A flock of plovers take flight across this light cotton yukata, or summer kimono.
The Japanese name for plover is ‘chidori’, which also means one thousand birds. Chi means 1000, and dori is birds. We haven’t counted the plovers on this garment, but even though there probably aren’t one thousand birds on it, there was still a lot of work done in this shibori tie-died fabric. The area of cloth forming each bird was wrapped in thread to achieve the spider-like lines in the design.
This yukata is from the early Showa period (1926 to 1989) , and is from the Narumi Arimatsu region, which is still a center for traditional shibori dyeing in Japan. This yukata was dyed with ukon (turmeric) to achieve the beautiful golden yellow color.
The yukata is entirely hand sewn. The shoulder area is lined with a loosely woven white cotton, and the same fabric was used to make a seat lining. The garment measures 55 inches from the top of the collar down to the bottom of the hem at the center back, and 50 inches from sleeve tip to sleeve tip across the top of the shoulders. The side seams are generous, so that the yukata could be made larger if desired.
This yukata is in excellent condition with no tears, holes or stains.