Sericulture flourished on Hachijōjima island as far back as the Heian period (794-1185), and the island presented tribute in the form of Hachijō-ginu silk. Kihachijō is a fabric woven from silk thread pre-dyed using the island’s plants, water, and soil. Only three colors are used: “yellow” dyed from Hachijō kariyasu (small carpetgrass), “reddish yellow” dyed from the bark of the madami (bay) tree, and “black” dyed from the bark of the chinquapin tree and volanic ash mud. During the early Edo period, Kihachijō was considered a fabric of the highest grade, permitted to be used only by the families of the shogun and daimyo. Its image as a textile of commoners was later cemented when it was worn for merchant daughter roles in kabuki performances.