Shibori Japanese Tye-Dye
January 16, 2004 8:50 AM   Subscribe

Shibori is an amazing Japanese textile dying technique--a very sophisticated form of tie-dye, where nubby, lumpy, bizarre things like this are transformed after dying into this fish or these flowers (scroll for detail) or these starbursts. Specifically this odd thing became this (detail). You can find excellent photos and descriptions of the process here, here(scroll down and hold mouse over photo), and here. There is also information at the World Shibori Network . This photo shows partially dyed fabric and here is a video of the preparation for dying. Shibori is very labor intensive (carpal tunnel syndrome-city) and was a one time subject to a sumptuary tax and one form was outlawed by an emperor for being too extravagant. There are many different knots and ties for different patterns--browse here, here(gallery1-7), and here. Shibori can be used to make some striking and detailed images. Diverse examples of shibori --iris, layered squares, waves, kimonos, large bridge banner, subtle black and white winter scene, , a nifty “aerial view” of earth as a tidal pool with hot air balloons (detail of anemones). Don't miss the stunning work of Hiroko Harada (English/Japanese). I especially like Rain In the Forest, There Are Ripples On the Cloth, Seasonal Changes, and this large installation. You can browse more here, but the Japanese page has more.
posted by lobakgo (18 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
If you haven’t gotten enough on shibori, there are at least two museums here and here, a really neat looking festival (mouse over for color or enlarge, there are some neat pics of women dancing in shibori kimonos), and here is a detailed history of shibori--sadly the images aren’t available
posted by lobakgo at 8:54 AM on January 16, 2004

[this is good!]
posted by gen at 8:57 AM on January 16, 2004

That's amazing; I find it hard to believe that all those patterns can be produced by tie-dying. Great collection of links, lobakgo!
posted by carter at 9:13 AM on January 16, 2004

Really cool link!

I guess I'm just weird, but I find the picture for "bizarre" way cooler than any of the actual results, though...
posted by dvdgee at 9:15 AM on January 16, 2004

I'm more partial to shibari, but thats just me...
posted by SweetJesus at 9:17 AM on January 16, 2004

So, was this post inspired by yesterday's Martha Stewart Living?

(You did a much better job than she did.)
posted by fnord23 at 11:00 AM on January 16, 2004

Nice work, lobakgo! Really interesting!
posted by small_ruminant at 11:19 AM on January 16, 2004

fnord23--Martha inspired me to get off my butt(I saw her promo. but decided not to watch) and post what I'd been working on for a while. Glad you guys like the stuff--I was floored when I first saw a segment on shibori on TV after a Japanese drama several years ago.
posted by lobakgo at 11:50 AM on January 16, 2004

I'm more partial to shibari, but thats just me

Heh. My stepmother has taken up shibori in the last couple of years. A while back, when I went back for the holidays, I was a little shocked to see a large coffee-table-type book titled "SHIBORI" or something, just lying out in the open. It took me a moment, and a second and third glance before I realized that it wasn't Midori's.
posted by majcher at 11:54 AM on January 16, 2004

Yet another beautiful thing for me to lust after.

I curse you, lobakgo!

(fantastic post)
posted by contessa at 12:41 PM on January 16, 2004

Link density overload!
posted by smackfu at 1:15 PM on January 16, 2004

Quite a link, thanks!
posted by tomplus2 at 1:40 PM on January 16, 2004

*prostrates awestruck self before lobakgo*
posted by homunculus at 1:52 PM on January 16, 2004

very nice.
posted by vacapinta at 2:00 PM on January 16, 2004

Oh wow! So that's how they do that!
posted by inpHilltr8r at 5:21 PM on January 16, 2004

a large coffee-table-type book titled "SHIBORI"

Heh -- I'm tempted to buy that book and leave it out when people come over just to see who does a double-take.
posted by Zonker at 5:32 AM on January 17, 2004

This post may just win the Metafilter "labor of love" award for 2004.
posted by troutfishing at 9:14 AM on January 18, 2004

It's like a supercharged "Plep"
posted by troutfishing at 9:15 AM on January 18, 2004

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