We are pleased to present a series of Usuhanasome garments that are made where heaven and earth meet.
COSMIC WONDER “Days of light” garments in hemp, silk, and organic cotton are dyed with light mud and light indigo. The mud dyeing is done by Kanai Kogei in Amami Oshima, Kagoshima Prefecture, and the indigo dyeing is done by Konya Jin in Mie Prefecture. The colors produced by this wonderful technique first appeared in ancient times and appear again today.
Light-mud dyeing is done with mud and dyestuffs boiled from the Fukugi tree, a tall evergreen tree native to Amami and points south. By contrast, the typical mud dyeing process uses dye from the wheel plum tree. The light mud is found in the iron-rich mud fields in the ancient strata of Amami Oshima Island that date back 1.5 million years. The dyeing process is done in cycles: Fukugi tree dyeing, mud dyeing in the mud field, rinsing in the river upstream, again Fukugi dyeing, again mud dyeing in the mud field, and water bleaching… Depending on the condition of the cloth to be dyed, the process is adjusted or the number of cycles is changed. Mud dyeing requires the blessings of Amami Oshima’s natural habitat. These sensitive techniques have been cultivated over many generations.
Light-indigo dyeing is done in a vessel with a diluted indigo dye and repeated over and again. The process is more delicate than ordinary indigo dyeing as it requires much bleaching and dyeing. The work of Konya Jin, a light-indigo dyer in Mie Prefecture, starts with making sukumo, the indigo dye. After growing the indigo naturally, making the sukumo and making preparations throughout the year, the indigo dye is finally ready. Konya Jin uses the Shou-ai dyeing technique.
Please take a look at the beautiful and subtly colored Usuhanasome garments that reflect both the blessings of nature and the work of human hands.
Center for COSMIC WONDER
June 5 − June 20, 2021
Open 12pm – 6pm
5-18-10 Minami-aoyama, Minato-ku, Tokyo
T. +81 (0)3 5774 6866