Furoshiki literally means ‘a bathroom spread cloth.’ It was used in the Edo period at public baths to bundle one’s own clothes. They are square cloths of various sizes with elegant patterns, which are made of silk, cotton, rayon, or nylon. It was later used as a wrapping cloth to transport gifts and other goods, whether box, round or cylindrical shaped objects. The beauty of furoshiki lies in its smart wrapping methods and easy but artistic bows.
There was a time when furoshiki was almost forgotten by Japanese people due to the permeation of plastic shopping bags, but in the rise of environmental awareness and the efforts to create a sustainable society, furoshiki is coming back.