Yorke Antique Textiles

A collection of antique and vintage textiles from around the world

General Japanese


Abaca: A 'hard' fibre obtained from the leaf sheaths of the wild banana plant.

Acanthus: Foliage design based on the Mediterranean plant Acanthus spinosus, widely used in European arts.

Alpaca: A warm fine woolen cloth, made from the hair of the alpaca goat. The fiber is small but strong, elastic, lustrous and silky. The alpaca goat is common to Chile and Peru.


Ai (indigo): Blue dye; derived from the indigo plant; various shades achieved by repeated immersions interspersed with periods of drying (allows dye to oxidize and darken); medicinal properties are ascribed to both plant and dye; commonly believed, cloth dyed in indigo will resist insect damage [Attr.].

Aigi: A full-length woman's kosode worn under a uchikake. Usually patterned with kanoko shibori.

Aizome: Indigo dying [Attr.].

Ajiro: Fabric woven with shaved bamboo or cypress trees.

Akane: dye color derived from madder root [Rubia cordifolia]; produces a deep, 'lipstick' red tint [trad.]

Akigusa or akikusa: (autumn flowers and grasses”): classic motif consisting of various selections of flowers and autumn grasses; traditionally includes hagi (bush clover), kiku (chrysanthemum), susuki (pampas grass), kikyo (Chinese bellflower), but others may be added; frequently used to decorate lacquer, textiles, and porcelain [AoJ,v.1,pg.90,91+137]

Aobana: Pale blue tracing liquid extracted from a particular variety of the tsuyukusa plant (Commelina communis) that washes off easily in water and is used for drawing designs on to the fabric in Yuzen dyeing and tie-dyeing.

Arare (hailstone): pattern of small, evenly spaced squares, arranged in checker board fashion; alternately called ishi-datami when used on court fabrics; [AoJ,v.1,pg.137]

Asa: is term to describe bast fibers, meaning a fiber taken from plants, and also including ramie, hemp, jute and linen. Asa fibers were lightly spun or twisted into threads that were easy to weave, dye and pattern.

Asanoha (hemp leaf): motif based upon the leaf of the hemp plant; arranged as a repeated, six-pointed star pattern; frequently used on female clothing (especially during the Taisho era) [trad.]

Ashide: originally a loose, flowing style of calligraphy used in landscapes and resembling scenic elements such as rocks, reeds, water, trees, and such; now, any style of design that employs calligraphy in this fashion [AoJ,v.1,pg.137]

Atozome: refers to fabric that is decorated after weaving. In post-dyeing, fabrics are dyed after they are woven. Yuzen dyeing, komon (small pattern dyeing) and shiborizome (tie-dyeing) are examples of atozome.

Atsuita: stiff compound weave that combines a twill ground with plain weave patterns in multi-colored threads; presently used for No' costumes exclusively [AoJ,v.1,pg.137]

Aya: any solid color, twill-woven fabric; often used in conjunction with more elaborate textured weaves [AoJ,v.1,pg.137]

Aya-ori: twill weave. The weft yarn crosses over or under three or more warp yarns in twill weaves. The point where the weft and warp cross is called the soshikiten, or structure point. In a twill weave the structure point floats successively to create a diagonal pattern on the surface of the fabric.

Bane: medallion motif used on textiles and dance costumes during the Heian period [AoJ,v.1,pg.137]

Basho-: banana [Musa liukiuensis]: fiber of the inner leaf sheath; when stripped and braided used as thread; superceded asa as most common fiber in Okinawa [BtTB, Dusenbury, pg.41]

Benibana: safflower [Carthamus tinctorius] and the color derived from its' petals after many dippings; tint can range from pink to scarlet; very fugitive to sunlight [BtTB, Dusenbury, pg.25]

Bingata: polychrome textiles dyed with stencils against a red or yellow ground; originated in the Ryukyu Island (principally Okinawa), where is was reserved for the nobility; complex designs typically organized in parallel registers; pastels traditionally favored. Red sets the tone for the more colorful Bingata designs, while deep blue patterns provide a cooler feel.

Bokashi: shading or blending of color or ink, typically of yuzen dyeing and tsujigahana.

Bozugappa (priest cape): hip-length, semi-circular cape with shallow stand-up collar; formed from two layers of cloth (usually cotton) with inner layer of water proof paper; modeled after capes worn by Jesuits of the 17th century. [Trad.]

Bugaku: form of dance pantomime, based upon T'ang dynasty traditions; masked and unmasked roles form the model for noh; preserved by the Imperial court since the Heian period [trad.]

Chayatsuji/zome: bleached, hemp or ramie cloth, that is dyed with indigo by means of rice-paste resist techniques; characterized by small, fine-lined elements; landscape scenes are typical and sometimes ornamented with embroidery; generally preferred for summer wear, by women of the samurai class during the Edo period [AoJ,v.1,pg.107,137]

Chayazome: summer kimono made of ramie and created by special tsutsugaki technique; worn by high-ranking samurai women.

Chijimi: Formally called Omeshi Chirimen, which is pre-dyed fabric with fine wrinkles on its surface. The wrinkles come out with strongly twisted silk weft threads.

Chirashimoyo (scattered motifs): style of decoration featuring motifs randomly scattered (apparently); yet with a well-balanced and overall composition [JCaTA,pg.125-131]

Chirimen: A plain weave silk crepe fabric. The warp is untwisted, unglossed thread and the weft is highly twisted, unglossed thread. These twisted threads are then starched to retain the twist while weaving. After weaving, the starch is washed out of the fabric, allowing the twist in the wefts to be released, creating a fabric with a crinkled surface. Favored ground for Yuzen dyeing.

Choken: open-front coat used mainly for female Noh roles with double-wide sleeves; loosely closed with cord ties.

Choma: ramie [Boehmeria nivea]; leaf fiber used in folk textiles; [BtTB, Cort, pg.38]

Chugata: literally, 'middle size pattern', this refers to stencil dyeing using stencils with patterns larger than komon. The term is nowadays used synonymously with yukata or summer kimono. Resist rice paste is applied by stencil to both sides of the fabric prior to dip-dyeing.

Chuya-Obi: A reversible Obi with contrasting patterns on each face. Literally, "Chuya" means night and day. As early Chuya-Obi had black side and patterned side, it is compared to dark night and bright day time.

Daimyo: colloquial term for a clan leader; technically, one who held an estate producing 10,000+ koku (50,000 bushels of rice) per annum and was directly subject to the Shogun at the time of Tokugawa Ieyasu's death [HoJ,v.3,pg.___].

Dandarazome: style of kosode decoration consisting of dramatically-colored stripes that are dyed rather than woven; popularized by Mizuki Tatsunosuke, a Kabuki actor [JCaTA,pg.40]

Dangawari: a type of kosode that is decorated in large check or plaid pattern; with or without floral motifs [JCaTA, il.9,13]

Dobuku or Dofuko: A man’s outer coat, worn by the upper echelon of the warrior class from the fourteenth to the early seventeenth century. It was the forerunner of the present day haori.

Donsu: damask weave with isolated motifs on a satin ground; particularly in emulation of Ming dynasty styles [trad.]

Eboshi: style of peaked cap worn by the bushi class; usually made of braided, and lacquered fiber or horesehair [trad.]

Edokomon: variety of small-figured, densely repeated, textile pattern, created by means of resist stenciling; characteristic style from Edo; often favored by the samurai class for formal wear [AoJ,v.1,pg.137]

Edoyuzen: style of decoration that sparingly employs yuzen techniques; named after Edo (now Tokyo) and reflects the sober taste of the Shogun's court. Edo-yuzen is characterized by its pale colour and patterns painted only on the front side.

Egasuri (picture kasuri): style of kasuri pattern featuring naturalistic motifs; often combined with geometric ones as well [trad.]

Eigata: resist-dyed fabric in traditional Okinawan style; similar to bingata, but features an indigo, either as the ground or in the motifs, and characterized by a pale color palette [trad.]

Emoyo: “pictorial design”., as opposed to geometric or abstract patterns

Enuki: a patterning technique in which coloured wefts are used in addition to the warp and weft threads of the woven ground.

Fuji: wisteria [Wistaria chinensis]; also, bast fiber favored for fabrics that require durability in water [BtTB; Cort, pg.38]

Fuki: an addition or extension of the hemline of a kosode, especially the uchikake. It is a roll of padding covered by the lining that both weights the garment, thereby controlling the fall of the skirt, and protects the expensive fabric of the kosode from soil and wear.

Fukuro obi (bag sash): ): In it’s original form, the fukuro obi was woven as a tube, however, more recently it is constructed of two pieces sewn separately and sewn together. They are patterned fully or 60% on one side with the reverse side usually blank. Appropriate for formal and semiformal occasions.

Fukusa: An embroidered, dyed or painted square fabric cover with a lining that is laid over a gift when presented by the giver.

Funabashi (boat bridge): a landscape motif, consisting of a curved bridges and punted skiffs; a popular motif in the Edo period [AoJ,v.1,pg.108]

Furisode: Literally meaning “swinging or waving sleeves”. A long-sleeved heavily patterned variation of the kosode worn by children and unmarried women on special occasions. Waving the sleeve was thought to attract a husband.

Furoshiki: wrapping cloth: square cloth used for wrapping, storing and carrying objects.

Fusenryo (floating line): originally, a type of plain twill fabric with designs created by an over-weave of loose threads; now designates, a pattern of large medallions, which was a common motif for those fabrics [AoJ,v.1,pg.137]

Futonji: bedding cover.

Gagaku: style of theatrical performance that combines Bugaku and Gigaku arts; based upon T'ang dynasty traditions; adopted by Imperial court as the basis for court ceremonial entertainment [trad.]

Genjiko: geometric motifs associated with the 54 chapters of the Genjimonogatari; originally markers used in an incense game (Ko' awase); often used for textile decoration and on porcelains [trad.]

Gigaku: style of orchestral music extant in Japan; based upon T'ang dynasty traditions and preserved by the Imperial court; forms the basis for Gagaku performances [trad.]

Ginran: twill silk fabric with decorative motifs woven in silver thread; first introduced to Japan during Ming dynasty [JCaTA,pg.143,44]

Gojiru: soy bean extract, a milky liquid made by grinding soy beans that stabilizes the colours of dyes and pigments and prevents blurring.

Goshotoki (palace motifs): repertoire of design motifs favored in Shogun's household [JCaTZ, pg.90]

Goshuden (palace style): restrained style characterized by small motifs; stressed dignified effects; emulates yusoku style; constitutes yabo taste: thought staid by urban class [JCaTA, pg. 87-90]

Gotenjo: style of decoration; resembles coffered ceilings, commonly seen in shrines and temples; especially if floral motifs are set in a square grid [trad.]

Habutae: smooth, glossy, and tight, plain weave silk; resembles taffeta; first produced at Nishijin (Kyoto) from the Momoyama period onward [AoJ,v.1,pg.137]

Hagi (bush clover): one element of the akigusa motif; plant has glossy oval leaves and fine purple flower heads [AoJ,v.1,pg.69]

Hakama: since the Heian period, pleated, loose, overtrouser, put on after the kosode; now, largely reduced to just a pleated skirt without interior division; largely used in men's formal dress; types include hanbakama, hangire, nagabakama, Sendaibakama, or umanori; length and fit dependent upon intended activities such as kendo (fencing) or kyudo (archery).

Hakata obi: single layered, tightly woven obi; characterized by thick weft threads and stiff, tight weave; originated in Hakata [trad.]

Hakkake: hem of the lining of kimono. Usually, the colour for hakkake is bright and selected to match the color of Kimono. It is also called suso-mawashi. The colour and design of hakkake appears and disappears while walking, which looks elegant and fashionable

Hanabishi (flower diamond): diamond-shaped floral motif consisting of four petals with foliate edges; frequently placed in a geometric lattice of hexagons or rhombuses [AoJ,v.1,pg.137]

Hanaguruma (flower cart): decorative motif featuring a two-wheeled cart with yoke (modeled after Heian period ox-carts) and flowers (often arranged in a large basket or vase) [trad.]

Hanbakama: ankle-length hakama consisting of both a pleated front and separate back portion that are joined at the outer leg seams; marked by even hemline and no interior separation [trad.]

Hangire: form of very full hakama with elaborate woven designs and gathered at the ankles.

Hanhaba obi: a kind of Obi that is half the width of other Obi. You can wear Hanhaba-Obi more casually with Yukata and other Kimonos.

Haori (“to put on”): A short, kimono-style jacket worn over the kimono. The front is left open rather than overlapped and is tied with silk cords. Originally worn by men only. Women allowed to wear after Meiji-era, and became all the rage in Taisho period (1912-1926). Men's haori often have unique pictures, woven, painted or printed on their linings.

Happi: unlined, half-length, open-front coat, with full-length collar; typically, sleeves are close-fitting [trad.]

Harite: wooden bars used to stretch bolt of kimono cloth

Heko obi: sash of loosely woven fabric; usually three meters in length for adults; often decorated with shibori designs; can be worn by both genders in casual settings, but most often my males and children with yukata [trad.]

Hi: shuttle, a boat-shaped piece of equipment made of wood, sometimes with metal components, that is used to pass the weft thread between the warps. The weft thread is wound around a tube in the open centre of the shuttle.

Hikeshi Hanten: a thick fireman’s jacket

Hikizome: A technique in which dye or pigment is applied to fabric by brush, as opposed to immersion dyeing. Used in yuzen dyeing.

Hingatabon: pattern books for kosode designs; first circulated in 17th century as means of ordering custom work [K:FC,pg.271-321]

Hiogi: folding fan made from cypress splints; an accessory of Heian period court dress; a common motif for textiles [trad.]

Hiraori: plain weaving, in which the warp threads and weft threads cross each other alternately. Plain weave fabrics are sturdy and hard-wearing, and are ideally suited for use as everyday wear or work clothes.

Hirosode (wide sleeve): wide in this context is measured along the cuff opening; in contrast to the kosode, the cuff is left open [JCaTA,pg.13]

Hitoe: Literally “one layer”. Hitoe used as a noun is a name for the unlined silk summer kimono. As an adjective, hitoe is used to describe a single-layered garment such as an unlined kariginu.

Hitokoshi-Chirimen: A kind of Chirimen, crepe silk. This is characterized by its small and minute wrinkle. This crepe silk is flat and very firm.

Hitotsumi: long Kimono for infants.

Hiyokujitate: tailoring technique; simulates additional layers by permanently attaching extra interior sleeves or collars [trad.]

Ho: open-front coat; worn by male courtiers with double-width sleeves; often in combination with hangire when used for Noh performances.

Hoju: Buddhist pearl that is shaped like a peach; it has a rounded form with a pointed top and may be ringed with a flaming aura. One of the auspicious Collection of Treasures motifs.

Homongi: ’Homon’ means `to visit' and `gi' is a `wear'. It's a formal wear both married and unmarried women. It can be worn at the parties or when calling on somebody. It's characterized by colorful designs running continuously over the seams. The length of the sleeves varies, unmarried women wear with longer sleeves. Homongi is usually worn with the double-folded(fukuro) obi with matching obi-age(bustle sash) and obijime(a tyeing cord).

Horaisan: [Ho-rai : mountain]: mythical mountain where Taoist immortals were said to dwell; often depicted as a island capped by a lone peak; derived from the Chinese name P'eng-lai Shan [AoJ,v.1,pg.138]

Hosoge: floral motif frequently used in Buddhist ornamentation, which features an imaginary flower of even-numbered petals; perhaps originally based upon the peony [AoJ,v.1,pg.40-44]

Ichimatsu: checkerboard pattern in light and dark colors; largely popularized in the Edo period (1741) by Sanogawa Ichimatsu, an Osaka actor [JCaTA,pg.40

Igeta: decorative motif consisting of two sets of parallel beams, criss-crossed and enclosing a diamond; form represents drinking well as seen in isometric perspective; frequently used as kasuri motif [trad.]

Iki: (pure, unadulterated): chic, up to date; a standard of taste that favored sophisticated simplicity; established in opposition to yabo; applied especially to personal dress [JCaTA,pg.87-92]

Inkin: stamped gauze weave; originally a Ming import; usually small motifs.

Irotomesode: a formal kimono same as kurotomesode but the base is not black but beautiful light colors. It's the second most formal kimono for married women. It also has five family crests and have more festive air and worn at formal parties or gatherings.

Ishidatami (paving stone): checkerboard pattern originally derived from stone paving in Chinese palaces; similar to ichimatsu but often laid on a diagonal and without color contrasts [AoJ,v.1,pg.138]

Itajime: A dyeing technique similar to that used in the Nara period to make kyokechi resist dyed textiles that involves clamping yarns or lengths of fabric between wooden boards, usually used in groups of 10-20, that have been carved with decorative motifs. When the dye is poured on the clamped areas remain white.

Jiire: Sizing of the fabric prior to dyeing with gojiru, seaweed glue or water to prevent blotching and to ensure an even take up of the dye.

Jinboari: sleeveless half-coat worn by warriors on the battlefield. Jinbaori patterns were often designed to show off a warriors military power.

Jinken: an artificial fiber similar to dacron-polyester

Jofu: superior grade of plain-weave hemp [Cannabis sativa]or linen cloth; especially favored for summer wear by the samurai class; see katabira; later applied to summer weight fabrics that have a similar texture (even silk) [BtTB, Nagasaki, pg.17]

Jomon: pattern produced by shaping clay vessels with a paddle or stick wrapped with twisted cord; the pottery and period derive their names from this technique [AoJ,v.1,pg.138]

Juban: undergarment worn beneath the kimono; it’s construction is similar to that of the kimono. Traditionally the patterns and colors are bold. Naga-juban are ankle length, and han-juban are hip length.

Junihitoe (12 unlined): colloquially, the term applied to a 12 layered form of dress for court women, which originated in the Heian period; actual number of layers varied with time; sometimes as many as 15 or as few as nine; [JCaTA,pg.14]

Kagayuzen: style of decoration employing yuzen technique; motifs and compositions reflect a more exuberant taste developed in Kaga (present Ishikawa); especially when persimmon red is used; also Kagazome [trad.]

Kakeshita: name for the kimono worn under the uchikake during a wedding ceremony.

Kaketsugi: mending technique. To sew a torn part to hide the seam.

Kaki-e: Hand-painting on fabric, usually with sumi ink. The best-known example is the use of kaki-e in tsujigahana textiles.

Kaku obi: stiff, single-layer obi some 4-5 inches in width; mostly worn by adult males, but sometimes also by adult females [trad.]

Kakuregasa: magic “hiding hat”, one of the auspicious Collection of treasures motifs.

Kakuremino: magic “hiding cape”, one of the auspicious Collection of Treasures motifs.

Kamiko: treated paper (usually made from mulberry fiber); used as fabric for clothing [BtTB, Nagasaki, pg.17-19]

Kanebukuro: “money bag”, one of the auspicious Collection of Treasures motifs.

Kanoko (fawn): ): tie-dye technique; named for its' resemblance to the spotting on a fawn's coat [trad.]

Kanoko-Shibori: One of the tie-dyed techniques. The pattern looks like dots on the back of deer. Kanoko literally means infant deer.

Kappa (cape): specifically, thigh-length traveling cape; semi-circular form, with shallow stand-up collar; usually double layer of cotton fabric with waterproof paper sandwiched between [Trad.]

Karakusa: Literally “Chinese grasses”. A design of curving tendrils, sometimes with leaves and flowers, introduced into Japan from Tang dynasty China in the eighth century. “Arabesque”, another translation of karakusa, is an inaccurate description of these textile designs. Unfortunately, it was chosen rather than “foliage” or “scroll work”, two other meanings of karakusa.

Karaori (Chinese weave): compound weave, with satin designs on a twill ground; highly embellished with multiple colors and gold; now largely used exclusively in Noh drama [AoJ,v.1,pg.138]

kari+ginu: short over-jacket; with round collar closure and drawstring duffs; often used for Noh- male roles [trad.]

Kariyasu: yellow tint obtained from miscanthus grass [Miscanthus tinctorius]; [BtTB, Dusenbury, pg. 27]

Kasanegi (multi-layered wear): style of dress that derives it effect from the contrast of many layers of single-colored garments.

kasuri: technique for creating patterns in fabric by selectively dying warp and/or weft threads before weaving them together; pattern edges are often blurred due to inexact registration of the threads; geometric figures in white and indigo are most common, with the most popular being cross and parallel cross designs; also applied to fabrics that employ this technique; see also egasuri [AoJ,v.1,pg138]; [BtTB, Dusenbury, pg.57-74]

Katabira: unlined summer kosode made of fine hemp cloth; often yuzen-dyed,and embellished with embroidery. The katabiri was often decorated with patterns that give a “cool” feeling, such as flowing water or snow.

Kataginu: stiff, sleeveless jacket or jumper worn as a costume in Kyogen drama [AoJ,v.1,pg.109,114]; similar in form to the upper half of the kamishimo

Katamigawari (half-and-half): style of garment in which the halves are made from different fabrics or designs; sleeves may be alternated as well [AoJ,v.1,138]

Katasuso (shoulder and hem): style of decoration for kosode confined to the shoulders and hem; often done in embroidery [JCaTA,pg.119]

Katazome (stencil dying): dye technique; starch resist process applied with paper stencils; one paper stencil per color required. Often dip-dyed, but sometimes dye is applied by brush or thickened and applied by tube. Stencil dyeing is well suited for mass production, while the designs, made by repetition of the patterning process, have a uniquely rhythmical beauty that has been cherished by people in all parts of Japan since ancient times. Bingati is the bright, polychrome katazome developed in Okinawa.

Kesa: rectangular or trapezoidal stole worn by Buddhist priests; often paired with an ohi of similar design; is draped under the right arm and cinched over the left shoulder with cords; styles vary according to sect. Kesa are often made of patchwork to suggest the patched clothing of the poor

Kicho: curtain: standing curtain used to partition rooms or to block the wind.

Kihada: yellow tint derived from the bark of Amur cork tree [Phellodendron amurense]; [BtTB, Dusenbury, pg. 27]

Kikko: “tortoise shell”: hexagonal motif used as an allover pattern or as a single unit. Has felicitous connotations because the tortoise symbolizes longevity.

Kimono: : literally “the thing worn”. Originally, to the Japanese kimono meant simply “clothing”, but today kimono sometimes is used often as a generic term for all types of kosode and as the name for any contemporary garment that in any way resembles the kosode. However, the contemporary wearer of these garments uses the proper Japanese name for each garment. Kosode, not kimono, is the generic term used when referring to the kimono-like garments worn in earlier periods.

Kinran: twill silk fabric; decorative motifs are woven in gold thread; introduced to Japan during Ming dynasty [JCaTA,pg.143,44]

Kinsai-Yuzen: from Yuzen-zome. Gilt technique with gold and silver

Kinsha: fine grade of chirimen [trad.]

Kinsya: High quality silk-gauze woven with foil, gold and silk threads. As it is thin and light, it is used for summer wear.

Kintoshi: silk fabric woven with gold threads.

Kiri hoo: combined paulownia and phoenix motif.

Kirihame: decorative fabric inserts or applique; formerly known as zogan [JCaTA,pg.157]

Kissyo-Ka: auspicious flowers such as chrysanthemum, peony, plum flower, Paulson and others

Kofurisode: Short-sleeved furisode. The length of the sleeves is about 30 inches.

Kogin: dense geometric patterned embroidery on work clothing.

Komainu: guardian dog, a mythical lion-like beast that repels evil.

Komanui: Couching: Colored, gold, and silver threads that are too thick to pass through the eye of a needle are laid along the underdrawing and couched by another thin silk thread.

Komon: fine overall pattern; usually resist dyed; favored by samurai for formal wear [trad.]

Koshimaki (hip wrap): style of wear characterized by belting only the lower half of kosode at the waist and allowing the upper half to drape freely; also kosode of stiff brocade designed for this style [trad.]

Kosode: : literally “small sleeves”. The kosode is the forerunner to the modern kimono worn by married women. In the Heian period, it was worn as an undergarment by both men and women of the court nobility. Later it became the outer garment for all the classes. The “small sleeves” referred originally to the small opening for the wrist, which distinguished the kosode from the “osode”, “large sleeves”, in which the wrist opening was the full length of the sleeve. In modern times, “kosode” also have “small sleeves” in the sense that that they are shorter than those of the furisode.

Kotobuki: ideogram meaning "long life" and "prosperity"; often used on textiles and porcelain [trad.]

Kozo: mulberry [Broussonetia; bast fiber used for paper; paper used either as fabric or woven with other fibers [BtTB, Cort, pg.38]

Kuchinashi: yellow tint derived from gardenia hulls [Gardenia jasminoides]; [BtTB, Dusenbury, pg. 27]

Kuro: black tint derived from initial immersion in brown (usually derived from native acorns), followed by application of iron mordant; [BtTB, Dusenbury, pg. 27]

Kuro Montsuki Haori: formal black crested haori

Kurotomesode (black tomesode): ): formal kimono characterized by narrow cuffs and black ground; decorated with appropriate motifs in yuzenzome; worn by the mother and female relatives of the principals when attending weddings; by contrast, invited female guests wear the irotomesode [trad.]

Kusakizome: dyeing using plant extracts.

Kyogen: Literally “wild words”. An interlude of light social comedy or parody between two Noh plays in which the actors use ordinary speech or a dialect and do not wear masks. There is no musical accompaniment.

Maiginu (dance robe): garment, based upon court dress; generally used for female dance roles in Noh performances [trad.]

Maiwai: fisherman’s ceremonial jacket.

Mame shibori: style of tie dying; said to resemble bean (mame) shape but split by a resisted line [trad.]

Maru obi: obi made from double-wide fabric, which is folded lengthwise, and hemmed at the selvages; always fully patterned; usually decorated in small, repeated motifs; often in multiple colors; typically the most formal obi worn by women [trad.]

Matsuinui: An embroidery technique for rendering lines. The curved stitch follows upward the lines of the underdrawing and the width of the lines are varied by the layers of the stitch.

Matsukawabishi: “pine bark lozenge”, a geometric motif of three superimposed diamond forms used as an allover repeating pattern as well as a single unit.

Mawata: The silk wadding processed from the cocoons that have been pierced as the moth emerged from the cocoon. The thread cannot be reeled as a continuous filament from a pierced cocoon, but the cocoon can be stretched into a fairly large, flat, thin square of wadding.

Meibutsugire: Fabrics imported from abroad during the 13th-16th century preserved in shrines, temples and the collections of daimyo families, they were highly prized and often used in the mountings of hanging scrolls or made into bags for tea ceremony utensils.

meisen: a woven fabric that has had both warp and weft threads resisted and dyed prior to the final set up of the loom and weaving, so as to produce a preplanned design. The meisen style silk kimono was the most popular garment at the beginning of the Showa era, and was mainly produced between 1910 and 1960. Meisen garments were casual wear for wealthy Japanese but a fine cloth for ordinary people. The technique is related to earlier methods kasuri (ikat), in which threads are resisted before dyeing and weaving, and e-gasuri ("picture-ikat"), a Japanese innovation in which threads are resisted, rather than direct-dyed, with the use of a stencil. The silk used in meisen fabrics was made from broken cocoon filaments and silk thread

Meyui: tie-dyed motif of hollow squares, formalized into a checkerboard pattern arranged on a diagonal; commonly used as a mon [AoJ,v.1,pg.139]

michi+yuki (rain+snow): 3/4 overcoat, usually worn by women; conforms to the kimono worn underneath and unlike the haori has a square collar that is closed with cords. [trad.]

Mingei: Japanese folk crafts.

Miyamairi: ceremonial kimono draped over a one-month old infant when first presented at ancestral Shinto shrine; usually styled like furisode but reduced; decorated with auspicious themes or motifs; mostly for boys.

Mizugoro+mo: over-garment for male Noh roles

mofuku: formal style of mourning dress with five mon (family crests) worn by both genders; characterized by plain black color and lack of ornamentation; complemented by black tabi [trad.]

Mojiri-ori: or gauze weaving, in which the warps are twisted together to create open-structured fabrics such as sha, ro and ra gauzes.

Mokume shibori (wood-grain): process of resist dying; parallel rows of basting stitches compress fabric into furrows and ridges; only exposed edge of shirred fabric receives dye solution; simulates the parallel lines of tree ring growth [trad.]

mon or kamon(Crests): a stylized, circular family crest displayed on certain Japanese clothing and used to identify family. handed down through the generations. It began as a heraldic emblem in the Heian period. Soon each noble family, the “daimyo”, began to adopt a specific crest. In the feudal period, samurai families adopted a mon to identify members of their clan during battles. After the Meiji restoration, the common people were permitted to use a family mon. Most mon designs are based either on flowers or geometrical designs. However, a few are based on the animals of the zodiac, birds, or butterflies. The mon design is dyed or woven at the back neck and top center of front and back of sleeves of the most formal black kimono (sometimes called a “five-mon kimono”). Slightly less formal are three-mon kimono with mon at the back neck and the top center back of sleeves. Formal haori and other kimono may have a single mon at the back neck.

Murasaki: : purple tint derived from gromwell [Lithospermum crythrorhizon] plant root; originally, a luxury import from China; also termed shikon; [BtTB, Dusenbury, pg. 27]

Naga hakama (long+hakama): a type of hakama worn exclusively indoors; during Heian Period, always red in color and worn by females with a white kosode as underlayer for more decorative and elaborate garments; in Edo Period most frequently worn at the Shogun's court on the most formal of occasions by daimyo[trad.]

Nagoya obi: a post-Meiji type of obi made from and extra long, standard width fabric; trailing end made by folding last few yards back upon itself then seaming the selvages; the plain remainder is folded in half, lengthwise and seamed all the way to the end; narrow portion is wrapped closest to the body [trad.]

Nambam (southern barbarian): the term originally applied to Portuguese and Dutch traders, who first arrived in Japan during the 16th century; by extension, any European; also motifs that either feature European figures or artifacts [AoJ,v.1,pg.139]

Nanago: satin: . A variation of hira-ori (plain weave) with a set of two warps and two wefts. The fine stone pavement pattern resembles fish eggs, after which the weave is named.

Nanten: [Nandina domestica]: traditional motif modeled on the shrub of the same name; especially noted for its' red berries [trad.]

Neriginu: type of glossed silk first produced at Nishijin in the Momoyama period [AoJ,v.1,pg.139]

Nerinuki: A plain weave (hira-ori) of unglossed silk (kiito) warps and glossed silk (neriito) wefts. It has a distinctive tension and luster and is favored in “tsujigahana” designs. It lost it’s popularity after rinzu appeared.

Nindo: honeysuckle [Lonicera sempervirens]; motif introduced from Korea; most popular during the Asuka and Nara periods; often organized as a palmette [AoJ,v.1,pg.20-24]

Nishi+jin (West camp): ): Kyoto district famed since the sixteenth for its' textile production; established in the Kamakura period to encourage the development of weaving and sericulture in Japan [trad.]

Nishiki: compound weaves with decorative warp and weft threads; usually on plain or twill ground; also indicates any highly coloful pattern; colloquially known as "brocade" [trad.]

Nobori: banner

Noh: form of theatrical performance; developed and patronized by the military class in the Kamakura period; an out-growth of court Bugaku and Gagaku traditions [JCaTA,pg.53, 54]

Noren: entry curtain. Split into two or more segments, and hung over a doorway.

Norikake-nui: : restitching undertaken in order to hold down long floats.

Noshi: bundle of abalone strips or paper used as an ornament for auspicious occasions; a decorative motif that represents same. Originally a “noshi” was a bundle of thin strips of dried abalone placed on a gift. Later it became a bundle of colourful bands of cloth tied in an ornamental knot. Then it became a piece of folded paper, “origami”, in which was inserted a strip of dries abalone. If the abalone is replaced by flowers, it is called “hanonoshi”

Noshime: robe of kosode form with wide lapels; used as a basic garment for commoner dress in Noh performances; also used in conjunction with other garments for major roles [trad.]

Nuihaku: A combined technique of embroidery and “surihaku” (applied metallic leaf). Also refers to Noh robes decorated with this technique.

Nuikiri: Also called hiranui: An embroidery technique in which comparatively small-sized motifs are freely rendered in satin stitch regardless of the warp or weft structure of the weave. This is the most common technique for depicting a flat surface.

Nume: unfigured satin. The ground is of a thin satin structure with a smooth, lustrous surface.

Nyoihoju: “wish-come-true pearl”, one of the auspicious Collection of Treasures motifs.

Obi (sash/belt): essentially a wrap-around sash, which keeps the front of the kimono closed; comes in many types and styles; all differentiated by gender, age, marital status, and occasion; some types are: chuya, fukuro, heko, hanhaba, kaku, maru, Nagoya, tsuke, Hakata

Obijime: long cord tied outside the obi for decoration.

Ohi: rectangular Buddhist vestment draped over left forearm; usually worn en suite with kesa, which it matches in form and fabrics; sometimes simulated by folded extension at left edge [trad.]

Ohyo: bast fiber of the elm [Ulmus]; primarily used by Ainu for clothing; does not readily hold dyes; often original yellow-brown fiber color remains untreated [BtTB, Cort, pg.42]

Omen: cotton: Omen spread in the East from its origin in South East Asia slowly. The earliest piece of imported cotton found in Japan dates from the 7th century however it was not until the 16th century that an adequate location to grow cotton was found in Japan, since the plant is semitropical and the Japanese climate was poorly suited for its cultivation. The introduction of cotton in the Edo period revolutionized textile products for commoners and was much more comfortable than bast fibers.

Omeshi: tightly woven plain weave; made with hand-twisted, dyed thread with a firm texture [trad.] Omeshi garments were popular throughout the Showa era, especially during the 1950’s.

Orinui shibori: tie-dye technique; characterized by offset patches of resisted fabric flanking a common dyed line; gives the appearance of clenched teeth; created by shirring fabric between two parallel lines of basting stitches [trad.]

Osa: reed, a comb-like frame consisting of thin strips of bamboo which is used to separate the warps and to beat the weft against the previously woven area of the cloth. Metal reeds are more common than bamboo reeds today.

Oshima tsumugi: variety of silk fabric made with hand twisted threads from Amami Island (Kagoshima); often dyed in kasuri technique with local earths; said to be long-wearing [trad.]

Ramie: the fine bast fiber used to weave delicate fabrics.

Rinzu: A self-patterned satin weave where the pattern is produced by the juxtaposition of the warp and weft faces of the weave. It is woven with the sericin still in the warps and wefts and is degummed (glossed) and dyed after being woven. Usually rinzu is woven in 4/1 or 7/1 warp-faced satin for the ground weave and ¼ or 1/7 weft-faced satin weave for the patterning. The fabric is reversible. The scheme of the patterning of rinzu differs from the other satin damask weave, donsu, in that rinzu has a more equal balance between the amount of space allotted to the ground weave and that occupied by the patterning.

Ro: Gauze weave alternating with plain weave. A warp yarn crosses three, five, or seven weft yarns in the plain weave, and the two warp yarns are twisted. Softer and more pliable than sha (gauze weave), ro was popular for summer kosode during the Edo period and remains in use today.

Roketsuzome: technique of hand-applied wax-resist dying; characterized by small, broken lines where resist has cracked and allowed dye to seep in; known in Nara period [trad.]

Rokuyo (six rings): motif of five rings arranged around a larger sixth; derived from Indian mythology; frequently used in family mon [AoJ,v.1,pg.139]

Ryozuma: a style of decorative composition found on tomesode; in vogue from late Meiji/early Taisho eras; characterized by a symmetrical repeat of motifs on the both lapels, which produces a single pyramidal image from lower-thigh to the hem [trad.]

Saganishiki (Saga brocade): a plain or compound weave with gilt or silvered paper for the warp and multiple colored silk wefts; because of the delicate warp, consumate skill and labor is required to produce only a few inches per day; presumably originated in Saga-ken [trad.]

Sakioro: “tear and weave”, a recycled weaving made of torn strips of used textiles.

Sakizome: refers to fabric that has been woven with dyed threads. Dyeing can be divided into pre-dyeing (sakizome) and post-dyeing (atozome). In pre-dyeing, yarn is dyed before being woven into fabric. Patterned weaves, pongee (tsumugi) and ikat patterns are examples of sakizome.

Same komon (stingray skin ko+mon): reserve pattern of dots; arranged in concentric arcs or scattered randomly; usually produced by means of resist stenciling; said to resemble sting ray skin [trad.]

Sarasa: One of the Kimono patterns on fine quality cottons. It has colorful patterns of human, plants, or other creatures (sometimes with mythical creatures). There are two ways of painting the sarasa pattern. One is to paint directly on the cotton, the other is to use a stencil.

Sashiko: traditional form of quilting technique used to improve the warmth and durability of garments; employs thick cotton thread in lines of running stitches; originally used to patch and extend the life of clothing; later used a prior to decoration as well as improve fabric by this means (especially fireman's protective clothing); regional varieties abound; [BtTb, Shaver, pg.45]

Sashinui: Long-and-short stitch. The inside of a motif is divided into several areas, which are then stitched from the outlines of each area toward the center of the motif in alternating long and short stitches. Used in realistic depictions or for a projected effect such as animal hair, and petals.

Saya: light monochrome figured silk with pattern in twill weave.

Sayagata: repeated maze pattern based upon swastika [trad.]

Seikaiha: Literally “blue ocean wave”; an imbicate scallop or shell pattern considered to be a stylization of waves.

Sericin (English): A gummy substance that glues together the filaments in a cocoon.

sha: stiff gauze weave with figured patterns; braiding of threads occurs in warp and weft directions; figures are created by changing to twill weave where design requires [trad.]

Shibori (Tie-Dye): a type of resist dyeing in which certain areas on the cloth are reserved from dyeing by binding dots, stitching, or clamping and squeezing the cloth between boards. Different from other dyeing techniques, shibori creates a raised and wrinkled surface on the finished work. Shibori may be machine-made or hand-made. The latter demands a high price because it is such elaborate and intricate work. The most primitive of all dyeing methods, tie-dyeing is practiced throughout the world. The most primitive of all dyeing methods, tie-dyeing is practiced throughout the world. Numerous tie-dying techniques have been handed down in Japan over the centuries. These may be divided into three main types: tying such as in Hitta (or kanoko (deer spot)) shibori and Miura shibori; stitching and gathering such as in hiranui (stitched) shibori, orinui (folded and stitched) shibori and mokume (woodgrain) shibori, and the use of water resistant materials such as bamboo bark or vinyl such as in kawamaki (leather wrapped) shibori and boshi (hat) shibori. In oke (bucket) shibori, part of the fabric is sealed inside a bucket and the fabric that is left outside is dyed. In ara (lit. 'storm') shibori or bo (rod) shibori, fabric is wrapped around a thick rod and squeezed. In the case of itajime, wooden boards with patterns carved into them are clamped to either side of the fabric before dyeing.

Shichigosan: Shichigosan is seven-five-three in Japanese. It is a gala day for children aged three, five and seven years of age. On November 15, parents take their children to a Shinto shrine to offer prayer for their children's growth. Boys are taken at age three and five, and girls three and seven. The children are dressed up in a gala kimono or fancy clothes to go to the shrines.

Shifu: fabric of cotton warp and twisted paper wefts [BtTB, Nagasaki, pg.17]

Shikishi: squares of tinted or decorated paper used for inscribing poetry; also used as a decortive motif on kimono; see also tanzaku [trad.]

Shikon: purple tint.

Shikunshi: A general term for a combination of four plants; orchid, chrysanthemum, plum and bamboo.

Shina: Japanese linden; bast fiber used for fabric [BtTB, Nagasaki, pg.17]

Shinshi: Fabrics must be kept as flat as possible during dyeing. This is achieved by the use of shinshi, pliable bamboo rods with spikes at both ends. These are bent and the spikes inserted into the edges of the fabric, tensioning the fabric across its width. There are two kinds of shinshi: thin rods used singly and placed across the width of the fabric at right angles to the edges, and thicker rods used in pairs and joined together in a cross shape.

Shinzen: dip-dyeing used to dye both yarn and cloth.

Shippo: Interlocking circles. Literally “seven treasures”; a design said to symbolize the Seven Treasures of Buddhism: crystal (hari), lapis (ruri), gold (kin), silver (gin), mother-of-pearl (shako), coral (sango), and carnelian (meno).

Shiromuku: “pure white” White kimono worn with white and silver or gold obi for part of the wedding ceremony

Shishu: (embroidery): The word shishu is made up of two Chinese characters: "shi" meaning "to sew with a needle" and "shu" meaning "to stitch patterns with yarns of different colours".

Shitsuke: threads that keep kimonos in good shape while being remade after washing.

Shochikubai: (pine, bamboo, plum) motif: an auspicious design especially felicitous for wedding decorations or gifts.

Shok'o: geometric pattern of alternating octagons and squares; abstraction of turtle carapace; often has floral motifs set within each panel [trad.]

Shusu: satin weave. A simple float weave requiring a minimum of five warp and wefts groups where warps float over a minimum of four wefts, are never bound by more than one weft, and diagonal alignment of floats is prevented by maintaining at least one intervening warp between binding points on successive wefts. The surface is shiny and smooth.

sobatsugi: vest-like garment with an open front; modeled upon a sleeveless ho; used to represent armor for warrior roles in No- performances [JCaTA,pg.59,60]

Sode: : “sleeve”

Soko: Heddles or warp-controllers, important components of the loom that are moved up and down to separate groups of warp threads to enable the weft to be passed in between.

Somewake: style of kimono decoration with complex, overall compositions; executed in multiple techniques and elaborate detail; resulting in dense composite designs [JCaTA,pg.119,120]

Suehiro: open fan motif.

Suhama: stylized motif composed of three lobes; often employed as a landscape element (sandbar) [AoJ,v.1,pg.77,139]

Sumi ink: A black ink made of pinewood charcoal or lamp soot mixed with a gum-like substance soluble in water.

Sumi nagashi: (flowing ink): marble-like grain pattern produced by dripping ink on damp paper; frequently used to decorate poetry sheets in the Heian period [AoJ,v.1,pg.139]

Suo: a russet tint derived from sappanwood chips [Caesalpina sappan]; originally introduced to Japan from China in the Asuka period [BtTB, Dusenbury, pg.27]

Surihaku: Metallic leaf. Paste is applied to the fabric, and gold and/or silver leaf is pressed on. After the paste has dried, the excess leaf is rubbed off to articulate a motif.

Surihitta: A stencilled imitation of the shibori technique called hitta in which small square motifs with a small dot of color in the center cover a specific area.

Susohiki: a style of wearing the kosode indoors that allows the full hem to trail after the wearer; not comonly seen, except among geiko; by extension, a kosode that has an unbroken pattern which continues onto the interior lining; often worn in dance recitals with the lower overlap purposely folded outward [trad.]

Tabane-Noshi: One of the noshi-monyou patterns. Noshi originally means narrow strips of dried abalone bundled together in the middle, it was the ritual offering to God in Japanese Shinto religion. Often seen in the masterpieces of furisode kimonos, during the middle of Edo era, used by various techniques.

Taima: hemp [Cannibis sativa; leaf fiber favored for use in summer garments by the bushi class; also used as a motif [asa+no=ha]; [BtTB, Cort, pg. 38]

Takara zukushi: Collection of Treasures motif: a decorative design made up of auspicious objects deriving from Chinese legend.

Takarabune: treasure ship.

Takarakagi: “treasure key”, one of the auspicious Collection of Treasures motifs.

Takeyamachi: elaborate, figured gauze weaves; multiple colors and gold or silver thread may be added; named after the district of Kyoto where such fabrics are traditionally woven; especially favored by Zen clergy of the Kamakura period [JCaTA,pg.140]

Tamoto: hanging sleeve.

Tan: A standard bolt of kimono cloth sufficient to make one kimono. Traditional width of fabric is approximately 36 cm (14 inches) and length is 10.6 meters (about 12 yards).

Tanzaku: stiff, rectangular slips of paper; intended for transcribing poems; frequently used as a decorative motif on textiles; see also shikishi [trad.]

Tasuki: geometric motif, consisting of parallel lines forming a lattice of diamonds; originally, sawtooth border of triangles filled with parallel lines; earliest examples found on dotaku, a bell-shaped, ceremonial bronze form; [AoJ,v.1,pg.25,139]

Tate-nishiki: warp-patterned brocade

Tatewaku: pattern of vertical, evenly-spaced, undulating lines arranged along the warp (tate) that alternately define constricted then swollen spaces; frequently filled with other decorative motifs [AoJ,v.1,pg.139]

Tebako: lidded box with removable interior compartments; frequently rectangular in form; first used by court ladies as cosmetic cases; also used as a decorative motif on textiles and ceramics [AoJ,v.1,pg.139]

Tenugui: A small, all-purpose towel made of lightweight cotton, often with a stencilled or shibori design and indigo dyed.

Tochirimen: Also known as muslin. Thin fabrics woven with wool threads by Hira-ori that is the most common weaving technique.

Tomesode: formal kosode for married women at wedding and other formal occasions; typically decorated with yuzen-dyed motifs near the hem. Usually are adorned with family crests.

Tomoe: motif comprised of two, or more comma-shaped elements with the heads grouped at the center and the tails sweeped in the same direction to form the circumference [AoJ,v.1,pg.139]

Torii: ceremonial gateway which designates entry to Shinto precincts; constructed of two posts and one lintel that overhangs its' supports; often with additional braces for posts and sometimes an elaborate eaved roof [trad.]

Tsuba: disk-shaped sword guard worn on daisho (paired long and short sword); fitted over the blade; often elaborately decorated; motif sometimes used on men's clothing [trad.]

Tsujigahana (crossed flowers): decorative style that combines tie-dying and painting techniques; employs stitched borders to reserve areas for decoration; often supplemented by painted flowers; first popularized in Momoyama period; dyed edges often soft and blurred; [JCaTA,pg.145,48]

Tsukesage: informal, woman's kosode; characterized by decoration composed in vertical masses at both front and back hems [trad.]. One family crest on the center back is standard. Tsukesage is worn at either formal or informal occasions and refers to the way in which the patterns are dyed.The patterns of hemline go upward and meet at the top of the shoulders and the patterns on the sleeves also are the same.

Tsumugi: A textile woven with hand-spun threads from cocoon fibres. It doesn't have a glossy nor smooth texture, but tasteful rough texture. The low quality, dirty and dupion (double) cocoons that were an inevitable product of raising silkworms were used to make raw silk which the farmers, during the quiet months of winter, spun into yarn and wove into what is known as tsumugi (pongee). Unlike high quality silk yarn taken from good cocoons, tsumugi yarn has to be twisted and joined as it is spun. The small knots thereby created give rise to the distinctively nubbly texture of the woven fabric. The sturdiness of tsumugi made it popular for clothing among samurai as well as rich townsmen and farmers.

Tsuru: Crane motif

Tsuru Kame: combined crane and tortoise motif.

Tsurubami: grey-brown tint derived from acorns of oak [Quercus acutissima]; [BtTB, Dusenbury, pg.25]

Tsutsugaki: free-hand dying technique similar to yuzenzome; employs a squeeze tube to apply resist; produces a cruder line and hence a rustic look; [BtTB, Mellott, pg.53-5]

Tsuzumi: hand-held drum; usually played by striking with the free hand; sometimes used as textile motif in conjunction with other instruments, but other combinations are common [trad.]

Tsuzure ori: a form of tapestry weave in which the design threads are floated across the back of the fabric; often used for No' costumes [trad.]

Uchide no kozuchi: mallet of good fortune, one of the auspicious Collection of Treasures motifs. This mallet appears in traditional children’s tales, where it is depicted as granting the wishes of whoever shakes it.

Uchikake: Uchikake is a full-length unbelted outer robe with trailing hem. Until the Edo period, it was worn by women of Samurai, warrior, or noble families on special occasions. Since then, it had become a part of Japanese traditional bridal costume. Now it is only used for a wedding ceremony. The cotton is put inside the hemline to give added weight and form at the bottom

Uchiwa: round-faced fan: has fixed frame sandwiched between paper layers; often used as decorative motif in its' own right [AoJ,v.1,pg139]

Uki ori: : float weave, a patterning technique in which yarn is deliberately left to float across the surface of the underlying weave structure.

Umanori hakama: loose, pleated pants designed for sitting astride a horse or other outdoor activities; constructed from tanmono and tied at the waist; hem can be finished as even, open pleats, gathered by drawstrings at ankles, or fitted from the knee to the foot with button or tabi closures [trad.]

Unban: cloud-shaped bronze gong; first introduced with Zen Buddhism in Kamakura period; forms part of monastic paraphenalia [AoJ,v.1,pg.121,139]

Uroko: reptile (fish or snake) scale motif consisting of equilateral triangles arranged in parallel rows and ranks; usually single color constrasts with fabric ground [trad.]

Wachigai: geometric pattern used on yusoku textiles; see shippo tsunagi

Wafuku: : literally "Japanese dress"; in contra-distinction to yofuku; word coined in Meiji era to distinguish it from non-traditonal [i.e. Western] dress; [K:FC,pg.10]

Warabide: fern leaf pattern [AoJ,v.1,pg.139]

Warinui: A variation of hiranui (satin stitch). The bilaterally symmetrical motif is divided into two areas by its axis and embroidered from its outlines towards the axis. It produces a V-shape and is suitable for such motifs as leaves and feathers.

Yabo: : "good taste" as defined by samurai class as opposed to court styles (see goshuden); later interpreted to mean "old hat", "out-of-date" when applied by the chonin class to samurai styles; now used to define trite taste (especially in personal dress); juxtaposed to iki [JCaTA,pg.87-89,90]

Yaburitsugi (torn patches): Heian-style paper collage technique frequently used to decorate paper for transcribing poems; sometimes used as a textile motif [AoJ,v.1,pg.58,139]

Yagasuri: repeated kasuri pattern resembling arrow (ya) fletching; usually created by staggering warp threads that have been resist dyed to produce trapezoidal forms [trad.]

Yamagata: horizontal border with abstracted representation of mountains; either plain zig-zag line or with crenellated points added on top [trad.]

Yatsuhashi (8-plank bridge): ): a planked foot-bridge motif; often laid among iris marshes; popularized by Ogata Korin, a leading Rimpa School artist of the Genroku Era [AoJ, v.1,pg.108]

Yofuku: lit. "Western Clothing"; in contra-distinction to wafuku; coined in Meiji era to differentiate clothing [i.e. "kimono"] into native versus foreign dress [K:FC,pg.10]

Yogi: oversized, padded kimono-form comforter; developed for cold weather sleeping; often elaborately decorated in tsutsugaki technique when it formed part of a brides trousseau [trad.]

Yotsumi: Kimonos for about 4-13 year-old kids.

Yukata: very casual, unlined kosode; typically made of cotton or other vegetable fiber; usually dyed with indigo utilizing the katazome technique; traditionally worn after a bath; nowadays, more commonly worn at festivals and at traditional Japanese inns.

Yukiwa: “snow flake and circle” pattern.

Yusoku: originally the customs and ceremonies of the Imperial court; by extension, traditions of the Heian period, which reflects court taste; many motifs are of foreign origin [AoJ,v.1,pg.123]

Yuzen: A combination of techniques using resist paste to define different-colored pattern areas, to create fine white outlines, and to protect pattern areas from the background color, which is usually applied by brush (hikizome). In the late 17th century, a Kyoto fan painter by the name of Miyazaki Yuzen took Japan by storm with his novel designs and sophisticated dyeing technique, transforming the world of Edo period fashion. In a stroke this new technique, which was named Yuzen dyeing after its inventor, swept aside the design limitations of the hitherto mainstream decorative methods of shishu (embroidery) and shiborizome (tie-dyeing). During the 20th century a new method was developed using raw rubber instead of rice paste. This and the use of wax resist have further expanded the artistic possibilities of Yuzen dyeing. To create a yuzen-dyed garment, the fabric is subjected to the following fifteen processes: 1) the fabric is washed. 2) the fabric is steamed to smooth it and to make it a uniform width. 3) the fabric widths are loosely sewn together so that the pattern can be adjusted to the seam allowances, after which the stitching is taken out. 4) the outlines of the patterning are painted on the fabric with a blue extract of aobana, that will disappear when the fabric is washed. 5) The outlines of the patterning are covered with a rice paste resist. When the paste is applied in very fine lines that become part of the patterning, the yuzen is called itome yuzen. 6) The fabric is brushed with a fine soybean extract made by dissolving a ground soybean mash in water. It prevents the dyes from running and is essential for the setting of the dyes in step 8. 7) The motifs in the patterned areas outlined by the resist paste in step 5 are painted with dyes. 8) The fabric is steamed to set the dyes. 9) The patterned areas are covered with a thick layer of rice paste. 10) The entire fabric is brushed with the white soybean extract to assure an evenly colored background. 11) The dye for the background is brushed over the entire surface of the fabric. 12) The fabric is steamed to set the background dye. 13) All the paste and excess dye is washed out of the fabric. 14) The fabric is steamed to smooth it and make it a uniform width. 15) The fabric is sewn into a garment.