“Kyo-beni silk” is the workshop owned by a kimono artist using safflower with 20 years experience.
It’s just a 1 minute walk from Waratenjin shrine, and 7-8 minutes walk from Kinkakuji (Golden pavilion).
She offers the experience of dyeing the handkerchief by safflower having tea and sweets made from safflowers.
What’s “Kyoto safflower”?
Talking about safflower, many people says it’s the ingredient of the food oil, but actually, they had been used for lipsticks or the ingredient for dyeing kimono long time.
Surprisingly, it had been used for kimono since 1000 year ago. Ladies in the imperial palace in those days changed the color of their kimono according to the season because it had been thought that the color of the kimono represents the knowledge of how beautiful she is. Safflowers were the precious ingredient to make pale pink color.
After we imported synthetic dye from overseas, the natural dyeing by safflowers gradually disappeared, but the color of the natural dyeing is very unique. We can’t make its original color by the synthetic dye.
Now the largest field of safflowers for kimono is in Yamagata prefecture, north of Japan, but Kyoto is also trying to keep this wonderful dyeing technique.
Apple farm in Yosano-cho Kyoto prefecture is growing the field of safflower now. Rui Koda, the owner of “Kyo beni silk” is the leader of this big project. They are not only making the clothes dyed by safflower, but also offer the special meal or Japanese sweets using the healthy fresh leaves of safflowers.
Really interesting project!
2 courses of Japanese dyeing by safflowers!
A： Japanese dying by safflowers with special tea & sweets （６０min）
Miss.Koda is not only the artist of safflower kimono, but also the producer of safflower.
In this course, you can have tea & sweets made from safflowers, and try dyeing a handkerchief by safflowers. She will explain about the culture and history of safflowers also.
At last, she will play Japanese drum (Taiko) in the class. Everything is really unique experience in Kyoto.
Price： 2500 yen/person （you can reserve from 2 people）
B：Japanese dyeing by safflowers with special sushi roll（９０min）
In this course B, the special sushi roll is included in addition to tea & sweets.
The color of the ingredient of the sushi represents Genji tale written by women novelist over 1000 years ago.
As the colors of the kimono had signified Japanese seasons, she and a sushi master are trying to make sushi like kimono colors.
Miss.Koda will teach you much detail about safflowers.
Price：4500 yen/person（you can reserve from 2 people.）
38-1 Sakuragi-cho Hirano Kita-ku Kyoto