ext_51796: (asoiaf_sansa_speaks)
[identity profile] reynardine.livejournal.com
A question was asked on the SCA Japanese Facebook page: "Padded Uchigi. Is this just, like, quilted? fluffy? Essentially really thick interfacing? I assume they used silk, but I can't envision what the final product looks like."

My answer:

真綿 (mawata) is low-quality silk, nowadays mostly used for making handkerchiefs, but was used for padding on winter garments. This page shows what it looks like: http://www.wildfibres.co.uk/html/mulberry_silk.html

"Was it just stuffed in or how did it stay in place?"

John Marshall actually has a chapter about it in his _Make Your Own Japanese Clothes_, where he discusses the traditional method and then a more modern method better suited towards modern washing using easier to find material (since his book IS about modern clothes). Mawata is sticky, so you basically layer it in place. This webpage shows the process for silk handkerchiefs--it is just on a larger scale for garments. http://www.wormspit.com/mawatas.htm

Marshall, John. Make Your Own Japanese Clothes (Tokyo; Kodansha International, 2013 reprint) 978-1568364933. Originally printed in 1988, ISBN 087011865X.
ext_51796: (akikawa_nikki)
[identity profile] reynardine.livejournal.com
I found this resource last year and thought I'd linked it here, but I guess I only had the link on Facebook.

Kanagawa University in Yokohama, Japan has done a lot of work on Nonwritten Cultural Materials. As part of a project, they put together a focus group which translated an important Japanese-language resource that identified daily items as presented in Emaki scrolls.

So far, 3 volumes of 5 have been translated. Volumes 1 and 3 are available, FOR FREE and PERFECTLY LEGALLY, as PDFs online. For some reason, Volume 2 was not put online, but is available in the US via Inter-Library Loan. Here are the links to the other two:

Volume 1: http://www.himoji.jp/jp/popup/publication/seika_010101.html
Volume 1 Glossary: http://www.himoji.jp/jp/popup/publication/seika_010102.html

Volume 3 and its glossary can be found at this page (they are pop-up links, so no direct linking!)

ext_51796: (research_sunako)
[identity profile] reynardine.livejournal.com
Here is a link to my Queen's Prize Entry for 2016. Format is PDF.

Woman wearing a sode-zukin from the NHK taiga drama "Yoshitsune".

ext_51796: (X-Subaru)
[identity profile] reynardine.livejournal.com
Battling con crud from Worldcon this week. I'm supposed to be doing a translation for someone, but my brain is so fuzzy that I haven't been able to concentrate, so I've been sewing on part of my Queen's Prize Project, which is on zukin (hoods). I'm doing the sode-zukin (which is the wimple kind of zukin that I did for that paper I wrote years ago), the zukin from The Maple Viewers (and yes, what those ladies are wearing ARE zukin--I've found modern variants), a mousu (which looks like a sode-zukin, but are larger) and if I have time, a kato no kesa 裏頭(か[くわ]とう)の袈裟(けさ), which is what the sohei warrior monks wore. The kanji translates as "a kesa worn on the head". Kesa is a Buddhist religious garment usually worn over kimono as a kind of apron.


Sode-zukin example from the NHK taiga drama Fuurin Kazan.

I'm really excited about this last one--I kept wondering why I would sometimes see seam lines on what usually looks like just a rectangular white cloth tied around the head. It's a kesa! And kesa are usually sewn with what is called the rice-field pattern. And THAT explains the seam lines!


From the NHK Drama Yoshitsune, the Warrior Monk Benkei is wearing a Kato no Kesa.

The only thing is I will have to sew like the wind to get the thing done in time and with the pattern, that's going to be tricky. Plus I still have to write up the information, in a simple format since this is not a literary entry. But I still have almost 3 weeks. I might skip the mousu (which I don't have as much info about, just an entry from the Japanese Costume Museum) and concentrate on the kato no kesa instead.

Ingibiorg, who also does Japanese poetry here in Calontir, did a poetry exchange with me this summer and asked if she could enter it as an A&S entry for Cattle Raids (an event up in Lincoln, Nebraska where she lives). We each wrote up explanations about our respective poems and how we took elements from each other in the exchange. I think she was going to present the poems on some marbled paper or something? Anyway, no word as to how that turned out. I hope she got some good feedback, since most people tend to ignore poetry entries.
ext_51796: (read_sei)
[identity profile] reynardine.livejournal.com
I'm taking a course on Rare Japanese Books via Futurelearn. It's a lot more intensive than I had originally thought, but also a LOT of good information. I have a book on Japanese bookbinding that shows how some of this is done, but it was incredibly useful to see videos of these various types of books and how they work.
ext_51796: (write_japan)
[identity profile] reynardine.livejournal.com
This is a good article on how Japanese surnames evolved. It's a big long and heavy on jargon (the site is one about learning Japanese), but well worth a read.

The article can be found here on Tofugu.
ext_51796: (read_sei)
[identity profile] reynardine.livejournal.com
Looked this up to answer a question about imayo songs on the SCA:Japanese FB page. Noting here for future reference:

Yung-Hee, Kim Kwon. Songs to Make the Dust Dance: The Ryojin hisho of Twelfth-Century Japan (Berkeley, Univ. of California Press, 1994) ISBN: 9780520080669 Link is to LEGAL electronic copy of full book. (via Lisa Joseph/Mistress Saionji no Hana)

Konishi, Jin'inchi _A History of Japanese Literature, Volume 2: The Early Middle Ages_ (edited by Earl Miner, trans by Nicholas Teele) (Princeton, NJ; Princeton University Press, 1986) ISBN 978-0691101774 has some good discussion on the subject. Konishi had some interest in the subject and devotes a chapter to it. Note--be sure and get the SECOND volume. The first one just has a few lines on imayo, and while the third does has some bits and pieces on it, the 2nd volume is where most of the information is.

Malm, William _Japanese Music and Musical Instruments_ (Tokyo; Tuttle Publishing, 1990) ISBN 978-0804816489 devotes a little time to the subject and is also just good reading about Japanese musical structure anyway, although I suspect he got his imayo info from Konishi's work? Neither of these works are recent, however.

Miller, Stephen D. _The Wind from Vulture Peak: The Buddhification of Japanese Waka in the Heian Period_ (New York, Cornell East Asia Program, 2013) ISBN 978-1933947662 has some translated imayo and looks some at structure.

I found some cites on a JSTOR search--mostly articles by Yung-Hee Kim Kwon (who wrote _Songs to Make the Dust Dance_ that Lisa Joseph already mentioned), but there were two articles that looked like they might have be of interest to you based on conversations we've had in person (this was to the original poster, who lives here in Calontir): Meeks, Lori. 2011. “The Disappearing Medium: Reassessing the Place of miko in the Religious Landscape of Premodern Japan”. History of Religions 50 (3). University of Chicago Press: 208–60. doi:10.1086/656611.

Goodwin, Janet R.. 2000. “Shadows of Transgression: Heian and Kamakura Constructions of Prostitution”. Monumenta Nipponica 55 (3). Sophia University: 327–68.

Online article about a lecture in 2015 by Dr. Elizabeth Markham, who is currently researching imayo Songs of Peace: On Japanese Imayo of the 12th Century.
ext_51796: (write_shodo)
[identity profile] reynardine.livejournal.com
My shodo teacher Tony Skeen just published a couple of reference books that will help those looking to make inkan (seals). Both are intended to be used in tandem with the New Nelson's Japanese-English Character Dictionary.

The first volume is to help people sound-out their (non-Japanese) names in Kanji. There are choices--you can go by meaning, but then the pronunciation will be completely different, or you can go by pronunciation and find comparable kanji--THEN you have to watch for the meaning and also double-check to make sure it doesn't have some slang meaning in Japanese that might be embarrassing. So this first volume is a list of kanji by sound, in English alpha-order. Choosing Kanji for Use on a Seal Stone

The second volume has brushed tensho-script examples of the kanji from the first volume, both as normal and also in reverse (which is how you would carve it to make a seal). As far as I know, there is no other English-language resource on tensho-script that is this detailed. Tensho Kanji for Making a Seal Stone

Both of these are meant to be used in tandem with the New Nelson's Japanese/English Character Dictionary. Nelson's is one of the best J/E Kanji Dictionaries available. Here is the Goodreads link to it. They have it listed new on Amazon for $44 dollars, but seriously, shop around. I found mine new on Ebay for $18, and sometimes you can find it for even less! The New Nelson Japanese-English Character Dictionary. NOTE: Be sure and get the latest version, so the numbers match up. Also, it's much larger than the original.

I've been studying shodo with Tony Skeen for over a year now. He's a certified instructor through Nihon Shuji Kyoiku Zaidan and has been practicing shodo for over 20 years. The books are pricey, but he's not making much of a profit--the cost is mainly due to the books being self-published on small print runs.

He let me look at the proofs when he was working on the book and the books are very to-the-point. He just wants to make it easier for people to make better inkan. The online sites that offer to create tensho often use a computer font. These are HAND BRUSHED examples.


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Akikawa Nikki

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