I have been asking myself recently why are bandannas always done in solid color? Why not do a pattern?
Living in Japan, I am always aware of the Japanese solution to the western alternative. In this case I looked to tenugui for inspiration. Tenugui is the Japanese equivalent to the American bandanna. Often made of similar fabric but printed traditionally with paper stencils, or shibori tie dye. Tenugui is often worn by sushi chefs, yaki tori grill pros and just about anyone sweating for their money.
Japanese patterns are plentiful and often ignored by western fashion. I was struck by the kanako pattern found on kimono in the Edo period of Japan. Typically considered Japans golden era of art, culture, and design. Kanako was traditionally made by stitched tie dye. Creating a sort of diamond pattern with each diamond having a single eye.
Conscripting the services of Yurika Shikai, we pieced art from the One Ear Brand sticker, and started to piece this design together. We (mostly she) crammed this bandanna full of beautiful detail. There is a secret buried in the design that may or may not make sense. A bandanna for the “eejyanaika- minded”.
The Eejyanaika naming is also fundamentally apart of the bandanna design but also the One Ear Brand ethos. “Fuck it, who cares”; my personal mantra for life. Eejyanaika was a movement that started at the end of the Edo period and ended at the beginning of the Meiji period. It was a transition that set Japan on a new course of Western cultural adaptations and new era of industrialization. Within a single (y)ear the country had a sudden uprising of rebellion from commoners against the imperial family. Its often diluted down to a year of celebration and carnivals. It was much more than that. Inspired greatly by block prints with content containing eejyanaika dancing, and carnival scenes we created our own dancing cult member, and dancing cats.
Influenced not only by traditional Japanese designs but also a open wave of rebellion I felt this bandanna is a token of that feeling, similar to how I feel about how 2020 has turned out. This bandanna is a piece that isn’t a political statement, but a personal statement of how tradition and culture can be woven and printed into new and beautiful things. That the rules set by others can be bent and broken to suit new needs, but should be regarded or respected. That culture isn’t defined and owned by individuals, its content that should be reused and recycled with respect. We have broke with the tradition of bandannas having solid colors by injecting a pattern into the fill.
“We don’t have a theology, we don’t have an ideology… We Dance!”