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This one-of-a-kind vintage design was printed + dyed by hand with natural indigo in the Nankeen technique in Shanghai over 50 years ago. It has 3 panels hand-stitched together. The border pictures Foo Dogs - spirit animals responsible for protecting the house + family. The center pictures phoenix birds - an imperial symbol - intermingled with flowers. The original fabric was customized for a wedding.
The pillows made for this shop were sewn with the back of the fabric facing outwards. Because of this, the lines + colors blend, giving the images a marbled effect while still holding the traditional meaning. These vintage pillows were made exclusively for this shop. Color is indigo blue + white. Sold individually. Includes a feather down pillow insert. Square + lumbar size options available.
Square: 20" x 20"
Lumbar: 10" x 18"
Hand-dyed with natural indigo in Shanghai over 50 years ago.
Sewn in New York. 100% cotton backed with natural linen.
Hidden zipper enclosure.Pre-washed.
As with any handprinting, slight variations in patterns can occur.
Machine wash cold separate, like a pair of jeans. Tumble dry, warm iron as needed.
Includes a 10/90 feather down insert made in the USA.
Traditional textiles handprinted in Shanghai, China + sewn in Brooklyn
We founded LuRu Home in 2010 to bring patronage to the vital few families still printing Nankeen fabrics by hand + to share their art with home dwellers around the globe.
LuRu Home is the definitive authority on Nankeen indigo dyed textiles, both new + old. Beyond Nankeen dyeing, our work breathes new life into the marriage of East + West, redefines Chinoiserie + makes Chinese textile art accessible + relevant to a contemporary way of living.
The Nankeen dyeing technique, dating back 3,000 years, is native to China’s Jiangsu province. Known also as Lan Yin Hua Bu (蓝印花布) + Blue Calico, it’s still practiced traditionally today in a handful of small workshops. Using hand-cut paper screens, soybean paste thickened with lime + natural indigo dye, artisans print contemporary versions of ancient patterns on locally-grown cottons + linens. First, a thick soy-bean paste is applied to the fabric through a hand-cut oiled paper screen. When the soy paste has dried + hardened, the fabric is submerged in natural indigo baths. The dried paste creates a hard, protective barrier through which the indigo dye cannot pass. This is called a resist. Upon oxidation, the indigo-saturated fabric gains a vibrant blue + is set to dry in the sun. The paste is carefully scraped away to reveal crisp prints + the cottons are laundered to remove excess dye.
LuRu Home’s contemporary Nankeen cottons + linens are produced by hand using natural, chemical-free indigo outside of Shanghai by family-owned workshops where generations pass down the craft. Next, they are sewn into home accessories via responsible manufacturing. They make the perfect indigo keepsake; traditional Chinese fabrics reimagined for a contemporary way of living.
Nankeen dyeing has recently become the first textile craft nominated to China’s renown Intangible Cultural Heritage list by the Ministry of Culture — a big honor for a humble tradition.
Claire + Liza