The philosophy of dyeing

The philosophy of dyeing


Yasuhiro Takahashi


Contents of activities


Dyeing and Weaving

Natural Dyeing

Dyeing Natural Fiber : silk , ramie , hemp , cotton , wool

Use of ashes

Historical changes of color

Kosode form









I tackled research of dyeing with natural dyes as compared with the chemical dye.

I was inspired by the large differences between the two methods of Natural Dyeing―in ancient times and modern(kusakiszome).

And that is why I started researching dyeing method using the dyeing technique manuals (about 18th century ) as a reference. And, I worked on the restoration of dyeing technique by actually dyeing against the color of the original(18th century ).

I gained the method of dyeing the most beautiful color by pulling out the individuality of the dye. In addition, I can get the color of the ideal in combination with the unique color.

For example, in the case of dyeing green by a combination of indigo and yellow dye , It is able to get a variety of green by the yellow dye difference.

In the case of Kariyasu (the scientific name is Miscanthus tincrius Hack )―dyed in gorgeous green, in the case of Obaku(the scientific name is Phellodendron amurense RUPR―dyed in fresh green.

From these results, I reached important conclusion. That is effective use of the individuality. And it is important to bring out a new individuality with a combination of excellent individuality.

I always to do as much as possible in order to dye the most beautiful color for the dye. For example, I carefully select production areas of the plant dye, I choose a part of the plant, I selected raw materials of ash for making lye, and so on. It’s a different concept in contrast with the current dyeing concept that any color is good if the color changes.

Ash was used for dyeing instead of chemicals in 18th-century.

There are a variety method for using lye. For the use of alkali―scouring agent for fiber. And, a metal salt is extracted from ash, used for a coloring agent of a dye.

And, the remaining ash after extraction of the lye is used as a glaze for ceramics.

In addition , making an organic fertilizer of the dye material after extraction. Using ash as a soil conditioner. These have resulting the circulation system to create a new value.

Sense of gratitude and human wisdom is existing inside the thing.

I want to aim the way of dyeing. It is such like a life―born, spent the time, given to a new value, and return to the soil at last.

© 2015 tananohataya