kumo by Vicki Square
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November 2010
Worsted (9 wpi) ?
18 stitches and 24 rows = 4 inches
in stockinette stitch on larger needles
US 7 - 4.5 mm
US 6 - 4.0 mm
1617 yards (1479 m)
About 49" (124.5 cm) in circumference and about 28" (71 cm) in length.

Kanbun kosode was a kimono style of dramatic asymmetrical imagery that trailed in bold fashion from right shoulder to lower left hem. Genroku was a brief time in Japanese history (1688–1704) that represented the zenith of this visual drama. I have followed that aesthetic in this kimono with stylized cloud forms—a nature reference that spans the seasons—but I’ve taken artistic license by sweeping my diagonal in the other direction.

The blue ribbon yarn I used for this kimono is reminiscent of indigo, but of a lightened, faded shade. Indigo is a common dyestuff for the peasantry, but the glossy sheen of the ribbon yarn produces a garment suitable for royalty—a poetic paradox. The cloud imagery, worked in crochet-chain embroidery, is worked mostly on the back. While this surface design is decidedly Japanese, you may opt for a plain kimono. This yarn produces a knitted fabric of such glorious drape that it is a work of art even without embellishment.