|Motif Type||Religious Motif|
Tabane noshi are bundles of abalone used as religious offerings. Noshi literally means a present. Tabane noshi are attached to the wrapping of expensive or auspicious occasion gifts to announce that the item inside is a gift. For this reason tabane noshi remain a popular motif on wrapping paper and furoshiki.
Seasonal Use, Exceptions & Pairings
Tabane noshi were originally bundles of abalone used as religious offerings. Nowadays, paper representations of them are used as decorations during festivals or attached to gifts. Due to these associations tabane noshi is an auspicious motif.
Noshi also sounds like the Japanese word for '"expand" or "progress"... [and so] came to be an auspicious symbol of the continuation of the family line.' Tabane noshi are a common motif in semori, "back protectors," charms embroidered onto the back of children's garments that lack a center seam to repel evil influences. 
Identification & Style Variations
Tabane noshi is rarely seen in a realistic form. It is usually stylised into a bunch of long paper-like strips in many colours and often with smaller patterns inside, which is customary for auspicious items.
The current stylized version of tabane noshi with a both ends free and a band in the center came into fashion in the Keichō Era (1596-1615) of the Edo Period. Since then the main variations have been in size and placement of motifs within the outline created by the motif.
Blue tsukesage with tabane noshi and flowers from the collection of Fuyou.
Explain motif in example and what is is featured on and with
Motif in Literature & Other Usage
Where possible - try to find examples of motif in literature, art and real life. If you are unable to find an example - remove this section.
Relevant Threads / Discussions
- Allen, Jeanne. Designer's Guide to Japanese Patterns. Kawade Shobo Shinsha Publishing. 1984. p.129.
- Four Centuries of Fashion: Classical Kimono from the Kyoto National Museum. Asian Art Museum of San Francisco. 1997. p.122.
- Marshall, John. Make Your Own Japanese Clothes. Kodansha International. 1988. p.18.
- Allen, Jeanne. Designer's Guide to Japanese Patterns. Kawade Shobo Shinsha Publishing. 1984. p.106.
Authors & Contributors
Author/s: tzippurah (IG Username)