Japanese Crafts – Hakone-Yosegi-Zaiku Marquetry

In any country a lot of crafts will develop depending on the natural resources which are available, if a village in Fukuoka has a lot of good clay then people will find a way to create beautiful pottery, if an onsen village in the north of Japan has wood and lots of visiting families, then […]

Japanese Crafts – Kaga Yuzen from Ishikawa

The little town of Kaga in Ishikawa prefecture used to be an old temple town which today is famous for not only its temples but also its onsen. In the Edo period (1603-1868) a local printer and dyer, Yuzensai Miyazaki, worked on creating beautiful silk cloth with patterns and managed to perfect what became known […]

Japanese Crafts – Yamaga-toro Lanterns

Yamaga-toro are lanterns manufactured in Yamaga City in Kumamoto Prefecture. They are made using only Japanese paper and glue to create a three-dimensional object. The manufacturing technique has been passed down from the end of the Muromachi period, which is applied not only to conventional votive offerings but also to decorative figures, gifts or souvenirs, […]

Japanese Crafts – Nambu Ironware

In the area around Morioka in Iwate Prefecture people used to have a different name for this location, it  was known as Nambu in the Edo period (1603-1868). In Nambu traditional ironware was produced in two areas, today they are known as Morioka City and in Mizusawa City in the south. It is believed that […]

Regional Traditional Crafts to Be Exhibited during Expo Milano 2015

From METI website: Designs by Oki SATO in Combination with Traditional Craftsmen’s Techniques – Cool Japan Design Gallery – At Expo Milano 2015, the Cool Japan Design Gallery is to be established as one of the exhibitions at the Japan Pavilion, featuring traditional crafts which are created in collaboration between master craftsmen from every region […]

Japanese Crafts – Edo Sashimono, Tokyo

  A famous aspect that you can find in Buddhist temples, and furniture related to Buddhism, is the almost magical ability to make something with no nails. For example, Kiyomizu-dera (清水寺) in Kyoto is a temple that was constructed in 1633 and still stands today, without a single nail used in its construction. Just as […]

Kyoto Traditional Industry Foundation – Kyoto Museum of Traditional Crafts

Kyoto can be said to be one of the best centres of Japanese traditions, crafts and Japanese history. Located in the centre of Japan it was the Imperial capital for a thousand years. Today it is home to thousands of religious places including temples and shrines, as well as historical monuments, and the Kyoto Museum […]

Location of Traditional Japanese Crafts in Japan – Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry

The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry has published an amazing map showing the location of traditional crafts around Japan. It is really amazing, and absolutely essential viewing for any craft enthusiast. If you click on the below image you can zoom in on any part of the map. As you can see there are […]

Satsuma Comb – A Traditional Craft created by Samurai Warriors

By Mike Sullivan When you ask someone to name a Japanese craft then you will get a variety of answers, but I would be very surprised if someone mentioned combs, or even the Satsuma comb! It isn’t something you would think of as a traditional craft, of course everyone has hair and it makes sense […]

Yukinori Jinnohara – Tsuchiyu Kokeshi Doll Artisan

By Saneyuki Owada Yukinori Jinnohara 陣野原幸紀 One of the best Tsuchiyu Kokeshi Artisans     A Tsuchiyu Kokeshi doll maker, and also president of the Tsuchiyu Kokeshi Association. He has received many prizes from Japan Kokeshi dolls contests which have been held in Shiroishi city in Miyagi-prefecture every May since 1959 and other competitions such […]

Kazuo Sato – Togatta Kokeshi Doll Artisan

By Saneyuki Owada  Kazuo Sato 佐藤一夫 Born 1st January 1936- Togatta Kokeshi doll Maker A Togatta Kokeshi doll maker who has received three Prime Minister Prizes in 1988, 1995 and 2003 (a grand prize which is a commendation bestowed by the Prime Minister of Japan) at the Japan Kokeshi Dolls contest which have been held […]

Akihiro Sakurai – One of the Best Naruko Kokeshi Doll Artisans

By Saneyuki Owada Born 2nd June 1951, Naruko Kokeshi doll maker A Naruko Kokeshi doll maker who received the grand prize called the Prime Minister prize (It is a commendation bestowed by the Prime Minister of Japan) at the Michinoku Kokeshi Dolls contest in 2001 (This contest has been held at Yamagata city every October since […]

Edo Kiriko Kobayashi – Traditional Japanese Glass Craft

By Saneyuki Owada Yoshiro Kobayashi: The third generation owner of Kobayashi Glass Yoshiro Kobayashi was born in Koutou-ku, Tokyo. After graduating from Meiji University, He took up the study of glassware under the direction of his father, Hideo, who was awarded with a medal and the title “Contemporary Master Craftsman.” Yoshiro Kobayashi followed in his […]

Edo Kiriko Glassware – Beautiful Crafts that resulted from European Influence

By Mike Sullivan A typical image of Japanese people, and in particular of traditional Japanese people eating or drinking, would feature cups and plates but nothing made out of glass, even when we think of sake cups the common image is of something made out of ceramics. It therefore might be surprising to hear that […]