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This was an amazing find. This is from the "昭和" "showa period". The "showa" period is from 1926-1989. This is called "型紙" or "katagami". These are arrows that Japanese people believe these are lucky charms from long time ago ( They believe that arrows protect people from monsters and bad luck and decorate them near home entrance) .

Katagami are made of multiple layers of thin mulberry paper which are bonded with a glue extracted from persimmon, which makes a strong flexible brown coloured paper.

This katagami was used for "katazome" which is the method of dyeing fabrics (kimonos) using a stencil and a resist paste. The resist paste was made with rice flour and when dyed, the dye didn't adhere to the areas covered with the paste. It was an inexpensive way to make all-over patterns similar to a woven cloth.

For more of our vintage stencils please click here
j.Webster commented on March 21, 2012 7:28am
very cool!
Gréta Thórsdóttir commented on March 21, 2012 1:10pm