Tag Archives: boro

Today’s textile- an antique komebukuro

Back in June 2012, I posted about this wonderful komebukuro.  Here I copy the relevant part of the post in order to list this in the shop.

This particular one appears to be quite old and with many areas repaired.  It employs various homespun cotton and hemp fabrics and the rope is handmade from hemp or other bast fibers. It is also quite large- the bottom measures 11″x11″ and each of the 4 sides about 15″(H) x 12″ .  One side (the inside?) is more interesting than the outside-you can better see the patchwork. I would guess this one to be from the Meiji era (1868-1912). I appropriately found it at a temple sale. 

This piece has been displayed at many of my workshops:

inside full view-1

more inside detail

edge detail and rope

bag bottom inside

outside view 2

another outside view

If cloth could speak!  One can only imagine the past life of this bag, but from all the mending and variety of scraps used in its making, one can guess that it was made in the Japanese spirit of “mottainai” which conveys regret over wasting something useful. Poor families saved all cloth, which was then made and remade into useful objects many times over. I love this piece as a reminder of that notion- that we can be more thoughtful and find ways to make what we have last longer, and remain purposeful.
These types of “rice bags” were used for errands, carrying rice and perhaps other daily necessities, and sometimes to take offerings to local temples.

This one I came across at a Tokyo area temple sale in 2012, before I knew much about boro and Japanese folk textiles.  I had yet to find and visit the Amuse Boro Museum in Asakusa. When I saw it it just spoke to me and I have admired it first hand since then. When I first brought it home it was quite dirty and I did give it light vacuuming,  a gentle soak and hand wash to clear the fabric of the accumulated dirt. It seemed to appreciate it. I usually display it with more patched side out. Added to the shop here.

 

If a picture is worth a thousand words…

Thought I’d do a little (or maybe not so little) post on whats been going on behind the scenes here lately.  Lot’s of various things- like workshops, studio work, a little flu (all gone now!), RAIN!, and working on the Silk Study Tour to Japan for 2019.

I received the Newsletter from the Fresno FiberArts Guild where I gave a workshop recently. What a great guild-very energized and involved in the community. It was wonderful to see the many resources  and skills available within the membership.  Plus, they were a delightful group to work with!

In the studio, ribbon making continues…

as well as more playing around with silk organza…

The flu came and went -thankfully, not too bad. Hoping the same for you out there! So many have had it in one form or another.
We did get rain this month-so big YAY on that!  Rain barrels full and the garden is refreshed. Snowpack increasing…
There are a number of milkweed plants out back with caterpillars on them but one in particular has about 15 large caterpillars about ready to form crysalis’. I never get tired of watching them.

All the other critters here are well…

And finally, I sent out the information packs, itinerary, and registration forms for the upcoming Silk Study Tour to Japan 2019 last week to those early birds who had signed up via the Constant Contact newsletter. Already 1/3 of the spots are filled.  If you need info, you can access the newsletter here. Here are some highlights from last year:

Next post I will list upcoming workshops both at the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles and my November workshops at the Houston Quilt Festival.

Hope you are well and wondering daily!

 

 

weaving across colors and then some

Some things take a long time to figure out.  I wondered about this quite some time ago while participating in one of Jude’s classes.  Then I set it aside. Recently while working on something new, I realized exactly what this was for.  And now I’m wondering again. Getting into the Spirit of things.
woven moon

Holding on to Less

Yes, this is a continuing theme here.

Please bear with me as it becomes less. And I am thanking everyone for joining in at Free(r).  Soon, I will add links to the shibori lesson videos that have been unlisted on Youtube and buried in the shibori pdf lessons 1-5.  Also, have patience as the pdf’s download.  Today I downloaded them as a test and some were quicker than others (some are many pages and have lots of photos).  Over time, I may redo each one as they seem so primitive to me now.  But a good record of Before. Thinking on that.

Before, this was something else. Something useful, and before that, even something.  Before will become something. (A new category even).

sakiori obi becoming ...

sakiori obi becoming …

I feel we are really in a transitional place here. I am gaining something from the momentum of it all.

opening it up and seeing the beginning of the cloth

opening it up and seeing the beginning of the cloth

It was something before it was torn into strips for weaving.  With my loop I can see that there are some kasuri fabrics in this piece.  i wonder about its previous life.

inside it is becoming too

inside it is becoming too

I have made a number of these over time. It started because I wanted to hold on to less.  To carry less around.  To feel Freer!  I am making a few new ones for the show-and a new one for me. These inside pockets can hold some cards, some cash.  The middle holds my phone, or not.

inside view

inside view

-and now it has become something else.  From kimono scraps, to a woven obi, to a bag to hold less. From one place (Japan) to another-here. I wonder how much time has elapsed from this cloth’s first beginnings?  Something to think about.  What about cloth being made today?

i love the changes of cloth the weaver made as she wove.

i love the changes of cloth the weaver made as she wove.

Very sturdy and beautiful at the same time. The casing I sewed at the top allowed me to slip in a spring hinge closure (purchased). I hand stitched the interior pockets (made of obishin- more on that later) so as not to see stitches from the front side.  The edges too are hand stitched preserving the beauty of the weavers selvedge.

One more…made of obishin-the heavy stiff cotton interior fabric of an obi…indigo dyed.  This one with more machine stitching as was necessary to overcast the edges and keep them from undoing. A handmade boro stitched  button closure and some hand twined indigo cording. Also has a spring hinge top closure. This one is larger than the other.

Less really can become more.

ha! the “new” boro

Speaking of trends…without any real understanding of the thought behind it.  But let’s be cool, let’s be hip. Let’s make believe boro!

made in China, Indonesia, or Vietnam apparently.  Remember when these were made in the US and didn’t cost $100+?

Japanese vintage boro huh?

After having been to the Amuse Boro Museum last month this sort of thing really leaves me cold. If you go there and feel the energy of those pieces, of the passage of time, the hardships, the heart and everything else they engender, I doubt you would be making a joke of it all by making faux shoes like these.  These shoes seem to be the anti-boro.

Seems sacrilegious to me.  Boro my ass.