We are honored to share the beauty and important history of these traditional Ainu Robes with you! Ainu, an indigenous people of Japan, mainly reside in Hokkaido (the Northern island of Japan) , and some parts of the Kuril Islands, and Sakhalin.
It was only 13 years ago that the Ainu finally gained Japanese parliamentary recognition as a people with a "distinct language, religion, and culture." The long history of oppression and continued discrimination against the Ainu people has led to the diminishment of Ainu tradition and culture. With less than 20,000 Ainu people living in Hokkaido, the work to keep this culture alive has become a severe priority for this community.
In the Ainu community, these robes function as protection not only from nature and weather but also to prevent evil spirits from entering the body - trapping them within the intricate maze-like designs embroidered on their attire. Historically, Ainu wove their cloth from fiber derived of tree bark - using the earth as a primary resource for their textiles.
We hope to further bring recognition to this vibrant culture and their incredible textile work with this collection of Ainu Robes from Hokkaido, Japan. In order to further support this community we have vowed to donate 10% of our makings from these robes to the Ainu Association of Hokkaido here
To find more information about this indigenous community of Japan, please read our blog post here
This specific Vintage Ainu robe is unique in that it is made partly out of tree bark from Manchurian Elms and Japanese Limes. It is a traditional craft in which threads are spun from tree bark, and woven to fabric to make durable clothing. This robe is also made out of hemp which historically was the only textile material the Ainu community was able to cultivate as the Northern part of Japan's soil was not ideal for cotton cultivation.
Learn more about the Ainu culture here
Carefully selected and imported from Japan.
- Ainu Inspired Jacket
- Product #: AR01
- Code: NWS
- Please note that since this jacket is used, there may be flaws or stains
Size (flat measurements)
Sleeve Length: 13"
Sleeve Opening: 13"