The Costume Museum Kyoto Japan Costume History in Japan
The Edo Period  
163 - Small bags for ladies.

The Costume Museum Kyoto Japan
The Costume Museum Kyoto Japan
The Costume Museum Kyoto Japan
The Costume Museum Kyoto Japan
The Costume Museum Kyoto Japan
The "fukuro-mono", small bags; the materials are comprehensive handicraft containing a fiber, not only leather but metal, or ivory. In the Kojiki account of the legend of Prince Yamatotakeru, when he was ordered by the emperor on a subjugation campaign against the Ezo in northeastern Japan, a "hiuchi-bukuro", a bag for tools to make a fire, was attached to the root of a "tachi", a long sword, and was carried. In the second year of Yoro period under Emperor Gansho's rule, the law of the ranking by bags was enacted. Bags are divided roughly into two types; one is the type to be worn or attached to the body and the other type is to be used as a container of clothes and tools. There are three types of containers:
1) The containers for clothes: such as a "uwazashi-bukuro" bag and a "tonoi-bukuro" bag.
2) The containers for accessaries; such as a scent bag and a charm bag.
3) The containers for furnishing: such as cases of musical instrument, arms, a tea set, and document.
The followings are the types of bags to be worn with clothes:
[A] The type to be attached to the waist.
[B] The type to be put into the bosom.
[C] The type to be hung by hand.
It introduces focusing on small bags for women especially. In the middle of Edo era, when the style of the dress which makes a kimono with short sleeves in use is completed, simultaneously the small bags attached to the body came to have an extensive use. The work which makes a thing also came to be considered to be the independent occupation. The items for carrying at the waist: a "kinchaku" accessories bag, an "inroh" accessories container, a "yakuroh (=pillbox)", an "omamori-bukuro" talisman bag, a "hayamichi" Wallet, a "zeni-ire" wallet, a "sage-tabako-ire" cigarrette case, etc. There are many items as regard to the small bags to keep in the kimono: a "dohran" leather bag, a "kaishi" holded paper, an "uta-bukuro", a Japanese poem draft bag, a "fukusa" wrapping sheet, a "kami-basami" paper clip, a "donburi" large-size bag, a "sun-bukuro" sword bag, a "saifu" wallet, a "tamoto-otoshi" bag, a "kami-ire" case, a "komono-ire" bag, a "kaichu-tabako-ire" cigarrette case; after the Meiji era, a "gamaguchi" wallet and a "meishi-ire" business card case were made. The paper container called the "hakoseko" wallet, which was developed from the paper clip, is one of the main item of the small bags to carry in the bosom. The mirror was put into this, or it was inserted into the paper clip. Since the middle of Edo era or later, regarding the small bags which were used by women, many outstanding handicrafts of which materials are dyed fabrics, leather, ivory and metal, have been produced. The excellent small bags for women which were made during the time from the last stage of the Edo period to the Meiji era are shown on this page.