A silk brocade maru obi from Japan's late Meiji Period is covered along both sides of its nearly 13-foot length with fans, each one decorated with flowers and leaves of symbolic significance. The green silk has the soft, lustrous surface that gives antique obi their unique appeal. Brocaded on the fans, adding touches of silver, rust, dark green and light green on the medium green background, are plum blossoms, pine needles, bamboo stalks and fall leaves, all associated with the seasons and long life. One of several styles of fabric belts worn with kimono, the maru obi is made of a single wide length of material folded over a lining and sewn along one side. The maru obi is formal and generally made of brocade or tapestry. Japanese obi have become popular with interior designers who use them as table runners, wall hangings and throws. This one, from the late 19th/early 20th century, is in very good condition. It measures 153" (389 cm) in length and is 12" (30 cm) wide.