Sheep grazing in the shadow of Ezo Fuji, Hokkaido, c. 1930.
Kimono fashion, c. 1910.
“Prior to Japan’s expanded contact with the world outside its borders in the mid-1850s, wool was a relative novelty, confined to such uses as the fabric of [feudal] military campaign coats (jimbaori) … The [Meiji era] military class promoted Western-style uniforms starting in the 1870s, yet Japanese wool consumption depended on imported fabrics from Germany and England through the late 1890s.
“… It was not until the kimono-wearing consumer adopted woolens and worsted wool that one can speak of a wool industry in Japan. Increased demand for coats to be worn over the kimono – known as tombi, nijumawashi, and asumakoto – ignited the market, as many were made of woolen fabrics.”
– Kimono: A Modern History, by Terry Satsuki Milhaupt, 2014