Author Archives: Toothpicker

Mino – the ancient washi paper town

Posted on September 22, 2018 by Toothpicker

The preserved townscape of Minoshi
 
I think many people who are interested in Japanese paper would have heard of Mino washi paper, especially after it was was designated an Intangible Cultural Heritage by UNESCO in 2014. The origin of this paper dates back to the Nara period (710 ~ 784 CE), and is [...]

This post was posted in Architecture, Travel, Traditional arts & crafts, Anything Japanese, Architectural conservation, Japan, washi paper and was tagged with Japan, Architectural conservation, Japanese architecture, Mino, washi paper


Mr Shindo's shibori map of Arimatsu

Posted on September 20, 2018 by Toothpicker

 
One big mistake I made when I was planning my trip was that I underestimated the traveling and transferring time of using the public transport in Japan. Trains are punctual and frequent if you are traveling to major and more populated cities, but it becomes more complicated if you want to go [...]

This post was posted in Japanese designs, Exhibitions, Architecture, Fashion, Travel, Traditional arts & crafts, Anything Japanese, Contemporary craft, Architectural conservation, Designers & artists, Design, Japan, Textiles, natural dyeing, shibori, indigo dyeing and was tagged with Japanese designs, Japanese designers, traditional crafts, Japan, textiles, natural dyeing, shibori, indigo dyeing, suzusan, Arimatsu, Nagoya, House of Takeda


Hiroyuki Shindo's Little indigo museum in Miyama

Posted on September 15, 2018 by Toothpicker

 
Sometimes it doesn't matter how much planning you do before your trip, things would still go wrong... but miraculously, some kind strangers/ locals would appear out of nowhere to help you out. I am sure many people have had these experiences when they travel, and I think it is probably the most [...]

This post was posted in Exhibitions, Travel, Art, Traditional arts & crafts, Anything Japanese, Kyoto, Contemporary craft, Designers & artists, Japanese art, Textiles, natural dyeing, shibori, indigo dyeing and was tagged with museums, Kyoto, Japanese art, Japan, textiles, indigo dyeing, The little indigo museum, Miyama, Hiroyuki Shindo


I.M. Pei's Shangri-La – Miho Museum

Posted on September 12, 2018 by Toothpicker

 
"The Peach Blossom Land" was a Chinese fable written by poet Tao Yuanming in 421 CE about a fisherman's discovery of a hidden valley - an ethereal utopia where contented people lead an ideal existence in harmony with nature, unaware of the outside world for centuries. It is similar to the mystical and [...]

This post was posted in Architecture, Travel, Nature, Art, Anything Japanese, Kyoto, Contemporary, Japan and was tagged with art and design exhibitions, Kyoto, contemporary architecture, cherry blossom, Miho museum


The art of shibori at Bunzaburo in Kyoto

Posted on September 10, 2018 by Toothpicker

Katayama Bunzaburo Shoten's flagship store in Kyoto
 
When I was going through my pile of leaflets/ business cards that I picked up from my previous trips to Kyoto, one particular leaflet caught my attention. It was from Bunzaburo, a tie-dyed/ shibori (the term means “to squeeze or wring”)  company in Kyoto. Oddly enough [...]

This post was posted in Japanese designs, Shopping, Shopping guide, Travel, Traditional arts & crafts, Anything Japanese, Kyoto, Contemporary craft, Design, Japan, Textiles, shibori and was tagged with Japanese designs, shopping, Kyoto, traditional crafts, contemporary crafts, Shopping guide, textiles, shibori


Gardens, temples, and zazen in Kyoto

Posted on September 9, 2018 by Toothpicker

A view of Tofukuji's Tsutenkyo Bridge
 
It is on every tourist's itinerary to visit at least one/two karesansui (dry landscape garden) in Kyoto, but during the peak season, it is best to avoid the famous ones and head for the less crowded gardens. A few years ago, I visited Kyoto in February and [...]

This post was posted in Travel, Nature, Buddhism & meditation, Anything Japanese, Kyoto, Gardens & parks, Japan and was tagged with nature, Kyoto, gardens, temples, Zen Buddhism, zen gardens, zazen


Kaikado tea caddies shop & cafe in Kyoto

Posted on September 7, 2018 by Toothpicker

Since I only had four days in kyoto (including a day out at Miho museum with my friend), I didn't manage to fit much shopping in. Hence I targeted a few shops either close to where I was staying or near a sight I wanted to visit. One of the shops that [...]

This post was posted in Japanese designs, Food & dining, Shopping, Shopping guide, Travel, Traditional arts & crafts, Anything Japanese, Kyoto, Contemporary craft, Design, Japan and was tagged with Japanese designs, Kyoto, traditional crafts, contemporary crafts, Shopping guide, cafe, Kaikado


Textiles of Hiroshi Saito at Honen-in in Kyoto

Posted on September 5, 2018 by Toothpicker

 

Honen-in temple by the Philosopher's path
 
The older I get, the more I believe that everything happens for a reason, which includes the people we encounter over the course of our lifetime. And since I started running my own business, I discovered that when you follow your heart and passion, you are [...]

This post was posted in Japanese designs, Travel, Anything Japanese, Kyoto, Contemporary craft, Designers & artists, Design, Japan, Textiles, natural dyeing and was tagged with Japanese designs, Kyoto, temples, contemporary crafts, textiles, natural dyeing, Hiroshi Saito


Kawai Kanjiro Memorial Museum in Kyoto

Posted on September 3, 2018 by Toothpicker

 
 
I have wanted to visit Japanese potter, Kawai Kanjiro's former house - now his Memorial Museum for a long time. Yet for some reason, I never made it until this trip... it was a timely visit as the museum was like a quiet sanctuary compared to hassle and bustle in the [...]

This post was posted in Architecture, Travel, Calligraphy, Art, Traditional arts & crafts, Anything Japanese, Kyoto, Japanese art, ceramics & potteries, Carving, Japan and was tagged with museums, Kyoto, Japanese architecture, calligraphy, pottery, wood carving, Kawai Kanjiro museum


'Kanko kogai' (tourism pollution) in Kyoto

Posted on September 2, 2018 by Toothpicker

 
The usually tranquil Philosopher's path was full of tourists with selfie sticks during the cherry blossom period
 
I have been warned and I knew when I struggled to find accommodations three months before my trip, yet I still went to Kyoto during the sakura season. It was not my plan to visit [...]

This post was posted in Travel, Nature, Social issues, Anything Japanese, Kyoto, Japan, Mass tourism and was tagged with nature, Kyoto, Japan, cherry blossom, mass tourism


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