Monday, June 1, 2009

Red Korean Skirt (Chima)

Accession Number: A.8416.64-1b

Label: Woman’s Costume, Korea, c.1960’s, Gift of Miss Younghee Choy

This traditional Korean garment is usually worn with a cropped jacket (Jeogori). Together, the two items are known as a Hanbok.

This chima consists of a tomato-red, brocaded silk skirt with flowers in green and gold. Numerous pleats at the top of the garment allow it to form a graceful bell shape. These pleats are attached to a white cotton yoke that fits over the shoulders and is normally covered by the jeogori. The skirt closes in the back with a pair of white cotton ties located just above the pleats.

When deconstructed, the skirt yielded a single large rectangle of silk, comprised of three panels of fabric joined at the selvages. Due to the weaving process, the reverse side of the silk showed none of the red ground and instead displayed wide bands of green and gold. The cotton yoke was not deconstructed, but one half of the left-hand tie was removed.

Following instructions from an internet crafting site, two large pieces of silk were cut into a BBQ apron shape and then hemmed so that one apron utilized the red side of the fabric while the other utilized the green and gold stripe. To form the ties, strips of fabric were joined into two long pieces, then folded lengthwise, sewn shut, and threaded through channels in the hems of the aprons. Finally, rectangles of silk were sewn onto the front of each BBQ apron to form pockets, a red pocket for the striped apron, and a striped pocket for the red apron.

The accession numbers have been embroidered on pieces of white cotton removed from the original tie and appliquéd onto the pockets.

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