Risa’s Story 2

I was given this kimono from my husband’s mother after I got married. She said she wore it often. When she tried to pass her kimono collection to the next generation, she picked some good colors for her daughter and me. She thought this color was good on me and she knew I was concerned about the stencil paper, so she picked this sarasa (chintz) kimono for me.

I was sent to three countries in South America by the Foreign Ministry for a Japanese Brand transmission project. I gave some speeches, and some exhibitions and workshops to explain about Japanese traditional patterns and stencil dyeing as a paper cutting artist. During those events, I wore this kimono. In South American countries, people were surprised when they found out that this kimono was dyed by hand. And they looked happy to know that kimono has many type of patterns, not only Japanese classic ones. Also they were surprised that we can wear our mothers’ or ancestors’ kimono, generation by generation.

結婚してから主人の母よりいただいた着物です。この着物は義母も大好きで良く着ていたそうです。義母が着物の整理を始めた時、主人の姉に合いそうな色の着物と、私に合いそうな色の着物を分けて譲ってくれました。私にはこの色が似合うと思ってくれたのと、私が型染めに関わっているのを知っていたので、この更紗の着物を選んでくれました。

今年、外務省の日本ブランド発信事業で南米3カ国へ派遣されました。現地では切り絵の作家として、日本の図案、型染めを説明する役として、講演や展示、ワークショップを行いましたが、そのときにこの着物を着ました。南米での反応ですが、まず、これが手染めだということに驚かれました。また、いわゆる「ザ・日本」と言うデザインとは異なった柄が着物にも使われるということが新鮮で喜ばれました。そして、義母から譲られた物が着られるということ、着物は何代にも渡って着られるということに驚かれました。

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