Iwatemo series Handcrafts from Iwate Japan with Harri Koskinen design

  Iwate is located in the north of mainland Japan and there are still many craftsmen living in that area. That area is especially famous for sand casting products called Nanbu-tekki (南部鉄器).   Internationally renowned Finnish designer, Mr. Harri Koskinen, collaborated with a company in Iwate to create new products from the local crafts. The Iwatemo project started in 2016 from the research…

Beautiful lace glass works by Mr. Taichi Itou

Mr. Ito was born in 1975 in Yamaguchi prefecture, Japan. When he was 18, he moved to the USA, where he originally studied pottery. He, then, moved onto the study of glass art. He moved back to Japan in 1999 and he eventually set up his own workshop in 2004 in Yamaguchi prefecture. His works…

Simple and modern yosegi parquetry business card holder and hand mirror

Yosegi marquetry in Hakone is usually made with very thinly sliced marquetry sheets, which are glued to the surfaces of boxes, photo frames and trays etc. The advantage of using the sheet is that they can produce a large amount of the same designed products at the same time. There are, however, several craftsmen who…

Hand painted Yuzen kimono fan from Kyoto

Kyoto has a long history of producing Kimono, which is a Japanese traditional clothes, and Yuzen is one technique used for dyeing the kimono fabrics. Hand painted dyeing Yuzen is all painted by hand and it is almost like a piece of art. The base bamboo fan is made in Marukame city, where is famous…

Echizen Washi Handcrafted durable paper Eico bags

  Echizen city, where has over 1,500 year history of handcrafted washi paper, is located in Ishikawa prefecture of Japan. Washi is made using fibers from the inner bark of the gampi tree, the mitsumata shrub (Edgeworthia chrysantha), or the paper mulberry (kōzo) bush.   Washi is generally tougher than ordinary modern paper made from…

Hakata magemono or wappa from Fukuoka 博多曲物 玉樹

 Hakata magemono is a traditional crafts from Fukuoka, Japan. Magemono (曲げ物)literally means ‘Bent thing’ and it is generally made with Japanese cedar. Me on the left and Ms. Tamaki Shibata, who is the principal craftswoman, in the middle. As far as I know she is the only female craftswoman who makes this type of crafts…

New arrival of Iwamiyaki pottery from Shimane prefecture 雪舟窯

It’s been a while since I posted my last article and it is already autumn in Japan! There is a famous street in this Aoyama area called Ginkgo tree street (神宮外苑いちょう並木), which is about 1 minute walk from my store, and this street is famous for beautiful autumn color from late November till early December. The…

New arrivals of Mr. Ryosuke Ando pottery

It has been getting hot lately in Tokyo of around 30 degree C. It is almost like Summer, but rainy season starts pretty soon, which lasts for about a month until Mid July followed by real hot Summer soon after. Summer in Japan is, as you may now, very hot with high humidity of around…

Spirited young talented ceramic artist, Ms. Tomoko Takahashi

Ms. Tomoko Takahashi (高橋朋子)was born in Hokkaido, where is an island in the northernmost part of Japan and then she later graduated from a University in the southernmost part of Japan called Okinawa. She now lives in Chiba, which is only about an hour train journey from Tokyo. Her ceramic style has constantly been changing…