For more than a thousand years, washi—traditional Japanese paper—has been produced with traditional techniques that are in harmony with the work of nature. "Yanagiu Kamiko" is a brand for everyday life from Yanagiu Washi (washi produced in Yanagiu) that combines contemporary sensitivity with the traditional value of this long-standing school of washi—a simple, rustic texture produced from natural materials that is durable, tender, and strong. Yanagiu Kamiko merges artwork with everyday life, adding discoveries and joy to the beauty and functionality of washi that has been widely cherished for a long time.
The craftsman applies the crease to each piece by hand, producing an expressive texture that resembles leather and is strikingly durable, which will make anybody change their idea of paper. The principal characteristic of Yanagiu Kamiko is its durability. Light, durable, handmade paper is thoroughly kneaded by hand, and then water-resistant work is applied, producing a unique texture and tender strength that endures water and repeated foldings.
Light and Durable. Everyday Material for Good Thermal Quality
The more it is kneaded, the tenderer it becomes. When soaked and dried, its original hardness comes back. There is almost no fluffing caused by friction, which is a characteristic of washi. Water-Resistant with Konjac Powder and Persimmon Tannin Water-resistance and durability are achieved by using konjac powder and persimmon tannin.
Material That Can Be Sewed and Washed
Yanagiu Washi is a highly flexible material—it can be sewed and used flat or three-dimensionally. This feature allows the material to be used in a variety of ways, such as material for small bags, interior and building material, and textiles. We are very happy to produce washi of special size and thickness, tailored to your need. Please feel free to inquire. Instruction for Maintenance *For washing, it can be hand-washed, and for dehydration, it can be machine washed. *After dehydration, dry in the shade. *Do not iron. *Do not let it touch hot objects.
No Chemical Material Used. Products That Care for Humans and the Environment
Kozo (paper mulberry), a material used for washi, is a perennial, noninvasive plant that yields abundantly. Yanagiu Kamiko products are made exclusively from natural products and are suitable for those who have dry, sensitive, or allergic skin. Contributing to the Environment by Growing the Material In Yanagiu Kamiko, we grow our own material, kozo and aibika, as we work on preserving the environment.
Natural Color That Blends Well with Everyday Life
Each piece of washi, whose entire production process is taken care of by a craftsperson by hand, has a different expression. Yanagiu Washi always extends a sense of gratitude to the rich nature of Sasaya, where the studio is located, putting emphasis on the natural, rustic color. *We do dyeing as well. Please feel free to inquire. *For natural pigment dyeing, there are several elements to be careful about.
Maximum size for one paper: 80 cm × 50 cm *Each piece of paper slightly differs in size.
The More You Use It, the More It Fits Your Hand
A hand-felt warmth that is a characteristic of washi and a soft texture created by the crease work make Yanagiu Kamiko resemble tanned leather. The quality finish by hand becomes even better as time passes by, making it an item that enriches your everyday life for a long time. Strength Brought by Hand-Kneaded "Crease" Work Crease work is a traditional technique used by Yanagiu Washi, producing a unique texture and adding extra strength to the material.
Japanese Handicraft with World-Class Quality Japanese Spirit Embodied in Each Piece of Paper
With more than a thousand-year-old natural material and technique, each piece of washi (traditional Japanese paper) is handmade by a craftsperson. With the inner skins of trees called Kozo, Mitsumata and Ganpi as the main materials, thickener extracted from Aibika is added before the paper-screening process, which is done in a method unique to Japan, called "Nagashi-Suki." Paper made by Nagashi-Suki is said to be the most thin and durable in the world, showing no deterioration for more than a hundred years and used for the restoration of damaged ancient documents and cultural assets in many countries. "Wa" of washi signifies Japan, as well as harmony. This spirit runs through the production of washi as our ancestors' wisdom, making washi one of the handicrafts that symbolize Japan.
Lord Date's Official Paper Yanagiu Washi
The home of Yanagiu Washi, Yanagiu in Sendai, Miyagi Prefecture, has been a large production area for washi since the Edo period (1603–1868), blessed with ideal conditions for making paper—abundant water and dry wind for drying paper coming down from Mt. Takadate. Requiring a lot of work before the fiber screening process, Yanagiu Washi has a unique texture and strength, which comes from the long fiber of kozo. When it is processed to further enhance durability, it is called Kamiko, which was the designated paper for the Date clan's official documents, used also for the clothes of monks, outfits of the samurai, and later for umbrellas, screens, and all scenes of everyday life. Although there were more than 400 paper-making farmers in Yanagiu in its heyday, there is only one left—a precious heir of the technique.
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Ushio Paper Mill
80 Sasaya Imasyuku Kawasaki Sibata Miyagi Japan 989-1502