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[Furisode] (Garment with long sleeves) Design of a plum tree, screens, and falcons on a white [chirimen] crepe ground


Title [Furisode] (Garment with long sleeves) Design of a plum tree, screens, and falcons on a white [chirimen] crepe ground
Date 2019
Production sengiren Co., Ltd.

Original Work

Designation Important Cultural Property
Collection Tokyo National Museum
Date Edo period, 18th century
Collection Ref. No. I-3869


Garments called furisode are distinguished by their long sleeves. This furisode has a pale yellow silk ground with designs of falcons perched on standing screens. A single magnificent plum tree twists sinuously across the surfaces of the screens. The screens and falcons are depicted using a starch-resist dyeing method called yuzen, which is unique to Japan. This technique allows for patterns to be laid out freely as though one were painting on a canvas. Take a look at the wood grain of the screens and the texture of the falcons' feathers, both of which are expressed with thin white lines. These lines were created by applying lines of starch paste onto the fabric. When the dye was applied, it only seeped into the sections that were not covered in the paste, leaving the lines white. In an extremely meticulous process, the dyes were applied with a brush for maximum control and to assure that they did not seep beyond the sections they were meant to color. Furthermore, the plum blossoms are embroidered in crimson and gold thread, while the purple patches on the ground were made with another dyeing technique called bakudan zome, or "bomb dyeing." These techniques combine with the bold composition and rich color to create a truly extravagant furisode garment.