Japanese Version

Global Textile Nomads in Amami Oshima by Nancy Craft

Steve here: Last May, I accompanied textile artist Nancy Craft on a pre-tour preparation trip to Amami Oshima.  Nancy, who is also a long time Travel Planner at Esprit Travel, went on to lead the following tour in November. This past November, I led an Esprit Travel textile study tour of Amami Oshima, a sub-tropical island located between Kyushu and Okinawa. We planned the tour especially for the Global Textile Nomads, a group...

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Hiroshi Saito at Santa Fe Weaving Gallery

A guest posting by Jill Heppenheimer Hiroshi Saito is not just a talented textile artist, but a delightful and engaging friend, colleague and seeker. We had occasion to host a trunk show with Hiroshi-san in late September, 2010. We first invited him to come to Santa Fe about 3 or 4 years ago, and found him a bit reluctant. I know, now, that that was in part because a) he is in demand from other galleries, he does everything himself...

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Jin Nanami

Jin Nanami design duo of Okura Naomi and Yamamoto Shizuko use brilliantly woven textile treasures from Kyoto’s Nishijin weaving district to create their original line of high-fashion, one-of-a-kind handbags. The tradition behind Japanese textiles goes back 1300 years. The quality, intricacy of design and beauty of this particular kind of Japanese fabric, woven to be used as obi (wide belt for kimono), is legendary throughout the...

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Wool Muslin Support Group helps bring a versatile and comfortable textile back to the racks.

For about a year, I have been participating in the quarterly meetings of a grass roots  group that is unofficially working to save some of Japan’s extraordinary textiles, on the verge of becoming extinct.   Started by yuzen-art Saito Hiroshi-san, the group is made up of about 25 people including a magazine publisher, dyers, designers, clothing makers, professors of textile arts and students.   Kyoto’s always innovative yet...

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My neighbor, Ando Yasushi-san–Kimono artist

Ando Yasushi-san is my neighbor and friend.  We sometimes go for coffee at a salon-like cafe, where people from various backgrounds come to chat. Ando-san’s hobby is country western line dancing.  He is a renowned yuzen kimono painter in Kyoto.  Yuzen painting is typically a craft that is cooperatively done by a combination of about 15 different specialists, including a designer, an outline painter, a person who applies resist...

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Never discard a piece cloth that is at least large enough to wrap 3 beans

Yesterday, I visited my friend Kawasaki Kei-san, proprietor of Kyoto's upper Teramachi textile gallery,  Gallery Kei.  The gallery had just finished an exhibition of 100 year-old offertory bags.  The old adage about saving patches of cloth large enough to wrap 3 beans came from a time when all textiles were precious.  Kei-san explained, “People in pre-industrial Japan would patch together various bits of cloth in long rolls....

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