Just same as weaver in olden times, Gramma Ashiwa also cannot use beautiful
kimono fabrics in clover. To weave a sakiori fabric (13 3/4" x 244"
) , three full kimono are needed. If she uses kimono in very good conditions
for her sakiori fabric, the price will be more expensive. So she selects
carefully the materials - well worn, and impossible to wear, but still
good condition as material, and has good quality of weaving and dyeing.
Her spirits is just same as the weaver in olden times.
She cuts in the hem of fabrics with nigiri-basami, and tears with hands
at a burst. At the another hem, she stops tearing, and tears from the hem
again. So the fabrics becomes a long strip with return parts. She says
the return parts are not even, but they give good texture to the fabrics.
For warp, she uses 324 threads. She sends it to a dyer in San'in district.
She says that dyeing the warp with natural ai is essential for her works,
although it costs much. She washed the threads several times, and wait
its ai color become natural.
To weave Oshima brown color ones, she must select materials more carefully.
If she weave it with genuine Oshima tsumugi only, its cost will be very
expensive. So she selects a main Oshima tsumugi fabric, and selects more
fabrics for blending. She says sometimes they are brown meisen fabrics
and 'gasu'( rayon fabric very similar to Oshima). Her careful and wise
selection of fabrics makes her work as if it was all woven with Oshima
Tsumugi - it has very soft silk touch, and beautiful Oshima brown colors.
She weaves on thread by one thread elaborately. To get the beautiful color gradation and accent, she carefully select weft strips. Even if she use only ai color fabrics, strips blend will make texture and color different.