Experience the world of textiles in Nishijin, Kyoto

in Apr 19, 2022

A thread manipulator that spins with a click, click, click.

One morning, I visited a weaver's workshop in Nishijin, Kyoto.

As soon as you step into the workshop, you will find yourself in a somewhat nostalgic space.

I felt nostalgic, perhaps because of the historic structure of the building, but there were days when I could feel the breeze blowing through the building.

This is a space called the eel bed seen in Kyoto's townhouses, which extends deep into the back.

Although it is deep, it is well-lighted and well-ventilated so that it does not feel dark.

It's a space that will make you feel like you've traveled back in time, giving you the feeling of being at your grandparents' house.


I can hear unfamiliar but pleasant rhythms coming from everywhere.

In the workshop, where the warm sunlight shines through, numerous looms were operating, making a steady rhythm as they clattered and clattered.


Each loom weaves extremely colorful fabrics, but no two looms have the same pattern.

The delicate silk threads sparkle in the sunlight and sway gently in the wind, and just looking at them makes me feel like I'm calming down.

You can see the highly skilled weavers moving about, re-splicing threads and making minute adjustments.

There are many looms in operation and it looks like they are busy, but the number of skilled weavers is decreasing, making it difficult to pass on Nishijin-ori techniques.

That's no wonder; it takes anywhere from a few years to 10 years for a weaver to become a full-fledged weaver. He connects such thin threads without making mistakes, changes colors, and if something breaks midway through, he repairs it as well. It's all work that requires patience, skill, and concentration.


Each weaving is carefully watched over, and when you watch the fabric being woven slowly and slowly, it is so delicate that it will take your breath away.

The orimoto-san told me that each silk thread is thinner than a human hair, and because these thin threads are woven densely, it is possible to create detailed patterns.


Photofab is also a service that was made possible by the technology that weaves this high-density, delicate silk thread, making it possible to weave photographs into silk fabric.

The luster and shadows express the fur of various types of creatures.

The daunting task of capturing the details in detail was carried out in the workshop. The woven fabric changes its sparkle as you change the angle, making you wonder if the adorable creatures there have just moved. It was so clear that I thought.


A favorite photo that you took with love.

There, a scene was quietly unfolding where it was being reborn into traditional Nishijin-ori, receiving the skill and warm attention of many people.