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"Kai Awase" Vintage Nagoya Obi

"Kai Awase" Vintage Nagoya Obi

Tacked for Display

Regular price $90.00
Regular price Sale price $90.00
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  • Ships from NY
  • One-of-a-kind
  • Sourced from Japan

This listing is for a vintage Japanese nagoya style obi from the Fuller Collection. See below for details on this exceptional group of Japanese textiles.

Nagoya obi are notoriously difficult to display because of their unusual shape - folded over for two-thirds of the length where it would be wound around the waist. But the Fuller Collection owners developed a unique way to display them - cleverly tacking the point of the fold to the narrow section and creating a loop at the top for a hanging rod to produce the long display shown in the photos.

This obi features classic imagery - a kai awase (shell memory game) container (with several shells peeking out at the top) decorated with dozens of chrysanthemums. The palette is traditional, with softer green and gold tones alternating with deeper, rich brown and orange tones.  

The backside features an interesting twist - instead of the same fabric or a plain color, the backing of the bow portion of this obi is a different brocade fabric in similar colors but a very different motif.  Perhaps the public would get a glimpse of that fabric if the bow were tied in a way that revealed it.

Excellent condition, silk, and within the typical nagoya measurements: approximately 11 feet long in total and 14 inches wide. As shown, the display length is approximately 62 inches.

See videos below for information about the different styles of obi.

The Fuller Collection - originally over 2000 pieces - was the passion and pride of Richard Fuller of Chicago, IL and Wabasha, MN. Richard served as a US Marine in post-war Japan, and there began his love of and appreciation for vintage Japanese kimono and obi. Richard saw that the mastery and artisanship of traditional Japanese textile techniques was waning - threatening to die out all together - which sparked his mission to promote this industry and preserve what he could.

Together with his wife Janith, Richard invested in thousands of kimono and obi, opening Wind Whisper West, a kimono Gallery in Wabasha in 2003. Most of the collection was sold there but several hundred pieces remain. Richard passed in 2020, and Janith has consigned the remainder of the collection to Kyoto Kimono to offer through our website. We are honored and proud to be stewarding the Fuller Collection as each piece finds its new home and continues to bring wonder and beauty to admirers around the world.

Made In (Estimated): 1960
Condition: Excellent
Fiber: Silk
Technique: Woven
Colors: Green, Orange, Gold, Brown
Motifs: Kai Awase, Shell Game, Floral


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