Hand-tied Te-kumo Shibori Blanks by Tomeko Honma

These Japanese tenugui (cotton hand towels) are hand-tied in te-kumo (spiderweb) shibori patterns by a master artisan, 96 year-old Mrs. Tomeko Honma from Arimatsu. Te-kumo is considered a foundation of Arimatsu shibori, and despite the apparent simplicity of the technique, great skill is required to tie the fabric with consistency and even spacing. Te-kumo artisans create different patterns by varying the spacing and binding position on each tied unit.

Zenmaki te-kumo pattern

ZENMAKI
全巻き

Tateshima te-kumo pattern

TATESHIMA
縦縞

Houzuki te-kumo pattern

HŌZUKI
ほうずき

Nemaki te-kumo pattern

NEMAKI
根巻き

Kani te-kumo pattern

KANI

Hidari te-kumo pattern

HIDARI
左り

You can dye and untie these blanks to reveal the shibori pattern, or keep them in their tied state as art pieces. Either way, they are exquisite examples of the art of shibori.

You can learn more about te-kumo techniques and the artisans in Arimatsu from our DVD, Arimatsu Narumi Shibori: Celebrating 400 Years of Japanese Artisan Design.