Miura Shibori

Miura Shibori uses the binding of small tufts of fabric, also known as looped binding. Using a hooked needle and plucking sections of the fabric, gathering and binding with cotton thread. Usually the pattern is done in rows. Traditionally, loose bound cotton twine was used. The thread is carried from section to section unknotted so the tension is relatively loose and the final piece has a softer look.  Miura is often likened to water ripples.

Miura Shibori requires patience, requiring sometimes as many as several thousand small tufts of fabric gathered and bound.miura shibori diagram

Buy Miura tools here: Slow Fiber Miura tools.

The pattern achieved depends on how tightly the fabric is bound and where it is bound.

After the thread binding, the prepared fabric is submerged in the dye bath. Traditionally indigo dye was used. As in all shibori processes, where the fabric is tightly bound, dye is unable to penetrate. Dye will take to areas not bound, and of course, the interface between the areas of tight and loose is where the magic happens, as the dye, fabric and water play together.

Sometimes the fabric is not pressed or steamed, leaving a three dimensional texture or puckering.

Miura shibori texture example

Yatara-miura Shibori - Randomly placed soft outlines of small resist-bound shapes. These patterns can be random and organic or contain imagery as in flowers or birds. The difference is the patterns are not uniform rows.

Miura shibori

Miura is a time consuming process. Covering large areas of cloth with stitched tufting is not the most efficient means of creating a monochromatic pattern on a yard of silk. Much respect for these craftspeople. Imagine the time required to gather, stitch and dye the fabric for this antique kimono.

Miura shibori kimono

Detail of miura shibori from above kimono.

Miura shibori kimono detail

Miura is a Japanese city and province, so the name miura shibori is likely from craft that was specialized in that area.

At Manifest Color we do not use anything like miura shibori. Our techniques are based on an innovative American combination of gathering and clamping using custom made stainless steel tools.