What is tenugui? – KAMAWANU - Japanese Tenugui Towel


What is tenugui?

Tenugui are functional in a variety of situations
They last a very long time and can be used in many ways

Tenugui are said to have been used for over 1,000 years in Japan.
You can use them as washcloths or towels, as decorative or utilitarian wrapping, and for cleaning. Tenugui are a uniquely Japanese item that can be used for a variety of purposes.
The appeal of tenugui is that the more you wash them, the softer they become.
They come in a wide variety of colors and patterns, and can also be used as fashion accessories.

Tenugui are sustainable
They are hand-dyed by craftsmen in Japan.
By using tenugui for a long time, one can enjoy the subtle changes that occur with prolonged use.

Tenugui are decorated using a hand-dyeing technique which was established in Japan over 100 years ago. This technique isn't a mere surface treatment—it dyes the material through to the core of each thread.
Because the yarn is dyed all the way through, the fabric does not become stiff with time, is highly absorbent, and dries easily.
Artisans with many years of experience dye each tenugui by hand after making various adjustments according to the weather, seasonal humidity, and temperature.
As a result of this caring craftsmanship, each piece has a unique character.
Kamawanu artisans consider all aspects of the seasons to create tenugui that reflect the seasons and how the environment and nature shifts seasonally.
Just like denim, tenugui get softer with time and cultivate a nurturing relationship with the owner.

Tradition and Innovation


Since ancient times, there are many Japanese patterns which are rich with meaning and reflect a life filled with wishes and dreams.
At Kamawanu, we incorporate these historical auspicious motifs into the design of our tenugui — a reflection of tradition and austerity.
At the same time, we also create new designs that are well-loved across Japan and the world.
This mix of the historical and the new that we have cultivated at Kamawanu is an intentional desire to create "tenugui that will still be loved 100 years from now".

Tenugui are versatile
A single tenugui can be used for a wide range of purposes.

Tenugui can be used for a variety of situations. They make great accessories as scarves or bandanas, and as decorative items for the home such as table runners, cloth napkins, or placemats.
Japanese people have used tenugui as tools for wrapping and carrying things for over 1,000 years, and Kamawanu tenugui are the epitome of stylish, functional and adaptable accessories.
"Wrapping" is important in Japanese culture because it is an expression of treating things with care — be it your body or your stuff. This is at the core of Kamawanu tenugui: an ecological and wide-ranging multi-functional product line with care in mind.
Tenugui say "I care" both in how they look and how you can use them in a variety of ways.