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160906-0017 - Indigo Dying


Inside Meiji 1900s Unknown

Hikifuda (引札), a print used as an advertising flyer by local shops. They were popular from the 1800s through the 1920s.

This print shows men aizome dyeing (藍染め) using indigo. They are wearing happi coats. Two women in kimono are in the foreground.

The distinctive blue color of the indigo plant became symbolic for Japan. “Japan is a country filled with a mystical blue color,” wrote Irish-born author Lafcadio Hearn shortly after his arrival in Japan in 1890 (Meiji 23).

Kjeld Duits Collection
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