Natural and accelerated aging of silk often induce changes in the physical and/or chemical properties. The objective of this study was to measure the changes related to the degradation of silk of kimono fabrics dating from the Meiji era. Thirteen four crepe silk kimono fabric samples dyed with early synthetic dyes were subjected to various experimental techniques ranging from visual and microscopic observation to spectroscopic analysis. The observed macroscopic damage included fabric splits, fading or dye transfer, corrosion of the metal threads, and yarn and fiber fraying. In many samples, both the moisture regain and surface pH, as an empirical measure of the acidity of the fabric, were lower than those of modern silk. Under infrared spectroscopy, some samples showed characteristic spectral changes compared to modern silk. The observed changes in the chemical and physical properties of the older kimono samples might be, at least partly, attributed to their related structural changes in the degraded silk. The results also suggest varying degrees of degradation in the kimono samples, caused by more than 100 years of natural aging, use, and environmental factors.
To extract clothing life-support information for elderly men and women, we investigated clothing life, including sleepwear, for six viewpoints based on various lifestyles, using a five-grade evaluation. The survey subjects totaled 160 men and women age 60 or older (80 men and 80 women, average age, 74.18 years).
For the average differences of “the serious consideration of quality of life, dietary life, clothing life, and the fullness level of life” between the sexes, the women’s lifestyles scored higher than those of the men. However, on the topics of sleep and sleepwear for functionality and comfort there were hardly any differences between men and women.
Six factors (72.285% of the accumulated contribution ratios) were proved using factor analysis. Based on cluster analysis using the five factor scores, the four clothing life types indicated by commonalities and differences in consciousness between the elderly men and women were extracted as clothing life-support information. The two main groups of women displayed different types of the high and low evaluation for the fullness levels of various aspects of life, including sleep and sleepwear. The two main groups of men represented the commonalities, in terms of views on the main functions of sleepwear, and different in their attitudes toward various lifestyles, including sleep habits.