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Furoshiki, a single piece of fabric, usually cotton, has been used in Japan for more than 1,000 years. The name has changed over the years – a record remaining from the Nara period (710-794) describes how people kept their valuables wrapped in fabrics called tsutsumi. In the Kamakura period (1192-1338), these same cloths were known as koromozutsumi. 

Meanwhile, usage of the word “furoshiki” increased as public baths (furo) became more common (1500-1600s). Originally a furo was not a soaking bath but a steam bath, and people used furoshiki to wrap their clothes while they were in
the bath. By the middle of the Edo period, people were commonly referring to wrapping cloths as furoshiki.

This Blue Whale design came into existence through the collaboration of the kata kata creative team and their whimsical illustrations and Musubi, the furoshiki cloth producer. The large size of this design (104cm x 104cm) means it can be used as home decor as well as for wrapping: hang it up as a poster, use it as a play mat or even as a backpack for kids.

About the makers:

MUSUBI is the brand of Yamada sen-i, which was established in 1937 as a manufacturer of Furoshiki. “MUSUBI” comes from “born(生す/musu)” and “beauty(美/bi)”. Additionally, “MUSUBI” means “a knot” and “to tie”.

Behind kata kata is the creative duo, Takeshi Matsunaga and Chie Takai. They produce original dyed fabrics using Katazome (stencil printing) and Chusen print techniques.


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