From Furoshiki to Noragi

By Michael Andersen November 15


One of the best parts of working at Tanner Goods is the fact that, even though we have a range of different interests, there are certain passions we all share:  every person in our crew values high-quality materials, craftsmanship, and goods with a story to tell.  This common mindset extends beyond the workshop, and it’s been a big help for me to be able to share ideas with and get advice from the team as I work on a little personal sewing project.

In search of a cotton fabric that would be thick enough for a light jacket, but light enough to use as a layer (as styled by Hiroki Nakamura of Visvim fame), I found this indigo-dyed, hand-embroidered furoshiki (Japanese carrying cloth) at Cargo here in Portland.  It was part of a fabric lot dating around 1930, making it about 80 years old, and the kind ladies at the shop threw in a few extra scraps from the bundle so I could do much-needed period-appropriate repairs as well.  



While the cloth probably spent much of its early life doing the fabric equivalent of hard labor, it’s very beautiful, and it’s earned a leisurely retirement.  I plan to turn it into a noragi for myself, sewn with the same kind of sashiko needle and thread that assembled it long ago.


I’ll keep you updated on how it turns out – wish me luck!