Friday, June 16, 2006

Bonus Bone: Furoshiki

One thing I love to do, especially on a rainy day, is wrap presents. I like to use whatever I've got around the house and I always try to spiff it up a bit and make the wrapper look just as good as whatever may be inside the box. So it's rather peculiar that, until yesterday, I had never heard of furoshiki.

Furoshiki is a Japanese tradition of wrapping gifts in fabric. Often, this presentation is reserved for food items or bottles of liquor but, according to my internet searches, anything can be wrapped in fabric and made to look ever so pretty. Japanese custom states that the gift receiver should unwrap the furoshiki and fold it neatly. Then when it's time for everyone to go home, the small cloth is "returned to the giver by placing something small in it for the gift giver to take home." * What a lovely idea! So next time you're off to a dinner party, try wrapping that bottle of cheap wine in a furoshiki and you may just walk out with a dainty guest soap or your host's TV remote control.

For these reasons, I, Cardboard, declare this a Design Boner.

Instructions on wrapping a bottle of wine or sake: *

-Place the bottle in the center of your furoshiki. The cloth must be fairly small and square. I experimented with longer, scarf-like materials and there was simply too much cloth floating around.
-Bring two diagonal corners together and knot them on top of the bottle.
-Pull the other two corners toward you, around the bottle, and knot them on the face of the bottle.
-Tighten and fluff to make it look perfect.
-Kanpai! Your first furoshik

My fiesta furoshiki. I think it looks like a Japanese cactus wearing a sombrero!

* Sandy Kanemura (Ed.). Kokoro: Cherished Japanese Traditions in Hawai'i, 2004.
Lead image: Professional furoshiki


paperlily said...

Furoshiki sounds so beautiful. I like how the orignial gift is wrapped in fabric, instead of paper, as is custom here, and then given back to the giftgiver with another present. I wasn't familiar with this Japanese custom before reading your post, so thank you.

Devon said...
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Devon said...

furoshiki is really popular, at least i see many of the japanese staff members bringing their lunches in them. That's crazy organized if you ask me! Anyway, i like your but I wouldn't say it looks like the traditional japanese style.