Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Hari Kuyo - February 8, 2010

Today is Hari Kuyo or The Festival of the Broken Needles in Japan. Once a year on February 8th, people, mainly women and in particular needleworkers and those in the textile industry gather at Buddhist temples to pay homage to their needles and pins. Alters are laid out with various gifts of thanksgiving and a container of tofu is set up so that people can bury their broken and bent needles in thanks for their service and to bring good luck to their stitching endeavours in the coming year. Traditionally women used to wear their best kimonos to this ceremony but this has taken a back seat to more contemporary dress. However, many young apprentices of needlework schools and textile houses are attempting to bring back this tradition and in fact, there is a renewed interest in general by the younger Japanese generation in the kimono and in these traditions.
To read further about Hari Kuyo and to see some beautiful color pictures of this ceremony, click on the links below: