Ito or Tsuka-Ito is the braiding that wraps the stingray leather around the handle. There are many materials for this wrapping, as well as different styles and techniques. Generally this braiding is made in the shape of Hishigami (lozenges).
All about the Ito
As we said this braid can be made of different materials: cotton, suede, leather, polyester, silk... All these materials can be represented in different colors.
Regarding the cost, it depends on the material used, but also on the quality of it and the craftsman who rolled it on the handle. Generally it costs a little less than $50 for a complete Ito.
The most common problem with the Ito is that with use, the braid can become loose and start to come apart.
For those who are curious, here is a video that shows how this is traditionally done: