Boston x Kyoto Tenugui Kamon Design

Kamon Design x Shirushi Zome

I designed Kamon (family crest) for Boston Kimono festival printed by the Japanese craftsman, Mr. Sugishita. The Kamon design was used for tenugui.
The tenugui celebrates the friendship between Kyoto and Boston.

I used Cherry blossoms, a symbol of Japan, and the mayflower, a symbol of Massachusetts, in a single intertwined kamon, or familial emblem.



What is Shirushi Zome?

Shirushi-zome is the technique the traditional dyeing technique to dye characters, crests, marks, etc. peculiar to textiles.
Going back to the Heian period, the family crest was originally marked by the aristocrats at that time to mark the ox cart, and it is attached to show one's attributes as a mark to identify the enemy and ally in the battlefield, and to establish the individuals. It is said that the beginning of Shirushi is the dyeing of "marks" on flags and banners.

In Edo era, most cotton textiles are depended on self-production at home. And a specialized supplier did for the dyeing of a thread and the cloth. Therefore there was “the dyer” who was a specialized supplier of the dyeing in a town and the village by all means. In the big city, a lot of dye houses gathered in the place where the use of the water and the procurement of dyeing materials were easy. In the town, there are name called “Konnyacho” or “a dyer town”, it seems with the trace from old city. When kimono culture faded out with the change of the times, many dyehouses changed a scale and a business style.

Dyeing craftsmen dye a variety of patterns, from large patterns such as coats of arms to detailed patterns such as family crests. Unlike kimono dyeing, it dyes a wide area with one color, so bleeding and unevenness are likely to occur, and it is said that it is difficult to dye evenly.




Thank you❤️