Shifu, Shiroishi Shifu, 白石紙布（しろいししふ)
Shifu (clothing woven with washi yarns)
Washi paper is cut into long, narrow ribbon-like strips which are twisted on a spinning wheel, then woven like silk or cotton, traditionally on a handloom. For the warp and the weft of this paper fabric, there are cases in which silk or cotton is used for the warp but when woven there is little difference from ordinary cloth. Paper fabric has the drawback of tearing when it becomes wet in the rain but paper fabric can be laundered. Its tradition still remains, although on a limited scale now, as high-class clothing. Paper yarns give a fabric a very nice dry and crispy hand
1. Produced in Shiroishi City, Miyagi Prefecture.
2.Characteristics: Woven on a loom with silk warp and weft of paper threads produced by twisting cut up handmade paper. Well ventilated, light and soft, and durable.
3. Uses: Once widely used for summer cloth. Today, for pouches and small items.
4. History: Good quality paper was produced in this district in the Edo-era. The cloths were first made as a side business by the warrior class. The quality was improved and demand increased since the fabric became one of the items used as gifts to the Shogun. With the end of the feudal system at the Meiji Restoration (1868) the production came to an end. A Chutaro Sato revived the production and the fabric became a useful substitute to meet the lack of textile in the years of WWII.