decorative Japanese knotting

Knots vs Fancy KnotsI had just finished going through a big stack of videos that I had found on youku, a youTube-like site in China (search for Chinese knotting:中国结 and knotting art:结艺) when my knot (매듭 in Korean) search brought me a practical knot result. That's ok. I've got nothing against practical things and it's not like that automated search turns up many results in general, but it got me to thinking, how to refine this search to produce a more focused decorative result? Taking another look at Kim Hee-Jin's maedup site and Korean Traditional Knots and started parsing down this string "한국의 전통매듭" which as a string translates to "Korea's traditional knot". Previously, I had determined that "매듭" means "knot" so that left the "전통" part. Traditional, eh?

"한국의" translates as "South Korea" and "국의" translates as "country". I should not have been surprised that none of the individual parts translated as "south" which is apparently "남쪽". 8)

This is a very long post, don't miss the video at the bottom!

eBay seller ryujapan-99 sells kimono and components (obi, kumihimo, fabric, etc). At one point the above lot of obi jime was up for auction and sadly I did not win. I wanted a closer look at that green obijime. I'm thinking that it's not actually kumihimo, but maybe a phoenix tail sinnet. Can you tell from looking? Let me know what you think!

See swathes of kumihimo in their signature showcase as part of samurai armour and armament at the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco, California. Exhibiting through September 20, 2009. (via)

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Notes: The histories of Japan clearly record the wrapping of a gift from China to the Japanese Emperor in 607CE which so impressed him with its elegance that it gave rise to the art of mizuhiki. Hanamusubi is obviously an art closely related to mizuhiki, although hanamusubi’s rise is closely tied to the introduction of Buddhism (in the 6th century, gaining mass acceptance closer to the 8th century)

Text: Chinese gift to the Japanese Emperor in 607CE gives rise to the arts of mizuhiki and hanamusubi.