In the main room, two women are busy at work on the looms, rhythmically weaving their kasuri patterns, meticulously matching each weft thread point by point. As I have come for a hands-on tsumugi weaving experience, one of the weavers invites me to pick out a few spools of colored thread, then installs me at one of the narrow looms. She shows me how to step down on alternating pedals, slide the weft across the warp, strike down the weave. Each line requires full-body coordination, precise movements, and more than a bit of practice. Kawabata-sensei, who has been practicing this craft for 40 years, playfully scolds me every time I go too fast and end up either tangling threads or smashing my knees. But in the end, I have an original 38cm x 18cm piece of Oshima tsumugi to show for my efforts.