Daily Japanese Textile

Woman’s veil (katsugi or kazuki)
Silk
Paste resist, hand painted

The veil has a long and interesting history in Japan, and can be traced back to the Heian period. Initially, its purpose was to obscure the faces of women of high birth from the gaze of others while in public, but it also served to protect against insects and dust. When the katsugi tradition died out (for all intents and purposes around 100 years ago), it was worn mostly in the less densely populated areas, for such ceremonies as weddings and funerals. Over time, it changed from being an attachment worn around a hat to being a separate accessory shaped very much like a kimono, with vestigial sleeves. Some also have a deeply cut neckline to accomodate upswept hairdos (as shown here).

Mingei, the magazine of The Japan Folk Crafts Museum, states that in the Edo period, katsugi were…

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