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The kanoko pattern features a repeated diamond design, with small white spots nestled within each diamond. The word "kanoko" means "deer child" and refers to the pattern being inspired by the spots on a fawn deer's coat. The Kanoko motif emerges as a cherished emblem of sophistication, elegance, and status.  

In Japanese culture, deer are revered as symbols of grace, elegance, and tranquillity. This association dates to the Edo period, a time of vibrant arts and culture in Japan, when deer motifs quickly became synonymous with wealth and prestige. The intricate nature of the pattern, along with the labour-intensive and expensive production process, made it a coveted status symbol among the elite. 


In Shinto beliefs, deer hold a special significance as messengers of the gods and are often considered sacred animals. They are believed to possess spiritual powers and act as intermediaries between humans and the divine realm. In one of Japan’s oldest chronicles of myths and legends, called ‘Kojiki’ there is a story that Takemikazuchi, a Shinto deity, transformed into a white deer to aid the Sun Goddess Amaterasu in overcoming her sorrow and emerging from her self-imposed seclusion in the Heavenly Rock Cave (Ama-no-Iwato). By appearing as a deer, Takemikazuchi was able to capture Amaterasu's attention and draw her out of hiding, thereby restoring light and prosperity to the world. 


Because of its association with wealth, status, and spiritual significance, the deer motif is often chosen for formal occasions and ceremonial garments, where it adds an air of elegance, prestige, and spiritual connection. 

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