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  • Place of origin:

    Aomori (made)

  • Date:

    1880-1920 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Indigo-dyed plain weave ramie with a stitched cotton design

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This kimono was made and worn by a woman living in Tsugaru, a penisula in the very north of Honshû, the main island of Japan. It is woven with fine indigo-dyed ramie. The decorative panel on the upper part has been stitched in white with a diamond pattern, a technique known as kogin. If she was to make a good marriage it was essential that a Tsugaru woman master the skills of kogin, and training began at an early age. By her wedding day the bride was expected to have woven and embroidered a number of fine garments for herself and her future husband. These would be worn on special occasions.

Physical description

Kimono of indigo blue asa (ramie) fibre. The top section of the body is decorated with white cotton horizontal stitching (kogin) in a diamond pattern counted out on the threads of the asa tabby weave ground. The decorated part has been separately inserted. This type of stitching is characteristic of the Tsugaru district of Aomori Prefecture.
The top part of the collar band is reinforced with a strip of fabric in cotton and silk satin weave. The outside edge of each sleeve below the wrist opening is basted in alternate long and short running stitch with four thicknesses of white twisted yarn.

Place of Origin

Aomori (made)


1880-1920 (made)



Materials and Techniques

Indigo-dyed plain weave ramie with a stitched cotton design


Height: 4 in, Width: 4 in

Object history note

Purchased. Registered File number 1982/1458.

Historical context note

See Hauge, Takako & Hauge, Victor, Folk Traditions in Japanese Art, Tokyo/New York: Kodansha, 1978 page 145, plate 128 for a similar kimono.

Descriptive line

Kimono, indigo-dyed plain weave ramie with white cotton stitched design, Aomori Prefecture, Japan, 1880-1920

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Jackson, Anna, Japanese Textiles in the Victoria & Albert Museum, London: V&A Publications, 2000, plate 148
Jackson, Anna, Japanese Country Textiles, London: V&A Publications, 1997, page 110, fig 79
Earle, J. (editor), Japanese Art and Design: The Toshiba Gallery Guide, London: V&A Publications, 1986, page 171

Labels and date

Kimono for a woman

This kimono is woven from fine indigo-dyed ramie. The decorative panel was stitched in white cotton using an embroidery technique called kogin. The kimono was made in Tsugaru in northern Japan. By the time of her wedding day, a Tsugaru woman was expected to have woven and embroidered a number of such garments for herself and her husband.

Tsugaru, Aomori prefecture
Ramie with embroidery in cotton thread
Museum no. FE.141-1983


Ramie; Indigo; Cotton (textile)


Plain weave; Stitching

Subjects depicted



Clothing; Textiles; Women's clothes


East Asia Collection

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