Watabun 渡文

There is a Nishijin brocade company called Watabun in Kyoto.

 The history of the Watabun company

Bunshiti Watanabe (渡邉文七) was born in Kyoto in 1882.He devoted himself to the work of making Obi, the sash of  a kimono, and established the Watanabe Bunshiti weaving company (渡邉文七機業店) in 1906. It became a weaving company of middle-standing in 1936.

He contributed to the industry development as the vice chief president of Nishijin brocade association. The company made new designs of Obi and won many prizes at exhibitions.

Watabun’s main items

Meibutsugire 名物裂





Youbinishiki 用美錦





Sharezomekouketsu 洒落染纐纈





Kouketsu ST 纐纈ST










Namigoromo 波衣





Watabun -Yasaka plant

Watabun is the one of the top ranking companies now, and they have three factories in Japan. One of those factories has been in Yasaka Cho, Hamada City since 1978. There are about 30 manually powered looms in this factory that make beautiful Obi.

In the Yasaka plant

After many days of working, an employee just finished making a three-meter Obi during the day of our visit.

Weaving “Watabun (渡文)”

After the last check, the Obi will be sent to Kyoto and be sold to  customers.

Kaori Y


2 Responses to Watabun 渡文

  1. Sally Ong says:

    I am Sally from Penang, Malaysia. I bought a lot of used obi and washed them. every each of the obi I washed has colour bleeding (colour run). how do I stop the colour from bleeding?

    • Hi, Sally. I am no expert on obi, but kimono etc. are generally dry-cleaned by experts, rather than washed. Thin cotton summer kimono (yukata) can go in the washing machine, but I would not put an expensive obi in water. I hope your obi are not too badly damaged.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s