Traditional Japanese Noren – Past and Present

The History of Traditional Japanese Noren

Thousands of years ago, people wove curtains of long grasses, reeds, and large leaves in ancient Japanese times. This was to create a barrier from the elements. These curtain-like barriers evolved over the centuries and. These came to resemble what we know as Japanese Noren curtains. What began as protection from the elements became many different things as the curtains were displayed in shop doorways with crest, showing what was in the room. More people began to read increased Japanese writing replaced pictures.

Noren Curtains Today

The Noren of today is rectangle cloth fabric panels with a slit down the middle. The slit gives easy passage through an opening while creating a cloth door. This provides a sense of privacy and a light source. Our Noren is seen most frequently on storefronts and businesses in Japan. Noren indicates the type of product being sold and shows if the store is open. Many people may be familiar with the curtains hanging in their favorite sushi restaurant’s kitchen and bathroom doorways. These hide the chef and rooms from diners.

Adapting Authentic Noren into Western Design and Interior Decorating

Over the years, the Noren has done many different jobs. For an Asian look, modern decorators hang between rooms. Additionally, you can hang several of our curtains to section a room without closing the space completely. Often, our curtains are hung near the main entranceway to block the view. Noren is also considered the “softest” form of Japanese design screening as the fabric is soft to the touch as you pass. But also because the curtains flutter in the breeze and allow sounds and smell to float through. Traditional Japanese Noren is easily installed using curtain rods with suspension brackets.

Noren Curtains

Curtains will be draped near a formal main entranceway to block viewing into the rest of the home. Noren is also considered the “softest” form of Japanese design screening as the fabric is not only soft to the touch as you pass. Traditional Japanese Noren is easily installed. They are generally sewn with a large hollow hem for fitting a rod.

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