Antique Japanese Textile - A Sashiko Stitched Furoshiki Wrapping Cloth
This is a wonderful antique furoshiki wrapping cloth with thick white sashiko stitched corners over a deep botanical indigo ground.
Sashiko stitching, using a running stitch, is used as a method of reinforcing or repairing fabric, as a way of adding decorative elements, or to achieve both of these purposes simultaneously as we see here. An item such as this one may often be presented to a new bride and groom as part of their wedding trousseau.
The upper left corner, as seen in image one, shows the interlocking circle motif shippo tsunagi. The upper and lower left corners are stylized chrysanthemum. The lower right corner shows a repeating hemp leaf pattern asanoha along with a Japanese character キ, or ki. This word has many meanings but could roughly translate to life atmosphere or energy.
Each side of the wrapping cloth has been hemmed by hand, with two sides further reinforced with double stitching. The reverse of the wrapping cloth has a repair and reinforcement of two squares of indigo cotton. A few small holes, the size of a pea or smaller, remain but do not detract.
An excellent example of a sashiko furoshiki with traditional Japanese atmosphere.
Dimensions: 38.5 x 39" inches; 98 x 99 centimeters
Early twentieth century