Kaga Yuzen

Kaga Yuzen
Famed Miyazaki Yuzensai (1650-1736) introduced Kaga Yuzen to Kanazawa during the Edo-era. The technique for making Kaga Yuzen is quite complicated.

First, a rough sketch is made on the material using the juice of a spiderwort flower; the sketch looks like stitches of blue thread. Next, the sketch is traced with a special paste made from glutinous rice. Then the space surrounded by the paste is painted. The design is purposefully made to look like it has been worm-eaten to give it a sense of quiet elegance known as wabisabi in Japanese. The five basic colors used in Kaga Yuzen are red, indigo, dark yellow, green, and ancient purple (black). Another special feature of Kaga Yuzen is that when a kimono dyed using this technique is spread out it forms a continuous scene from one sleeve to the other. It is used primarily on kimono, but also on scarves and other smaller, more affordable items.