about kurume kasuri/The origin of “Kurume-gasuri

The origin of “Kurume-kasuri”

The origin of “Kurume-gasuriThe origin of “Kurume-gasuriThe origin of “Kurume-gasuri

International Kasuri & Kurume-kasuri

“Ikatto” – an international word which represents “kasuri”

The word of “kasuri” is originated from a Malay: “bind” or “tie.”
The feature of kasuri-textile is a technique to twine and dye vertical threads and horizontal ones together so as to weave up a design. We can see it all over the world.
The technique is conveyed pervasively from India, the originated place, to Persia and South Europe, from China and Southeast Asia to Ryukyu.

The representative types of kasuri made in Japan are Hingo-kasuri in Hiroshima, Iyo-kasuri in Ehime, and Kurume-kasuri in Fukuoka.
Kurume-kasuri wasn’t conveyed from the continent, but born from the daily life – people worked their loom and wove clothes for their family, which has developed as kasuri with their creativities.

From Silk to Cotton Textile

Cotton – a material adjusted to our life

The textile is confortable for our skin and easy to do the laundry, so it is used for daily clothes as a handy fabric.
Compared to silk textiles since the ancient in Japan, it was since the middle of the Edo-era that people got cotton seeds and began to make textile from cotton.
Until then, cotton, the material of the textile, was not grown in Japan, but it was an expensive import that only rich people could get those days.

Cotton farming spread especially in cities. In Kyushu, it was popular in the Old Hita-gun, Oita.
The farming area has spread to Chikugo-district along the biggest stream, the Chikugo.
People continued to grow cotton and indigo on the fertile ground that the Chikugo has cherished. Also, they kept weaving a cotton fabric with stripe or no design as a second job while they were not farming.

A Girl’s Curiosity – a Clue of the Origin of Kasuri

The elaborate textile, a feature of Kurume-kasuri – created by a girl.
The girl is Inoue Den, a prominent interweaver and a daughter of a farming family, was twelve or thirteen years old.
One day, she noticed dots which appeared on her cloth. Then, she released the threads of the cloth and examined the structure of the fabric.
As a result of her consideration on the dots, she found a way to dye threads after twining and protecting them from coloring.
This is the important procedure, “Kukuri,” (twining threads) to make kasuri.
It is a technique maintained until today all over the world to weave up designs of kasuri.

The textile, which Den, twining and dyeing threads, wove for the first time, is a design called “Hakumonsanran,” spreading white dots over a piece of fabric.
It was called “Yukihuri” or “Arareori,” identified with the snow, and was very popular among people.
Although the kasuri Den devised was born accidentally, later, a lot of people worked on it and created the ways to weave up other elaborate designs and machines to produce them efficiently.
Nowadays, Kurume-kasuri has evolved as a representative fabric of Fukuoka and Japan.