For a few years I’ve been obsessed with the color indigo. This fascination has brought me to fall in love with a few blue things like China blue porcelain, denim (especially the art of Sashiko Stitching), which later brought me to discover shibori.
So what is shibori?
Shibori (pronounced “SHI-bor-ee”) is known to be one of the oldest Indigo dying techniques in Japan. It’s a special type of tie-dying where patterns are created by binding, twisting, folding or even stitching fabric, then dyed to create beautiful and unique patterns. The word comes from the verb root shiboru, “to wring, squeeze, press”.
Shibori was originally an art of the poor. Most popular in the early Edo period when lower class people where forbidden from wearing silk. Many could not afford to replace clothes regularly, so they would repair and re-dye them, and the art of Shibori evolved as a means of making old clothes look new. Shibori developed along two separate paths: as the method of decorating silk used for producing kimonos for the aristocracy of Japan (largely carried out in Kyoto), and as a folk art differing from region to region.
With the ever growing vintage denim trend we’ve been seeing emerging in the denim world, it was time for us to introduce our own Indigo collection. We asked ourselves, what kind of prints could we create to compliment this trend? This is when we had the idea to ask our mills to develop a few shibori tie dyes for us. After a few sad and unsuccessful tie dye strike offs, we realized that it was near impossible to ask our mill to produce in large quantity and at a reasonable price what is usually produced by hand. Still, we were not ready to give up on our shibori idea. This is when we had the idea to develop a few screen print designs of our favorite shibori patterns. The result came out looking amazing! We just received our production samples and couldn’t be more pleased. Click here to view the collection, Enjoy!