Washi -to spin

Washi is hand made japanese paper. After the paper is spun into yarn and woven, the handwoven paper textile is called Shifu. It takes on the feel of linen. The paper material is breathable, soft and warm though appears stiff.

Wa means Japanese and shi means paper. The art of paper-making was brought to Japan in 610 from China. The inner three barks of Kozo, Misumata and Gampi plants found in Japan are primarily used for making washi. The inner bark is pounded, stretched and added to a liquid solution to make a paste. It is then spread on a mesh to dry, before being spun into yarn.

During the 16th century shifu as clothing gave peasants a way to afford to clothe themselves. They used old ledger books making a rustic cloth. The making of paper textiles  eventually faded away until WWI when it became more in the foreground again until it died away again after WW II.

Enjoy the Art of Shifu.



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