old Indigo-dyed felt blanket

Found somethging else which has me intrigued at that old ryokan. It’s an indigo-dye felt blanket. Not synthetic felt, but real, steam-shrunk wool felt. Dyed a deep indigo blue. I have never seen something similar before…..

OK, it’s completely moth-eaten. You can imagine how it was folded. I found it in an old storage tansu full of mosquito nets (kaya), way down on the bottom. I have heard b4 that indigo imbues the dyed cloth with some amount of bug protection. I guess wool is wool though, yummy to certain moths despite the indigo!

Why did I take it, you ask? Something in such condition could have no value, you probably think. But to me, not only is this worthwhile for studying the history of textiles and indigo dyeing here in Japan.

But also, I am presently working together with a man named Ritarou who specializes in sashiko, or the reinforcement of fabric using stitches. I have a feeling he will be very happy about my find. And that a winter vest or coat at least can be salvaged from even this bug eaten mess.

First I have to wash and air it , though….

More photos….There’s a tag in the corner. Can’t make out what’s written….

And the edge of the back side is interesting. Have a feeling this is a clue to how it’s made. Almost looks like three layers subsequently deposited one over the other, maybe on a large screen-like sieve….

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One Comment on “old Indigo-dyed felt blanket”

  1. shiborigirl says:

    LOVE it! every moth eaten bit…


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