Straw Work

“Straw Work
As the cultivation of rice developed in Akita, the by-product thereof, namely rice straw, was widely used to produce items for daily use. Rice straw is an excellent material with cushioning and breathing effects, and retains moisture and heat. It was used to produce items such as ropes, sandals, clothes, carpets, containers, and ritual pieces. In addition, rice straw was a fertilizer and provided food for animals and fuel for fire. Furthermore, the ash thereof was used as a glazing agent in the production of ceramics. As such, rice straw was used in various ways. The production of straw work involves softening raw straw, as well as bundling, curling, composing, texturing, and weaving it. Today, not many people know how to produce straw work. Here, we have a collection of straw work, mostly footwear such as waraji, zori, sampe, and hedoro to remind us of the landscape of the old days in farming villages.”

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