News Letter

News Letter

Thursday, July 20, 2006

No 106

Dear Customers & Friends
Hello from Japan! This is Kimono Flea Market ICHIROYA'S News Letter No.106.Our vintage kimono dealers always dream very valuable antique fabrics would happen to be included in very cheap bunch of kimono. Antique maru obi sometimes unpicked in the side of end stitches. It is often because previous dealers thought that its lining might be valuable fabrics, and if so the lining could be sold way expensive than obi. Sometimes sellers may be selling very valuable piece without knowing its real value at the shrine market. So anyway we must be very careful about what we are seeing. Recently at an auction I saw a dealer got this kind of fluke. At that time not so rare items were not offered, and so every bidders seemed to lost their sharpness. Ordinarily cotton fabrics bunch were offered, and a bidder suddenly bid high price and he got them. Every one was astonished by his price, because it seemed to be way high for ordinary cotton fabrics.My mentor Fujimura was the auctioneer at that time, and he also didn't noticed, and closed the bid. And before he passed the fabrics, he gave a close look to one of them, and said. 'Damn it all! This is Tanba-fu!' That dealer took the fabrics from Fujimura san, and said 'Yes, it may be!'.All dealers got awake, and were thrown into a commotion. Some said it was Tanba-fu, and the rest said it was not.But I heard from him later that they were genuine Tanba-fu from Meiji priod(1868-1912), and he already sold two of them at nearly 1000 USD for each.All the day my mentor grieved over his mistake with offering items.
Tanba-fu is one of the lost antique fabrics. Here is the page of Tanba-fu, although it is Japanese only. was woven in Tanaba district ( near Kyoto ), until Meiji period 30's (1868-1912). It was woven with hand spun thick cotton threads, which were dyed ai, brwon and green with plants dyestuff . And silk threads are blended in the weft threads, which was also hand spun from the spoiled cocoons. This district was the product center of silk, and people could easily got spoiled theads. This silk threads were spun thickly and used without dyeing. Patterns are limited to check or stripe. Its pattern and texture is tasteful and sophisticated. Ending Meiji period, Tanbafu became not to be produced, becase other competitive cotton fabrics drived it out. Ending Taisho period(1912-1925), Souetsu Yanagi rediscovered the beauty of Tanbafu, and collected them. People in Tanba district resuscitated the Tanbafu in Showa 29 (1955 ), and also today Tanbafu is woven by new weavers.
Today's Tanbafu is not cheap, becase of its elaborate and skilled handwork. But Tanbafu in Meiji priod(1868-1912) was moderate price textile, and used as casual wears or bedclothes. So it often mixed with other ordinary cotton fabrics like that auctions, and sometimes it was used as obi lining.
We are not so eager to have such flukes, but it was a very impressive case, and we thought it may be an interesting story to know the antique fabric business. If you happen to find brown/blue/Green check(or stripe) fabric pieces in antique obi, you must check the weft, and check if silk is included or not!
I caused you so much worry about my backache. Now I rarely feel ache, and can walk as usual. I still avoid carrying heavy packages, but it must be completely healed in several days.Tomorrow I will attend a big auction in Kyoto although on Sunday. Now kimono market is slow, because the summer sales season end, and too early for autumn business. At that auction almost all major dealers come, and the mistake like above case will not happen. But we expected to find lots of rare items will be offered.
Thank you very much for reading to the end.
We are adding kimono, furisode, Nagoya obi and bolts-we hope you have some time to check our new arrivals.We wish you a lovely weekend and a happy new week. domo domo from Japan.
Ichiro & Yuka WadaKimono Flea Market "ICHIROYA"
e-mail: info@ichiroya.comaddress: Asia-shoji Bldg.301 1841-1 Nishi 1 chome Wakamatsu cho Tondabayashi city Osaka 584-0025 JAPANTEL&FAX ****( international number ) - 81-721-23-5446


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