Nagaita chūgata: stenciling both sides of the cloth
The design here shows chrysanthemum flowers swirling in
eddies of flowing water. The large-scale pattern typifies yukata designs. Details on the dyeing technique will be explained
later, but for nagaita chūgata paste
is applied through the stencil matching up the design on both sides of the
cloth. In this way, the dye cannot penetrate the areas of the cloth caught
between the paste layers, resulting in the white standing out clearly against
the dyed area.
In the Edo
period after the spread of cotton cultivation and also the rise of public baths
in the cities, nagaita chūgata yukata became
common as bathrobes, as relaxed summer wear, and as festival raiment. The chic
designs with their large pictorial motifs dyed in white and blue were the great
love of the Edo dandies.