The Origins of Furoshiki – Quality Fabric Gift Wrapping

During a recent search for sustainable wedding gifts, I came across the most beautiful gift wrapping I’d ever seen. It didn’t matter to me what was inside this most exquisite little package, as it was the wrapping that had really caught my eye. Fast forward a couple of months and I got an email from Cathy introducing herself and her furoshiki company, Zusetsu. I know so many of you will love not only the look, but also the history, and opportunity to create modern, sustainable family tradition, so I asked Cathy to tell us more about her, the company and of course the beauty that is furoshiki.

 

Meet the Zusetsu team, Cathy and Yukki!Hello, we’re Cathy and Yukki from Zusetsu, and we’re thrilled to be invited by Michelle to introduce you to our beautiful wedding furoshiki gift wrapping! 

We are the largest supplier of traditional, authentic Japanese furoshiki in the UK, and we’re based in the beautiful Cotswold town of Chipping Campden.

Furoshiki originated as a very special cloth for the wrapping of the treasures of the Japanese Imperial Court, in a city just outside Kyoto over a thousand years ago.  

Our Kyoto furoshiki are inspired by the skills that have been handed down through generations, and that have their beginnings with the artisans who supplied magnificent textiles to the Kyoto Court, in an era when the perfection of beauty is unrivalled. 

Furoshiki are an integral part of Japanese wrapping culture, very much aligned with elegant kimono. Many of our furoshiki designs are inspired by kimono patterns and have symbolic meanings that impart good wishes for your special occasion.

 

Sustainable Wedding Furoshiki, their history and tradition

Furoshiki are increasing in popularity as many of us are reacting to the sea of plastic and waste in daily life. We want something simpler to wrap our items in, something that is beautiful and reusable and something that means something. 

Instead of using unrecyclable paper and plastic tape to wrap your wedding gifts and table favours, why not create a stunning table setting with the elegance of our furoshiki.  

Furoshiki create an attractive focal piece to your wedding table settings and are a unique way to wrap table favours, bridal party and wedding gifts.

A gift wrapped in a furoshiki Flower Wrap

Furoshiki create wonderful keepsakes as they absorb the memory of your beautiful day. Your friends and family can keep the furoshiki that wrapped their wedding table favour or gift as a special memento. 

As you move forward as a married couple, your wedding furoshiki that wrapped your wedding presents can become a part of your new celebrations as you wrap with them again, on special occasions such as your anniversary and first Christmas. In this way your wedding furoshiki becomes a new part of your family traditions. 

Furoshiki are long-lasting, which is better for the environment. They are reusable and grow softer as they are gently hand-washed and wrapped with again and again. 

In Japan, a bride would be gifted a furoshiki in which to wrap her wedding trousseau and she would continue to use her furoshiki throughout her married life, using it to wrap gifts and keepsakes to take with her when she travelled back to her family home.

 

Creating our own furoshiki design

Our Snowflower furoshiki

Cathy is a children’s book illustrator with many years’ experience of illustrating books, both in the UK and around the world. “We love the high quality of the furoshiki print and textiles that we stock in store and as we learned more about the processes we were keen to design our first Zusetsu furoshiki.”

It was January when Cathy visited Kyoto to establish Zusetsu. She learned to fold and tie furoshiki in the city and met with furoshiki companies. One Sunday morning she stood in the Imperial Palace Gardens as tiny flakes of snow began to fall, breathing in the early sweet scent of the first plum blossoms. We wanted our first furoshiki to capture that moment. 

Plum blossoms covered with snow have long been regarded as exquisitely beautiful in Kyoto: the Heian-era diarist Sei Shonagon, lady to the Empress Teishi, describes them in her list of ‘Elegant Things’. 

We also have a very beloved cherry orchard that we walk to across the fields from our home in the Cotswolds and every winter we look forward to the trees flowering in the Spring. The white flowering trees look like snow, especially as the petals scatter to the ground.

Yukki with a beautiful small flowergirl furoshiki confetti ring bag

We designed our furoshiki to look especially elegant as a wedding table favour gift-wrapping; for  wrapping bridal party gifts and wedding presents; and for creating little confetti furoshiki ring bags for flowergirls and bridesmaids. 

The snow white background, and the understated simplicity of the cherry blossom design combines with the skill and artistry of the Kyoto craftspeople, to create a memento truly unique, that creates a beautiful table focal piece. It is screen-printed by hand in Kyoto, and so each furoshiki is an individual piece of art. 

The thought behind all of these furoshiki is that they will be absorbed into the family after the ceremony and become well-loved and well-used gift-wraps for many years to come.

 

Sustainable solutions for your wedding day special touches

Our pretty Snowflower furoshiki

We would love to create elegant furoshiki wraps and flowergirl confetti ring-bags for your special day.  We offer furoshiki wrapping services for your wedding table favours, bridal party gifts and wedding  presents and your flowergirl confetti ring bags, and stock many designs, including our own special Zusetsu Snowflower.  

Make a date with us to discuss your wedding requirements, contact Cathy by email at cathy@zusetsu.com, find out more on our website, or join our furoshiki community on Instagram @zusetsu_store.

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