Kyoto Hikizome Dye Workshop Tour — Takaokaya Cushions and Futons

Hikizome (lit. ‘pull dye’) is a traditional Japanese dye technique in which fabric is stretched tight, water is applied and then dye is applied by hand with a brush. Painting the dye into the wet fabric causes it to blur. This technique can also be known as bokashizame, (lit. ‘blur dye’).

Horizontally, the fabric is stretched and pulled tight between the two ends of the dye workshop. This is about 15 meters in length. The fabric width is between 50 and 100 cm. Width-wise it is spread tight with narrow bamboo sticks called ’shinshi’ in Japanese.

 Kyoto Hikizome Dye Workshop Tour -- Takaokya Cushions and Futons

Fourth Generation Proprietor and Hikizome Dye Artisan, Nishimura-san

 

At Takaokaya, we collaborate with a number of traditional Kyoto dye artisans including Nishimura-san who specializes in Hikizome exclusively. Nishimura-san is the 4th generation proprietor of his century old family business. Currently the workshop is located in the Muromachi neighborhood which is the traditional dyeing district of Kyoto. However, Nishimura-san’s ancestors started out further up north in the Ogawa area (lit ‘little stream’). This area was famed for it’s fresh, clean water, therefore the Schools of Japanese Tea Ceremony — Wikipedia article — Urasenke, Omotosenke and Mushakojisenke can still be found here.

Surely Nishimura-san’s ancestors were drawn to this neighborhood due to the quality, fresh flowing water which is needed in large quantity for these dyeing arts.

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Takaokaya’s Ideal ‘Kyo-miyage’ Kyoto Souvenir — Part 1: The Idea

A custom-made authentic Kyoto souvenir that can be a part of your everyday life after you return home. Recall your Kyoto travel memories while relaxing with our handcrafted cushions made of vintage kimono fabric that you chose!

Copenhagen based Danish-Japanese fashion designer Mika Ishii explores Kyoto’s Toji Temple antiques market and selects some vintage kimono fabric that Takaokaya makes Mika’s unique souvenir collection of zabuton cushions with.

Takaokaya’s Ideal ‘Kyo-miyage' Kyoto Souvenir — Part 1: The Idea

Exploring the Market: Copenhagen based Danish-Japanese fashion designer Mika Ishii

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Takaokaya + Izutsu Textiles Collaboration: Funzoe Brocade Ojami Zabuton Cushion Collection

Ojami cushions made with the world’s first camouflage textile pattern!

Takaokaya Ojami Cushion Collection 2015: Izutsu Textiles Preview

Funzoe Brocade Ojami Zabuton Cushion Collection

 

Takaokaya and Izutsu Textiles collaborated to create a new collection that we call Funzoe Brocade Ojami Cushion Collection. Funzoe is a traditional and historic Japanese priest robe pattern. Buddhist Master, Kukai is known to have worn this pattern as his heavily patched and repaired robe some 1,200 years ago! This collection was unveiled in Paris at Maison et Objet, 2015.

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Takaokaya + Pagong Collaboration: Kyo-Yuzen Dye Ojami Zabuton Cushion Collection

Ojami cushions made with the treasured dye technique of the 1,200 year old imperial capital — Kyo-Yuzen!

 

Takaokaya + Pagong Collaboration: Kyo-Yuzen Dye Ojami Zabuton Cushion Collection

Kyo-Yuzen Dye Ojami Zabuton Cushion Collection

 

Takaokaya and Pagong collaborated to create a new collection that we call Kyo-Yuzen Dye Ojami Zabuton Cushion Collection. Kyo-Yuzen is a dyeing technique that was invented in Kyoto by Miyazaki Yuzen-sai around 1700. Miyazaki’s technique transformed yuzen dyeing into something that could create the full spectrum of artistic expression on fabric — from the thinnest, sharpest lines to blurred motifs à la brush and ink and watercolour painting — and everything in between. Period literature says that once Kyo-Yuzen was invented, 20 other dyeing techniques went extinct. The technique spread throughout the land, but it was in Kyoto that it was developed to the pinnacle of perfection over the following centuries. This collection was unveiled in Paris at Maison et Objet, 2015.

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Nishijin-ori Silk Ojami Cushion Collection — Traditional Kyoto Weaving Artisan Workshop Visit

Today the International Business Development Team (Nanako and Michael) here at Takaokaya visited our weaving partner in Nishijin, Kyoto’s historic weaving district. This traditional workshop weaves the unique silk for our one-of-a-kind Nishijin Silk Ojami Cushion Collection, featured in this recent ‘Kutsurogi’ blog article.

Kyoto Takaokaya Nishijin Silk Ojami Collection Weaving Artisan Workshop Visit: Jacquard Loom

Nishijin Jacquard Loom Weaving Takaokaya’s Signature ‘Rokusho Patina Green’ Silk Textile

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Product Development: A New Collection Based on Traditional Japanese Brocade Textiles

It looks like camouflage to us — but it isn’t! What is ‘funzoe’?

While we are just in the prototyping stage, we just wanted to let you know about a new collection that we are developing with Izutsu, a Kyoto textile house with 310 years of experience in the finest Japanese brocades — used for Buddhist and Shinto priest robes and temple and shrine decorations. We have have been doing prototyping with Izutsu since April and have worked on getting the fabric the appropriate lightness and weave tightness for our handcrafted cushions. Izutsu used their rare, custom-made loom for weaving priest robe fabric for summer.

Product Development: A New Collection Based on Traditional Japanese Brocade Textiles

‘Funzoe’ Pattern Monotone Ojami Cushion

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