Twelve Days of Kitsune
- The First Day of Kitsune – a folk tale
- The Second Day of Kitsune — Shift Your Shape with a Kitsune Costume
- The Third Day of Kitsune – Wordless Wednesday kitsune images
- The Fourth Day of Kitsune – the Brief History and Use of Chopsticks
- The Fifth Day of Kitsune — Dining with the Daimyou
- The Sixth Day of Kitsune — On Kimono & Japanese Clothing
- The Seventh Day of Kitsune – Where Are They Now? Part 1
- The Eighth Day of Kitsune – Where Are They Now? Part 2
- The Ninth Day of Kitsune — A Period Playlist
- The Tenth Day of Kitsune — Using Furoshiki to Wrap Gifts
- The Eleventh Day of Kitsune – the Kitsune Code of Conduct
- The Twelfth Day of Kitsune – Mizuhiki
Arriving early to give a panel on Japanese folklore, I found Emilia (author of our guest post on kimono) teaching a workshop on tying mizuhiki. A perfect follow-up to the post on furoshiki; you can now decorate your traditionally-wrapped packages as well!
What is mizuhiki?
Mizuhiki is an art of decorative knot-tying. This style dates to the early Edo period — well after the time of Kitsune-Tsuki, but an important part of Japanese culture today. But in earlier times, colored hemp cord was used to bind poetry books and gift boxes, and Kaede-dono or Tsurugu-sama might well have tied such things.
Now cords are made of rice paper, usually brightly colored, and they are a traditional and elegant way of decorating gifts.
Choose mizuhiki cord according to color and finish; foil and silk varieties are available. Knots can be fairly simple or very complex!
My Attempt at Misuhiki
Emilia was kind enough to talk me though a basic mizuhiki knot, and I had it recorded to share with you — but unfortunately the video file was corrupted, to my great frustration! I’ve tried two different recovery software, without luck.
Still, I do have some photos.
These cords are foil-wrapped. Isn’t this lovely?
This type of knot is traditionally attached to packaged with the ends (neatly snipped) pointing up. Now you’re ready to show off on all your gifts!
Thank you for touring these past 12 days with your kitsune guide. I hope you enjoyed it and learned something fun or useful.
Merry Christmas to all! Peace on Earth, good will to all mankind!
|Practice mizuhiki and other Japanese gift-giving arts with this beautifully-illustrated book.