Embroidery Kiku obi
Dear Ichiroya newsletter readers
Hi, how are you doing? This is Mitsue writing.
It is already December, so just a month is left this year. Incredible! People begin to hustle and bustle at this time of a year. I'm going to clean my house and do 'Danshari'. 'Danshari' means reducing unnecessary things and bring harmony in life. 'Dan' literally means cutting off, 'sha' means throwing away and 'ri' means separating from the deep attachment to things which are not need. It might be hard to do, but I have to do now. Ganbarimasu!
Anyway, have you ever heard of 'Kiku'(chrysanthemum)dolls?
Kiku dolls are one of art crafts performing life-sized figures with 'Kiku'(chrysanthemum) and leaves. Usually the clothes are made of them, and the head, arms and feet are made of plastics and other materials. It is said the origin is from late Edo period(1603-1867) in Edo (present Tokyo). The themes are from the historical stories or popular dramas of that time.
Hirakata city, north-east of Osaka prefecture had been famous for Kiku doll exhibition until 2005. It had continued for 96 years, but closed its history due to the aging and the lack of of the craftsman successor. Now displays of the Kiku doll which civic volunteers made are exhibited at parks near the city hall or along the main street to Kyoto. Kiku dolls are deeply rooted to the citizen as a civic culture, so displays will continue from now on.
My uncle had lived in Hirakata city for long time, so he often took me to the Kiku doll exhibition every years when I was a child. However, Kiku dolls were so scared to me! I didn't want to go there, so my face looked depressed in old photos. In this October, I went to Hirakata city and saw a few displays at a park. I was not scared any more, on the contrary I was very interested in the scenes of the Kiku dolls. This year's theme is 'Sego-don', a NHK drama of Saigo Takamori, which is broadcasted on TV now. He is famous for closing the Tokugawa Shogunate and the Meiji Restoration. If I were interested in history in my childhood, I would have enjoyed more. Oh, what a regretful!
This photo shows Kirino Toshiaki (a member of the Satsuma feudal clan) and Saigo Takamori. They were very close friends.
This photo shows Shimazu Kiku (consort of Nariakira), Shimazu Nariakira (11th feudal lord of the Satsuma feudal clan), Atsu-hime (adopted daughter of Nariakira and married to 13th Tokugawa shogunate later) and Saigo Kichinosuke (former name of Saigo Takamori).
I also saw Halloween display with 'Kiku'(chrysanthemum). It was so charming!
Today, I introduce some items with 'Kiku'(chrysanthemum) design.
Kimonotte original from vintage kimono design:
Thank you for reading, and have a nice day!