Antique black chirimen silk fabric
Antique black chirimen silk fabric, unused bolt, 37.5 cm wide, black with small white mon, would have been used to make a highest formality 5 mon ensemble.
This fabric is superb, heavy, drapes like falling water, and it is, to use a Goth-ism, the very blackest of blacks.. at regular intervals there is a small white circle or mon that would have received the family crest of the wearer, but otherwise this is a pure unbroken river of black.
Sold by the running metre.
• Chirimen Silk: Chirimen fabric is a thick, heavy silk crepe, a crinkled fabric made by the weft threads being kept tighter than the warp threads during the weaving process. Weft threads are twisted as they are woven, resulting in a uneven texture.
This weaving technique was developed in Japan over 500 years ago. Threads may be dyed before weaving, or the fabric can be dyed using various techniques after weaving.
Chirimen fabric drapes beautifully, and it is difficult to crease. Therefore it is very popular for making kimonos.
In addition to a wide variety of kimono, many accessories are made using silk chirimen.
- small bags
- furoshiki (wrapping cloths)
- fabric kanzashi (hair ornaments)
- obiage (scarf like cloths worn under the obi)
Recently chirimen-style fabrics have been made with cotton, rayon and polyester as they are less expensive and than silk to produce. However, silk chirimen is still the most popular chirimen for kimono fabric.
Depending on the colours and style, chirimen kimonos may be worn for both informal and formal occasions.
• Mon (紋?), also monshō (紋章?), mondokoro (紋所?), and kamon (家紋?), are Japanese emblems used to decorate and identify an individual or family. While mon is an encompassing term that may refer to any such device, kamon and mondokoro refer specifically to emblems used to identify a family. An authoritative monreference compiles Japan’s 241 general categories of monbased on structural resemblance (a single monmay belong to multiple categories), with 5116 distinct individual mon (it is however well acknowledged that there exist lost or obscure mon that are not in this compilation).
The devices are similar to the badges and coats of arms in European heraldic tradition, which likewise are used to identify individuals and families. Mon are often referred to as crests in Western literature; another European heraldic device similar to the mon in function.
Kimonos can have one, three or five Mon on them, the most formal being five.