Hon Shiozawa, also known as Shiozawa Omeshi, is produced in Uonuma area in Niigata prefecture, and one of traditional textile in the region likewise Echigo Johu, Shiozawa Tsumugi, and Natsu Shiozawa. For the comfort and likeable texture, Hon Shiozwa has been loved broadly.
The beginning dates back to about 350 years ago, after the beginning of Edo period (1603-1867) when Hori Jiro Masatoshi, who was a samurai in Harima Akasi domain, created crepe fabric with “Shibo”, unevenness of the surface of texture. Jiro Masatoshi spread the Shibo technique for linen fabric to weavers around current Niigata area, and some adopted it to silk. Then Hon Shiozawa was born.
The cold winter weather in Uonuma area is just suitable to dry such clothes is one reason that creped fabric is largely produced in this area. But another reason is that sericulture has established as the side job for the winter.
To create Shibo, first of all, the weft is yarned hardly. After woven, the yarned weft make unevenness on the surface of the fabric, but when the fabric is soaked and rubbed in warm water, it loosen. After dried, the unevenness of the surface becomes soften and causes unique nuance and smooth touch.
The color and patterns such as small Juji Gasuri, a bit bigger crosses than Kagasuri, and Kikko Gasuri, a combination of hexagons are also gentle and sophisticated so that everyday use doesn’t make you bored. Hon
Shiozawa was designated as Traditional Craft by METI (Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry) in 1976.