News Letter

News Letter

Thursday, July 20, 2006

No 146

Dear Customers & Friends
Hello from Japan! This is Kimono Flea Market ICHIROYA's News Letter No.146.How are you? This is Yuka from Ichiroya. Some of you may be feeling the beginning of summer already,some of you may still have cold days. May is said to be a most pleasant month in Japan -- June isour rainy season and we have just heard Kyusyu area(southern part of Japan)has just entered the rainyseason and the seasonal rain front is coming up gradually.
Today, Ichiro and our older daughter both went an auction trip - and I am writing this newsletter.As Ichiro wrote in our website,Ichiro's mother was working as a kimono seamstress for over 50 years.My grandmother also was sewing kimono and teaching how to sew to younger people in her neighborhood.My grandmother's generation, it seemed all women had to be able to sew kimono for their family. At present time, there are many schools to teach how to sew kimono but in old times sewing kimono is a natural thing which women learn from their mothers without taking classes. In other words, women were born to get married, do all the household including making kimono for their families. So all women had the knowledge about kimono sewing for some extent, they could at least sew unlined kimonoprobably.Like my grandmother, there are these older people who could help younger people with sewing and dressing kimono- I remember my grandmother and her neighbors getting together in her small room, chatting and sewing. I was playing with my cousins and waited her little kimono class to end. I was always fascinated by her little sewing kit and haribako beside her.
These are the very similar things she was using:
She had this type of haribako and it was full of threads, pins, needles,thimbles and fabrics. Therewas a small hole to put the measuring stick too. The little drawers were full of these things and after she worked, everything could fit in this compact haribako like a magic. On the top you see the tray but behind that tray there is another space or drawer and to me,it was like a secret treasurebox. I think she had a low table and had a folding board where she placed kimono fabric and cut.She was always sitting on her knees,( she was a very small woman) and when sitting on the small zabuton(flat cushion) she was like a small doll. She had her kappougi apron(aprons which can cover sleeves too) and beside here, there was always a kukedai- it is in the left of the photo-it is a stand to holdthe third hand. It may be hard to see but there is a pinch tied to the stand. The other end of fabriccan be pinched to to pull the fabric and make it easier when kimono are sewn. The bottom of the standis tuckedunder zabuton, so the sewer is sitting on it and the stand can be stable. You can also see thescissors just like the ones we have in our J Artisan's website. is called nigiribasami-these are the kind which were always around and used for sewing.
Sometime ago, I visited my uncle's house to help them moving. They moved into a flat from a house theylived with their mother(my grand mother). There were two big tansu and some small things my grandmotherleft- there were the stand(with third hand). an old type iron-(they were warmed by hibachi, brazier)and her letters to her children and so on.We carried one of the tansu(chest) to my mother's house. The other bigger tansu had no place to go,unfortunately. The tansu had two parts and the bottom part was for kimono and the upper part has a lotof small drawers and the sliding door on the top part. Both my mother and my uncle told me that theyremember their grand mother used to give them sweets she was hiding behind the sliding door secretlyShe called her grandchildren and let them open their mouths and fed them like a parent bird.Their grandmother was very harsh to their mother but she seemed to have spoiled her grandchildren( my mother and my uncle). My mother is 71 years old now but she remembered about it so vividly.
Hisami who is in charge of our antique website wrote her first newsletter the other day. Both Ichiro andHisami do not care to drive long distance as long as there is an auction. In antique auctions, women arevery few and older people often tease her but she laughs away and concentrate very hard on the thingsin front of her- she sometimes have a nose of German shepherd and sniffs out the treasures from a bigpile of goods.She does not care getting up at dawn and looks blissful when she could find wonderful old goods. In our antique store, there are some haribako just like the one my grandmother had- we hope you enjoy seeingthe haribako which have been used in my grandmother's generation:
We will be adding charming antique items including a horse, misu screen(lovely size!)and antique ko-tansuat Antique Ichiroya and adding kimono, great catch of fish flag, fabrics AND 10 kimono bundle pack --20 charming kimono as a pack.We will be very happy if you have some time to check our new arrivals.
Domo arigato gozaimasu for reading our newsletter. We wish you a wonderful new week!

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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