Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Hi From Japan

As you can tell from the heading above, I am now in Japan - in fact have been here for almost a 
week now. We spent the first two days at the Yokohama Quilt Show which was pretty amazing.
The stalls were as usual incredible and we all had big spend ups on fabric, kimono silks, threads and more. The quilts were amazing - mostly quite modern and in strong colours.

One of the other highlights of our stay in Tokyo was our trip to the Boro Museum. Boro is described as “rags and tatters of the far North of Japan” that have been made clothing and bedding. These amazing textile pieces were made in very poor communities in Aomori Prefecture.

These pieces have been patched and mended with whatever scraps of fabric were
available  and held together with stitching.

Chuzaburo Tanaka put this collection together by walking through the farming and fishing villages of the area in the 1960s collecting and documenting these pieces. They are now housed in the Amuse Museum in Asakusa where we can admire, photograph and 
even touch these pieces – what a treat.

The large piece behind me is long narrow scraps of cotton woven through hemp 
fibres to create a new textile.

We saw more of this style at Tokyo's Blue and White Shop. They had an amazing window display of Boro made recently from old indigo and scrap fabric, so fed our new addiction nicely.

Don't you just love the intense stitching on this piece.

The next post will come from Kyoto as we headed south on the Shinkansen (bullet train) 
after visiting the Blue and White Shop.


  1. Fabulous boromono. Do you have an address for the Amuse Museum? I love boromono and have quite a few old ones, from Tohoku, and I'm wondering now if these are also from Aomori. They are a constant inspiration!

  2. Hi there Susan - I think the visit to the Boro Museum has been the highlight of this trip so far - it was just so amazing.
    The museum is just outside the East Gate (Nitenmon) of the Sensoji Temple is Asakusa. They have a website www.amusemuseum.com and have a stunning book "Boro - Rags and Tatters From Far North Japan" published by Aspect Crop. in 2008.

    Check out the Blue and White Sop's website for information on their visit to Tohoku. www.blueandwhitetokyo.com

    You are so lucky to own some pieces of Boro.