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Old 10-27-2004, 11:02 AM   #26
Jack Simpson
Dojo: Western Maryland Aikikai - Frederick, Maryland
Location: hangin' with the tengu in the "mountains" of Maryland
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Re: Hemp Dogi

"This is velvet, not velveteen. A gentleman should know the difference" - the Hank Hill Show (USA).

Just got my hemp gi from Machiko yesterday. She has been a real pleasure to deal with, including email updates on my questions as well as very prompt service. I really didn't expect to see the gi this soon (roughly 2.5 weeks from when I mailed the check).

The fabric is a twill (she sent a swatch when I initially inquired), that is about the color of unbleached cotton gi's. It feels quite soft, even without washing. The weight is about that of a single weave judo gi and the pattern is taken from that design. The collar is well reinforced and the shoulders and chest have two layers of fabric. The jacket has a very nice fit to it.

I asked for extra length on the jacket (for hakama tucking) and to have the knee pads extend to bottom hem of the pants. Done at no extra charge. I don't have one pair of gi pants where the knee pad rests right on my knees when I'm doing suwariwaza, so having the knee pads go all the way down insures that won't be a problem. I have found this feature in some more expensive double weave judo gis and it's nice.

I also added a little extra size as I figured the gi would shrink. Machiko noted in the gi's "care and feeding" instructions that she pre-washes the fabric before sewing, so we'll see how much it changes.

Now the down side. I was injured in class last Saturday and until the x-rays confirm or deny a broken rib I can't take the gi out for a test drive . Drat. But I promise to check back in as soon as I get it on the mat and let you know how it moves.

I can say that I'm very happy with the service and the product so far and can highly recommend sending Machiko an inquiry if you're interested in saving the world, one hemp plant at a time .

Cheers,
Jack
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Old 10-27-2004, 12:18 PM   #27
Janet Rosen
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Re: Hemp Dogi

Jack, thank you for the update! and here's hoping you "only" pulled muscles (do give them time to mend) and are back in your gi and on the mat "toot sweet"

Janet Rosen
http://www.zanshinart.com
"peace will enter when hate is gone"--percy mayfield
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Old 10-28-2004, 09:03 AM   #28
Jack Simpson
Dojo: Western Maryland Aikikai - Frederick, Maryland
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Re: Hemp Dogi

Merci Janet. X-rays came back negative and my wife won't let me leave the house with a gi, hemp or otherwise. I'm even passing on taking ukemi for the testing that's happening this weekend. Hopefully I'll be right as rain soon.

Cheers,
Jack
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Old 10-28-2004, 11:08 AM   #29
Janet Rosen
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Re: Hemp Dogi

Your wife is a wise woman (smile). But please DO post update on how it feels to train in the gi and how it holds up after laundering (I've trained w/ her daughter so know that a well-worn one continues to look and hold up beautifully, but your first-hand experience will be most welcome data!)

Janet Rosen
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Old 10-28-2004, 02:44 PM   #30
Jack Simpson
Dojo: Western Maryland Aikikai - Frederick, Maryland
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Re: Hemp Dogi

Will do.

Jack
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Old 11-04-2004, 12:35 PM   #31
Jack Simpson
Dojo: Western Maryland Aikikai - Frederick, Maryland
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Re: Hemp Dogi

A hemp gi report after washing and two classes:

As my lung hasn't collapsed from a broken rib, I decided that I've had long enough to "heal" and got back on the mat this week, with the new hemp gi. Lovely wife Lisa (LWL to her friends) laundered the gi in the traditional manner by beating it on stones in the mountain stream close to the house. Well, no. But she did wash it (I'm only allowed to do "whites", due to various laundry "incidents" ). The gi did shrink up some, but not as much as I thought and it will likely shrink up a little more as time goes on.

Class time. The gi is actually a little lighter than a single weave judo gi. The fit is great, but the feel is different that other karate or judo gi's I've had (cotton). It's hard to explain, but the fabric feels old (as in ancient). You get the feeling that you're tied into an earlier time. I don't want to get all spooky on you here, but it is an interesting feeling.

The gi is really quite warm for the apparent thin-ness of the fabric (again compared to a judo gi). This is likely due to the weave and may be a property of the hemp cloth. The gi drapes well, stays tucked in the hakama and the pants are heavy duty. My one complaint is that the knee pads need to be moved over a little and I may talk to Machiko about this or just try to fix it myself. Once the pads are on-line, the pants will easily become my favorites from their durable feel and fit. I also need to shorten them up a bit, but that's my bad on the initial measurement.

What this gi is not:

1) white. The fabric, as posted before, is the unbleached color (sand color) and I'm not going to hit it with bleach to change this.

2) thick. While the seams and connection bits are well done, this isn't a double weave judo gi. The shoulders and chest are double lined but there is not much "padding". It also remains to be seen how it will hold up to throws that use the gi, although I think it will be fine.

What this gi is:

1) loose. The jacket especially, has a very loose fit and feel to it, almost like a kimono and it drapes down the body as opposed to standing out like a heavy-weight gi would. This is something you may or may not like. It sort of gives me the feel of the old kung-fu television show. All I need is that wooden flute thing going on in the background. I should mention that it does stay closed well and hangs comfortably.

2) warm. Surprisingly so, as I mentioned earlier.

3) tough. From a fabric standpoint, I can see that it will take alot of abuse. As we do plenty of throws that use the gi, I'll find out in short order how the seams hold up, but the fabric itself isn't going to rip.

Final impressions: There is a Japanese word used often in Aikido circles that I'm fond of - "shugyo" . It means roughly, " the day to day struggle for enlightenment ". That's what the this gi is, the one to use for daily, hard training. It's not the pretty, snow-white gi that you have for special occasions. It's the gi to sweat in and abuse, and I think it will hold up well for that.

Cheers,
Jack
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Old 11-04-2004, 12:37 PM   #32
Janet Rosen
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Re: Hemp Dogi

Thank you, Jack.

Janet Rosen
http://www.zanshinart.com
"peace will enter when hate is gone"--percy mayfield
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Old 11-04-2004, 01:41 PM   #33
Jack Simpson
Dojo: Western Maryland Aikikai - Frederick, Maryland
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Re: Hemp Dogi

no worries, glad to help. - happy training.

Jack
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Old 01-11-2005, 02:10 PM   #34
Bill Danosky
 
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Re: Hemp Dogi

Quote:
Jørgen Jakob Friis wrote:
"Hemp gi - heavy sweating - wil that produce fumes that wil get everyone high ?
You're the one next to Holland. Check that out and get back with us.
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Old 01-25-2005, 11:02 AM   #35
SMART2o
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Re: Hemp Dogi

>Hemp gi - heavy sweating - wil that produce fumes that wil get everyone high ? Could result in a very interesting training-session.....


I probably shouldn't be posting this, but I have actually gone to train at my dojo after inhaling cannibis smoke, and I must say, it really did help me to relax and to better utilize my ki. I don't recommend that any novice cannibis smokers follow in my footsteps, as it tends to cause confusion in new/experimental users and you will slow down class for everyone else.
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Old 01-25-2005, 12:24 PM   #36
Bryon Lichtenhan
Dojo: Aikido at the Center
Location: Tucson, AZ
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Re: Hemp Dogi

I'm new to the forum but I noticed this thread and felt I had something to offer. I have done a little research on the web for hemp gi's in the past and found a cotton/hemp blend karate style gi at www.nagamochi.ca. I don't know anything about it, but my personal experience with hemp clothing is that 100% hemp wears out quickly around seams. This may not hold true for the gi being discussed so far in this thread, but I am now wary of buying 100% hemp. What I would like to see is an organic cotton double weave judo type gi. If Machiko's gi holds together around the seams though I would certainly be interested

Last edited by Bryon Lichtenhan : 01-25-2005 at 12:25 PM. Reason: fix quoted web site
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Old 01-25-2005, 02:24 PM   #37
Jack Simpson
Dojo: Western Maryland Aikikai - Frederick, Maryland
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Re: Hemp Dogi

Bryon,

I haven't seen any problem with the seams on the gi so far, but it's pretty new yet. So far, however, it's holding up really well to hard training.

Cheers,
Jack

P.S. a note to the previous poster: if one of my students showed up for class under the influence of anything, they would be shown the door. The danger you present to yourself and especially others, by this action in a martial training envrionment is inexcusable. Get off the mat!
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Old 01-25-2005, 02:46 PM   #38
SMART2o
Location: Alberta
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Re: Hemp Dogi

Quote:
P.S. a note to the previous poster: if one of my students showed up for class under the influence of anything, they would be shown the door. The danger you present to yourself and especially others, by this action in a martial training envrionment is inexcusable. Get off the mat!

If I showed up to your class after smoking, you wouldn't even know. I go just about everywhere high, including my gym and my job, and have been since I was a young child.. It really isn't a danger at all.

Last edited by SMART2o : 01-25-2005 at 02:48 PM.
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Old 01-25-2005, 03:17 PM   #39
Jack Simpson
Dojo: Western Maryland Aikikai - Frederick, Maryland
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Re: Hemp Dogi

Mark,

How you go to work is your choice. Mine is who I allow on the mat, you wouldn't be welcome.

Jack
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Old 01-25-2005, 03:38 PM   #40
SMART2o
Location: Alberta
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Re: Hemp Dogi

Quote:
Jack Simpson wrote:
Mark,

How you go to work is your choice. Mine is who I allow on the mat, you wouldn't be welcome.

Jack

That's fine with me. You are entitled to allow or disallow whoever you choose into your dojo. I never travel to Maryland anyways.
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Old 01-25-2005, 09:02 PM   #41
aikidoc
Dojo: Aikido of Midland
Location: Midland Texas
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Re: Hemp Dogi

Quote:
Mark Chalmers wrote:
>I probably shouldn't be posting this, but I have actually gone to train at my dojo after inhaling cannibis smoke, and I must say, it really did help me to relax and to better utilize my ki. I don't recommend that any novice cannibis smokers follow in my footsteps, as it tends to cause confusion in new/experimental users and you will slow down class for everyone else.
By your statement, you contend you are no novice. Being high on the mat is dangerous for yourself and others. It slows down reaction time and impairs judgment. Most chronic pot users think it does not affect them. I agree. You would not be allowed on my mat either. I have patients come in periodically who think I don't smell it on them or can't tell by their eyes. The physiological reactions are not something you can control. I can smell the smoke easily-heck I grew up in the 60s and 70s when almost everyone was getting high.

Do yourself and others a favor-stay home when you are high.
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Old 01-26-2005, 07:00 AM   #42
SMART2o
Location: Alberta
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Re: Hemp Dogi

Quote:
Being high on the mat is dangerous for yourself and others. It slows down reaction time and impairs judgment..
That's debatable. What it does in small doses is dilate the bronchial tubes, dilate the blood vessels, and it is also an anti-convulsant. These effects really do help with becoming more aware of you and your partners' ki. There is a difference between getting wasted off of it and using it in a helpful amount. Another thing, I don't train in a manner that would injure anybody. There is no reason why anyone should be getting injured on the mat. Anytime I have seen someone get hurt, the fault was on them for coming in to train with an injury already.
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Old 01-31-2005, 09:32 PM   #43
wsburm
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Re: Hemp Dogi

does anyone on the list have any idea where she gets her fabric? i am curious about trying this out for myself. i just need to know what to order from my favorite fabric shop.

william

wsb
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Old 02-01-2005, 12:40 AM   #44
Janet Rosen
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Re: Hemp Dogi

Quote:
William Burmeister wrote:
does anyone on the list have any idea where she gets her fabric? i am curious about trying this out for myself. i just need to know what to order from my favorite fabric shop.
william
I have used two sources for hemp fabrics for weapons bags:
The first is http://www.hemptraders.com/index.shtml but I had some quality issues with their dyes (should not be a problem on the natural unbleached twill) and the second one is http://www.hempsupply.com/index.htm who also has nice organic cottons.
While what Machiko makes for sale is a twill, I've seen a gi she made her daughter made from a herringbone twill that looked just amazing. I suspect both companies sell it.

Janet Rosen
http://www.zanshinart.com
"peace will enter when hate is gone"--percy mayfield
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Old 02-01-2005, 04:50 PM   #45
wsburm
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Re: Hemp Dogi

thanks janet. i have seen her ad online but i cannot quite make out the gi. is the gi top of all one type of material? or is there a different woven material up top and something lighter on the bottom? if it is all on piece of twill, wouldn't it be pretty warm like it was mentioned?

wsb
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Old 02-01-2005, 04:57 PM   #46
Janet Rosen
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Re: Hemp Dogi

Quote:
William Burmeister wrote:
is the gi top of all one type of material? or is there a different woven material up top and something lighter on the bottom?
IIRC, all of a lightweight but tough twill, but Jack who is wearing one is best suited (HAH!) to answer that.

Janet Rosen
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"peace will enter when hate is gone"--percy mayfield
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Old 02-03-2005, 01:28 PM   #47
Jack Simpson
Dojo: Western Maryland Aikikai - Frederick, Maryland
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Re: Hemp Dogi

best suited.....

Yep, it's all one type of twill for both the gi top and bottoms, and yes, it's warm, but not too bad. Besides, I work out to sweat. Not sure if it's lightweight, medium weight, etc, as I'm not a fabric shopping kind of guy, but it's definitely twill. Have fun.

Jack
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Old 06-20-2006, 12:16 AM   #48
TigerJK
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Re: Hemp Dogi

Quote:
John Boswell wrote:
If Hemp is so wonderful, why is it so expensive? Novelty? Rare? Hard to manufacture? I'm all for recyclling and saving the world and stuff, but damn...!

I would like to know why the price is so high. If anyone (Jack?) knows why the price difference, I'm curious to learn more.
Babylon
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Old 06-23-2006, 12:03 PM   #49
Timothy Tikker
Dojo: Huron Valley Aikikai
Location: Ann Arbor, MI
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Re: Hemp Dogi (& Hakama)

Hi,

I'm a newbie to this forum, and to Aikido (started lessons this week). I came across your forum via a web search re hemp gi.

I thought this might be of interest:

http://www.rawganique.com/Dept-Mens/...et-samui-e.htm

http://www.rawganique.com/PantsKarate.htm

Rawganique is an online store which (among other things) sells organic natural fiber goods. They specialize in certified organic hemp grown in Romania.

The above-linked items are the coat and trousers for a Karate-type gi. The trousers are available either in a 70% organic hemp/30% organic cotton blend, or 75% organic linen (flax)/25% organic cotton. Both are available in three colors, including of course a natural/ecru

The coat is about to become available again after having been out of stock for a time. The site says that they'll now take pre-orders for the new stock at the old price for an unspecified limited time.

I don't have these items myself (yet). But I've ordered other items from them and find this to be a good company. They're about the only outfit I've found that offers certified organically-grown hemp and flax linen (e.g. if you want real linen bedding).

Also, I found a hemp hakama listed on the Tozando website -- but it's for Kendo. So I asked what the difference was between that and an Aikido hakama, and got this response:

"The Koshiita Panel of the Aikido Hakama is softer than Kendo one.
Because when practicing Aikido, especially UKEMI, it is hard if the Koshiita panel is like kendo one ."

FWIW...

- Tim Tikker

PS: OK, enough of the cracks re getting intoxicated while wearing hemp clothes! Industrial hemp is essentially devoid of hallucinogens. Some argue it's even a different species than the Cannabis drug. Even if it's the same species but a different breed, just think of chihuahuas vs. St. Bernards...!
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Old 06-23-2006, 02:53 PM   #50
Janet Rosen
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Re: Hemp Dogi

timothy thank you for updated info on wonderful fabrics!

Janet Rosen
http://www.zanshinart.com
"peace will enter when hate is gone"--percy mayfield
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