Thursday, 22 November 2012

Shibori Class Kyoto Japan

Today we went to a Shibori Class at the Kyoto Shibori Craft Centre.

Shibori is a dyeing technique where you running stitch your design onto your piece 
of fabric – ours was silk. Then the stitched threads are pulled up tightly and secured. 
The areas that formed the flowers were gathered up tightly and then we bound up the
‘bubble’ that was created. The stems were just pulled up tightly. This technique is 
called Umbrella Roll or Ita-Shime Shibori.

We used a free standing frame that held our knotted end securely while we pulled each
thread really tight.

Then it was off to the wash and dye process. Wash first to get the marked design out of the fabric and then into the dye pot – ours were in for just five minutes.

Next rinse and dry. Then gently release the threads to reveal your creation. 
Jane and I dyed ours blue and Susie chose a lovely orange.

These are sticks for moving the fabric around n the dye pot.

I think the hardest part was sitting on the floor and concentrating!!!!!

This dyeing technique is the oldest in Japan and sadly the master crafts-people are getting on in years now and there are few younger people following them through. It is such time consuming work that it is no longer financially viable – it takes eighteen months to make one kimono that is completely shibori dyed.  It seems that before long it will be just a museum piece. Once again we have huge respect for the old fabrics and techniques that come out of Japan.
You can find more information on their website:


  1. Memories. I still have my gorgeous shibori piece that I purchased there and hemmed to make a coffee table cover. It looks fabulous, I bet you really enjoyed making your own shibori. Actually thinking about it I also bought a scarf and a bag there. Still admired and enjoyed.
    Enjoy the rest of your trip and I look forward to seeing you soon.

  2. You looked quite comfortable sitting on the floor Robyn!!!!. Enjoy the rest of your time there.