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Object Timeline

1920

  • Work on this object ended.

1976

  • We acquired this object.

2013

2014

2021

  • You found it!

Katagami, Arrow Design, late 19th–early 20th century

This is a Katagami. It is dated late 19th–early 20th century and we acquired it in 1976. Its medium is mulberry paper (kozo washi) treated with fermented persimmon tannin (kakishibu), and silk threads (itoire). It is a part of the Drawings, Prints, and Graphic Design department.

Katagami, which translates as “pattern paper,” is a stencil used to print repeating patterns on fabric. Since Japanese garments were traditionally made without a shoulder seam, the two arrows pointing in opposite directions would have produced a fluid repeat on the front and back of the garment.

This object was donated by Helen Snyder. It is credited Gift of Helen Snyder.

Our curators have highlighted 11 objects that are related to this one. Here are three of them, selected at random:

Its dimensions are

46.7 x 34 cm (18 3/8 x 13 3/8 in.) Mat: 71.1 x 55.9 cm (28 x 22 in.)

Cite this object as

Katagami, Arrow Design, late 19th–early 20th century; Japan; mulberry paper (kozo washi) treated with fermented persimmon tannin (kakishibu), and silk threads (itoire); 46.7 x 34 cm (18 3/8 x 13 3/8 in.) Mat: 71.1 x 55.9 cm (28 x 22 in.); Gift of Helen Snyder; 1976-103-289

We have 1 video that features Katagami, Arrow Design, late 19th–early 20th century.

Katagami & Katazome Demonstration

Master craftsmen from Japan demonstrate traditional techniques for hand-cutting paper stencils (katagami) and resist-dying silk (katazome). This video condenses a multi-hour process into under two...

This object was previously on display as a part of the exhibition Making Design.

This image is in the public domain (free of copyright restrictions). You can copy, modify, and distribute this work without contacting the Smithsonian. For more information, visit the Smithsonian’s Terms of Use page.

If you would like to cite this object in a Wikipedia article please use the following template:

<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url=https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18490057/ |title=Katagami, Arrow Design, late 19th–early 20th century |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=25 September 2021 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>