Tenugui's (hand washcloth) has been used in Japan since the Heian era (794 - 1192 A.D.). Initially very costly as there were no means of mass production, they were primarily used for ceremonies and religious rituals. As onsens (bathhouses) were growing, so were the uses of these as there were no modern day towels introduced yet. Eventually dying process advanced, businesses, Kabuki actors, and sumo wrestlers sold or gave away tenugui's adorning their names. Families would get their kamon (family crest) dyed onto the cloths, or it was used as a form of a name card. Modern day technology has allowed for mass production, resulting in a more affordable commodity. Used as a hand towel, wrap for bento boxes or bottles to gift, wall art, headbands, cleaning rags, dress-top runners, and dish towels. The raw frayed edges allows them to be easily ripped for a temporary bandage. The thin and un-hemmed design allows them to dry quickly. They are so versatile, and are commonly used as gifts as they are made in many beautiful colors and designs usually dipicting nature, culture, and the different seasons.
Traditional Tenugui Designs
34cm x 90cm
Machine wash cold separately initially as there may be some discoloration, mild detergent (no bleach), hang dry or tumble dry low. Iron or steam out wrinkles.