A fine embroidered purse, probably made to hold tissues at a tea ceremony. The exterior is embroidered with Sagara embroidery (Peking knot), and has a sarasa design of stylized butterflies, birds and flowers. The sarasa (Indian Chintz), first came to Japan through the Nanban trading in the late 16th century and was tremendously favored by the tea masters and some daimyo (regional lords) during the Edo period. The colorful and exotic fabric originated in India (spread to Java, other parts of Asia and Europe) still fascinate the Japanese today. Japanese produced their own sarasa from mid to late Edo period with an exception of earlier Wajima sarasa.
The toggle was formed as an ivory ring and ojime is carved as an elephant. Late Meiji period. Dimensions: 6 3/4" x 4 3/8"