This large Japanese vintage woven silk cushion is a gem that’s hard to find – its front is crafted from vintage woven silk celebratory “Obi” (kimono) fabric featuring gorgeous chrysanthemums, cranes, pines, ancient carriages for the noble, and all decorated with metallic silk threads.
About Vintage “Maru-Obi”: Why is This Fabric so Rare?
The “Obi” (or Japanese kimono sash) used to make these cushions is estimated to be older than 70 years. Named “Maru-Obi”, it is the most formal “Obi” with highest status and typically worn by brides, “Geiko/Maiko” entertainers or girls celebrating coming of age. In this particular vintage “Maru-Obi”, the gorgeous pattern is woven throughout the whole 4m roll with a width of 67cm. This type of fabric in an unused roll is extremely rare and difficult to find as production ceased around the 1950s. The reason being that it was too heavy and extravagant to have hand-woven pattern throughout the whole fabric, when only certain parts of this long sash will show when worn. “Obi” was worn by folding it half length way, meaning the back of it did not need to be decorative. Less woven pattern also meant it is much lighter when it is wrapped around the wearer’s waist. Post war, Japanese women started to move towards preferring a more practical and cost-effective modern Obi. This meant that the extravagant wide width “Maru-Obi” with patterns throughout, became less popular and eventually disappeared.
Our vintage silk “Obi” rolls are predominantly sourced through auctions in Japan. We might be relying on a classy grandmother who kept a roll in her chest of Kimono drawers made of paulownia wood for decades and decided to sell it.
Japanese “Obi” rolls usually come in 34-36cm in width so there are plenty of smaller 30x30cm cushions available elsewhere, but our large sized cushions (58x58cm) are quite hard to find as “Maru-Obi” with a width of 67cm with patterns throughout are not produced anymore. Only 6 or less cushions of this size are made from one roll.
This item will surely make a striking impression on your sofa or armchair. It will also make a perfect gift for someone with exquisite taste and appreciates good quality.
Size: 58cm x 58cm
Material: silk (front) / velvet or cotton (back)
It is a vintage fabric that would appreciate your TLC.
Available with either cotton or velvet back cover.
Recommended insert size is 65x65cm.
Please note: Cushion insert is not included in order to minimise shipping cost.
Dry clean only.