Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Meet Ittan-momen!

Ittan Momen light version  (131/365)
© Kelly Weihs

Ittan-momen, which is a long piece of ghostly cloth which flies through the night air looking for victims to smother! I have started a new project, Yokai Craft Project, in which I am planning to create several yokai (they primarily will be made out of felt). It just so happens that ittan-momen is the easiest yokai to create (though I did decide to make his arms separate and stitched in a way that I can pose him in photos), a good starting point. People who know me know that another project focusing on these creatures is no big surprise.  Thank you Japan, for having great folklore!

This summer I purchased Mythical Beasts of Japan: From Evil Creatures to Sacred Beings, which is really fun to look through. (I have not spotted any ittan-momen yet.) I took a few photos to show some of what is in the book, as I could not see anywhere online that had correct images/product info! (The amazon images for this book aren't even right...)
The description:
A collection of glorious imaginary beings from Japanese mythology. The newest volume in the Traditional Patterns series, this book is a visual introduction to a variety of Japanese mythical beasts. Japanese imaginary creatures, such as Byakko (White Tiger), Suzaku (Vermilion Bird), Genbu (Black Tortoise), and Ryu (Japanese Dragon), were handed down from ancient Chinese mythology. Prayers were often offered to these beings since they are believed to cause mischief among ordinary mortals. Most of the featured works, mainly from the 12th century to the 19th century, feature motifs of sacred animals painted by artists such as Kawanabe Kyosai, Ito Jakuchu, Utagawa Kuniyoshi, and more. Moreover, all kinds of the evil creatures, such as devils and goblins, and the deities from Japanese folklore are depicted in all their splendid glory in paintings, carved wood, decorative art pieces such as mirrors, incense burners, and much more.


  1. Oh that's so cool! Can't wait to see what else you make :D
    That book looks really interesting

  2. @Pannya I'm glad you like it! <3 I am debating which creature to sew up next though I have several drawn out ideas...