisen uses a simple weave form called Hiraori (literally, flat weave) which has no difference between front and reverse side, thus, allowing people to turn the clothes inside-out to renovate the dress when the color wears out. With its durability and utility, the fabric became popular among common people and developed further.
Samurai warriors also valued the fabric and helped its development. Over the decades, Chichibu Meisen was improved and the technology advanced while it kept its tradition. It reached its period of peak popularity during Meiji era and the beginning of Showa era.
Chichibu Meisen, which won the hearts of many people in Meiji and Taisho era with its rich design style, still draws attention and is woven with great care while preserving its long history.
[+ADDRESS] Add this to Favorites


首里の織物 Syuri-no-orimono The Shuri Textile

Jp En

The Shuri textile is produced using traditional dyeing and weaving techniques developed over five hundred years in the Ryukyu Dynasty capital of Shuri and its surrounding areas. It had made a unique development while incorporating influences of China and Southeastern Asian cultures. With its historical and cultural values highly esteemed, it is the representative fabric of Okinawa today.

During the period of Ryukyu Kingdom, these fabrics were mainly worn by the nobility and warrior classes and the main weavers were wives and daughters of warriors, to whom the weaving fabrics were a part of the jobs that they were proud of.

For Ryukyu textiles, Ryukyu indigo and other plant dyes are used and weaving is done by handlooms called “Jihata” and “Takahata” (tall handloom) using a throwing shuttle. There are seven Shuri textile techniques handed down to the present; Shuri Hanaori, Roton Ori, Hanakura Ori, Muru-totchiri, Tejima, Nihgashii Basho-fu and Hanaori Tekin. For dyeing techniques handed down in one locality, the Shuri fabrics have some unique features in their variety and sophisticated quality.
[+ADDRESS] Add this to Favorites


群馬 桐生織 Gunma Kiryuu-ori Kiryu Textiles

Jp En

Kiryu textile is the traditional handicraft handed down in Kiryu City, Gunma Prefecture. It is said that Kiryu textiles dates back to around A.D. 800, when Princess Shirataki, who had served at the Imperial Court, came to Kiryu after she married into the Yamada family and taught the art of sericulture and weaving to the people of the village. Kiryu textiles became well known throughout the country after Nitta Yoshisada raised an army at the end of the Kamakura period (1192-1333) and Tokugawa Ieyasu used a white silk flag produced in Kiryu at the Battle of Sekigahara in 1600.

In the middle of the 18th century, they invited two weavers of Nishijin to learn the most innovative techniques of the time. Then in the first half of the 19th century with patronage from the Shogunate, it became possible to produce high quality textiles. Being called “Nishijin in the west, Kiryu in the east,” the town of Kiryu was flourished as the production center of high quality textiles, which became one of the key industries of the country throughout the periods from Meiji to early Showa.

With unpopularity of kimono, the textile industry in Kiryu is also in a predicament now, but Kiryu is making its way to develop new products by introducing the latest technology.
[+ADDRESS] Add this to Favorites

伊勢崎銘仙 Isezaki-meisen Isezaki Ikat

Jp En

Sericulture had been actively practiced in Isesaki since the ancient times and it is said that the making of silk textile in this area started in the periods before Christ. However, it was not until the latter half of the 17th century that a production center for ikat, or popularly called “meisen,” became established. In the Edo period (1603-1868), closely-woven cloth was called “me-sen (a thousand eyes),” from which the word “meisen” was created.

When it came onto the market in Tokyo in the Meiji period (1868-1912), it gained the popularity and the name of Isezaki Meisen was known throughout Japan. Then in the Showa period (1926-1989), too, Isezaki Meisen industry reached its second peak. At the present time, although a burst of popularity has calmed down, several hundred craftsmen continue making this traditional textile.

Isezaki ikat is characterized by its dyeing techniques, which include “itajime-gasuri (board dyeing),” “kukuri-gasuri (tying the printed part before being dyed)” and “nasen dyeing (employing pattern paper and dyeing with brushes and spatulas).” After being dyed, the ikat threads are woven into a wide variety of patterns ranging from the very simple to those of a complex nature. In whichever case, Isezaki ikat all makes the best use of the qualities of silk. These handmade ikat cloths are loved by people even today because they are strong but reasonable in price.
[+ADDRESS] Add this to Favorites


宮平初子(人間国宝) Miyahira Hatsuko Miyahira Hatsuko (Living National Treasure)

Jp En

Ms. Miyahara was born in Shuri in Naha City, Okinawa Prefecture in 1922. Hiving great interest and knowledge in the Shuri textile since very young, she entered the Okinawa Kenritsu Joshi Kogei Gakko (Okinawa Prefectural Women’s School of Arts and Crafts), where she learned dyeing. She met Muneyoshi Yanagi in the year of her graduation and went to Tokyo, where she studied weaving and dyeing with plant stuff under his guidance. After two years, she returned to Naha and taught at her former school. However, as the World War II turned Okinawa into burnt ground, the Shuri textile was virtually in danger of extinction.

The Shuri textile is the products of traditional dyeing and weaving techniques developed and handed down over five hundred years in the Shuri area in Naha. During the period of Ryukyu Kingdom, these fabrics were mainly worn by the nobility and warrior classes and the main weavers were wives and daughters of warriors.

Ms. Miyahara devoted herself to reviving the Shuri fabric traditions and organizing the craftspeople of the fabric. In 1972, when Okinawa was returned to Japan, she organized the Naha Traditional Textiles Association and contributed to the revitalization and succession of the Shuri textile. She was designated as a holder of an Important Intangible Cultural Property (known as a Living National Treasure) in 1998. Love for her homeland and the hope for the world peace are woven into the fabric woven by Ms. Miyahara.
[+ADDRESS] Add this to Favorites


玉那覇有公(人間国宝) Tamanaha Yuukou Yuko Tamanaha (Living National Treasure)

Jp En

Yuko Tamanaha was born in 1936 in Ishigaki, Okinawa Prefecture. In 1996, he was designated as a Living National Treasure for his 'bingata' dyeing work.

Bingata is a splendid dyeing craft that symbolises the culture of the Ryukyu dynasty. Its color reflects the colors of Okinawan nature. Professional artists compete with each other to succeed and pursue these traditional skills. And Bingata is a dyeing craft that is unique to Okinawa.

Tamanaha studied dyeing under Eiki Shiroma, the 14th in the Shiroma family and one of the three head families of Bingata. When he was 34, Tamanaha began to send his work to exhibitions and received many prizes for excellence.

His career is brilliant but his work is a steady repetition of tasks. The handiwork requires finesse and endurance and considerable effort leads to beautiful work.

Tamanaha is now engaged in making bingata with his family at his studio: the Tamanaha Bingata Institute in the village of Yomitan.
[+ADDRESS] Add this to Favorites

福田喜重(人間国宝) Fukuda Kiju Kiju Fukuda (Living National Treasure)

Jp En

Kiju Fukuda was born in 1932 in Kyoto. In 1997, he was designated as a Living National Treasure, becoming the first person to receive this distinction for embroidery.

Fukuda extensively studied traditional embroidery techniques under his father Kizaburo, a leading expert in embroidery. After hard training, he succeeded to the family business. His work covers not just embroidery, but the selection and dyeing of the cloth, and its imprinting with gold or silver leaf. He has created subtle modern expressions that are unique to embroidery, and in doing so, developed his own style.

Most of his works achieve beauty by combining dyeing and imprinting with gold or silver leaf. As he says, embroidery is half-solid, threads swell on the surface and give off colorful lights depending on the angle you view them.

In 1999, he received the purple medal of honor from the Emperor.
[+ADDRESS] Add this to Favorites

Results 1 - 8 of 18 articles     >>     >|  
NIPPON Kichi - 日本吉 - 日本語に切り替える NIPPON Kichi - 日本吉 - to english

"Nippon-kichi" leads you to places, people and things that reveal a certain Japanese aesthetic.

Articles: 5445
Keywords shuffle
Keywords Search
View history

Linkclub NewsLetter