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Posted by Kinakinw | --:-- | Comment [0] | TrackBack [0] | スポンサー広告

11 2012

Yosegi Zaiku, Hakone’s Traditional Wooden Craft


Right after returning from Europe, the six of us (my cousins, my sister and I) went on an overnight trip to a nearby hot spring. We met at Atami Station, had lunch at an ocean-side restaurant, stayed in Yugawara (a famous hot spring resort near Atami), and on the next day, visited Hakone. Because it was the first visit to these areas for two of the cousins, I took them to some tourist spots in Hakone.

One of the spots was Hatajuku that is famous as the village of Yosegi Zaiku where I rediscovered the fascination of this wooden craft.

In the small village of Hatajuku, we first visit Wooden Craft Hall (Hatajuku Yosegi Kaikan) and acquired basic knowledge about Yosegi.


Yosegi zaiku is wood craft techniques, begun in Hakone-Hatajyuku in 19th century, to produce designs and patterns by sticking wood pieces with different colors (all natural ones) and grain. There are two kinds of techniques now: pasting and carving. In the traditional technique, abraded sheets of sticking wood pieces are pasted on wood materials. In contrast, in the new one, the piece can be directly curved after strong adhesion bond was developed.


I often go to Hakone from my childhood and know the area like a book. Naturally, I know the craft and see the items at souvenir shops and hotels in the areas, especially the traditional items. We had one in our house. However, I had never taken good look at the curved items.

There was a Yosegi dust bin in the Japanese inn we stayed in Yugawara.

yosegi_5 yosegi_6

After leaving the hall, we went to a studio shop named Kanasashi Wood Craft owned by a Yosegi artist, Katsuhiro Kanasashi. I did like his curving Yosegi! Though the items reminded me of the modern style in 70s, the natural wood craft had unique warmth.




Curving Yosegi was pricier than the traditional one, so I couldn’t buy on impulse something to my liking. In accordance with the shop clerk who advised me to get a small and inexpensive item first, I got this a toothpick stand (I don’t use it for that purpose, though).


Don’t you think it’s nice?

Posted by Kinakinw | 14:10 | Comment [0] | TrackBack [0] | Cultural Issue (Japan)

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