Furoshiki is a special cloth that originated in Japan that is used over and over to wrap gifts and plenty of other goodies.
These can be made out of any kind of fabric -- any fiber, solid or patterned. The most common sizes are 17.7" wide by 26.7-28.3" tall. You can even make your own furoshiki using this tutorial and watch a video on how to wrap it up. For beginners a square shape is suggested -- it's easy to experiment with a bandana. Check out this guide to how to tie your own furoshiki.
Furoshiki means "bath spread" in Japanese. It is thought that these were originally used to bundle up clothes and personal items during the time of the public bath house. Over the years people began using the furoshiki for gift wrap, groceries, carrying books, purses,and accessories. Use of the furoshiki declined dramatically because of the popularity of plastic bags. There has been a renewed interested in furoshiki since it can help reduce our use of plastic and paper bags and reduce our impact on the earth.
posted by Alicia