Glad you could join me. I'm stitching a life together bit by bit.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

A Little Intro to Boro Cloth

Hi!  I'm glad you could join me here.  I've been wanting to start a blog for so long, and now that I've done it, its hard to know where to begin!

      A few days ago, I started Jude Hill's (http://spiritcloth.typepad.com/) class Contemporary Woven Boro along with dozens of other people.  I've been following Jude's blog for a year now - my anniversary I guess!  I've learned a lot from Jude in the last year - from her blog, and from her classes: Cloth to Cloth, Spirit Cloth, and The Beast class.  It's been an amazing year in terms of learning. Since the topic is boro, I'd like to share some pics I took of authentic Japanese boro cloth owned by Becky Scellato of the Shibori Dragon store in Lakewood, WA (www.shiboridragon.com/).  Her shop has the most amazing collection of Japanese threads and patterns for sashiko and all things Japanese.  She shared some of her collection with us last fall at the Portland, OR Quilt Expo in a sashiko class that my mom, Sally Jo, and I took.

Boro, translated as rag, is fabric that has been worn, patched up, and used again. Out of necessity and thrift, the fabric items used daily by the common person needed to be repaired as they wore out; so patches of fabric were stitched over thread bare areas.  Over time, a piece of cloth would acquire more and more patches with tiny stitches to secure them in place.  This was done on clothing, jackets, shoulder pads, bed coverings and even household rags.

Boro was originally used as a way to repair cloth by those without funds for new items. It was not displayed or collected, as it is now.  Fabric lovers from around the world have now come to appreciate the hand made nature of boro, the skill with which items were repaired, and the time it took to repair them. 


This is a jacket, with top folded forward and sleeves going to the left and right of the top of the picture.

This jacket was thick to keep the wearer warm in the cold Japanese winters.

For more information about boro or to start your own collection, you can visit: Sri Threads: http://srithreads.com/index.php.

Thanks for visiting and see you next time!


Phyllis said...

What a wonderful first post. I love the photos of this beautiful textile. What a gem. The description of the Boro and the details is really so informative. This actually reminds me of Jude and everything she loves. I will be back again and again. Thank you for the inspiration and the words of wisdom today. We will have to meet! I will call you later in the week. Congratulations on your new and exciting blog!

Juliann said...

Hi Janet
Saw your link on the Galloping Pony Retreat and thought I would stop by to say welcome to blogland.
Enjoy your weekend of sewing

jude said...

hey, welcome! and what a fabulous textile!

sally.wilson said...

Hi Janet - this is such a wonderful blog - a dream come true. This boro fabric is so wonderful -seeing the antique clothing in person was amazing. It is now one of my favorite fabric landscapes. I love the traditional Japanese fabrics. A woman's sewing skills were considered a very valuable asset in the prior generations; her skill at sewing was showcased on the family's clothing and home goods for their lifetime. Marriages were decided in part on sewing skills - particularly sashiko.

Janet said...

Hi! Thanks for the support. I'm enjoying sharing. Love the little stitches that run on and on. A river of thread.

lulu moonwood murakami said...

I am falling in love with boro cloth. Thanks for introducing this to me, Janet.