Tokyo Yuzen Dyeing

By the 18th century, Edo was the center of political power of the Shogunate and the culture and economy of this metropolis that later became Tokyo flourished.
A great deal of produce especially from western Japan consequently found its way into the city. Many dyers came with their feudal lords and settled in Edo, bringing with them their own skills and techniques. As town's folk became economically stronger, an urban culture developed. A chic yet restrained sense of taste became the norm and freehand dyeing developed at the hands of specialist artists.

Being a large city, the populous of the metropolis has always been more inclined toward fashions with a refined character. Founded on such maxims of taste, the coloring of Tokyo Tegaki Yuzen is restrained and yet is also characterized by a lightness and delicacy.


From the Edo period until today, Tokyo, formerly Edo, has always been the center of refined fashion in Japan. Tokyo Tegaki yuzen exemplifies the refined character of Edo through sophisticated designs that use a limited number of colors. Within modest boundaries, Tokyo Tegaki yuzen always conveys something fresh and cheerful in each and every design.

How to make

Tokyo Tegaki yuzen consists of three major techniques: Itome yuzen (framed drawing), Rouketsu-zome (dye-resistant wax drawing), and musen-gaki (frameless drawing). Each of the techniques combines the concepts of drawing by hand with methods of fabric dyeing and creating dye resistance. Recently Itome yuzen, which creates the impression of white threads floating upon a sea of vivid colors, is the most popular.