Negative space

Sometimes that which is not there stands out more than that which is. In this case, I’m referring to a missing dot among an otherwise complete shibori motif.

The shibori in question comes from a beautiful deep green cotton yukata with a peacock feather motif in my collection that I’ve had a few opportunities to wear. I can honestly say it is so very comfortable. The opening under the sleeves allows for ventilation, the sleeves themselves make wonderful pockets for storing things like my keys and cell phone, and the fact that my fair (i.e. cancer-prone) skin is covered from ankle to neck and wrist to wrist means a reduced risk of sunburn. Besides, cotton breathes. What’s not to like?

So here it is, the missing dot. I wonder, where did it slip off to?

In the greater scheme of things it doesn’t stand out quite so much, but it does serve as a reminder that this is very involved and labor intensive work. Mistakes will be made, and that makes the craft all the more human to me. I think I enjoy this piece more for it’s small imperfections than I would if it were uniformly perfect. And well, it’s green, my favorite color (aside from blue!). The entire yukata is shibori-dyed. It certainly stops people in the street when I wear it to shows in the summer.

Later this month or early May I would like to start focusing on sashiko. Shibori is fun because I have so much of it around and there are many books and even videos on the subject (I’ll cover videos at a later date), and as artists like Shibori Girl go to show, this is still an art that is very much in use around the world and by all ages. Sashiko is something I’m still learning myself, and the more I learn the more there is for me to know. Being the sort of person who thinks out loud, I find that I learn best when I’m talking or writing about a subject. So what better way to learn about sashiko than blogging about it, right?

If you have a suggestion or topic you’d like to see me cover, please let me know. I do read all replies and love to hear how some of you are learning as much as I am about these textiles.

4 Comments Add yours

  1. Kristen says:

    Now THAT is lovely. I bet it looks even more gorgeous in person. And while that missing spot doesn’t stick out too much, it just seems kind of… random. 🙂

  2. shiborigirl says:

    i imagine that the missing spot’s knot slipped off unnoticed before dyeing. it’s amazing to me when i look at this type of shibori that it doesn’t happen more often!

  3. Kristen, it IS random, isn’t it?

    shiborigirl, you’re right, it certainly is surprising it doesn’t happen more often, but I suppose that happens a lot with apprentices.

  4. Carol says:

    I’m looking forward to your blogging about sashiko since I just bought a kit!

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