Koshu Lacquered Deerhide
Deerhide craft products were being made in the area centered on the city of Kofu in present-day Yamanashi Prefecture during the 19th century. By the end of the same century, it is known that deerhide draw-string money bags and purses were well known among people at large as reference is made to them in Tokaidochu Hizakurige, a humorous book published in the 19th century.
Tosa Forged Blades
Records show that at the end of the 16th century there were some 400 smiths at work in Tosa. While they were skilled in the making of the samurai sword, they also seem to have made sickles and knives at the request of local farmers. Subsequently, with the promotion of forestry and the development of new fields in the area, bladed tools for agriculture and forestry were made in large quantities and a production center for forged goods came into being.
Kishu Herazao are fishing rods for catching crucian carp created by master rod craftsmen.
Mikawa Household Buddhist Altars
Mikawa Butsudan date back to the middle of the 18th century. It was then that a certain altar maker made an altar using good pine, cedar and cypress that was brought down the Yasakugawa river and finished his work using natural lacquer tapped from trees at the foot of Mt. Sarunage in the north of Mikawa.
Sakai Forged Blades
Guns and tobacco were introduced into Japan in the middle of the 16th century by the Portuguese. By the end of that century, small tobacco knives were being forged in Sakai and the Tokugawa Shogunate awarded the forgers of Sakai a special seal of approval and guarantee of their quality.
Aizu Hongo Ware
It seems that the making of pottery started here during the Sengoku period (1428-1573), when tiles to roof a castle in Aizuwakamatsu were being made. Then, during the early years of the Edo period (1600-1868) Hoshina Masayuki, who led the Aizu clan, saw a need to patronize and further the making of pottery, and the production of what became Aizu Hongo Yaki ware flourished under the supervision of the clan. This subsequently led to the making of everyday pieces of pottery for use by people at large. Production of ceramics here suffered badly due to fighting just prior to the Meiji Restoration in 1868 and as a result of a devastating fire in the Taisho period (1912-1926). The industry recovered, however, and is still thriving today. It has the distinction of being the oldest area where white porcelain is produced in the whole of northeastern Japan.
The origins of Shinshu Tsumugi go back to a silk cloth called ashiginu that was woven in the Nara period (710-794). Because of the rivalry and encouragement that the clans in the province of Shinshu were given, sericulture was very popular and the production of pongee throughout the province flourished, and every year large quantities of cloth were dispatched to Kyoto.
Yuntanza Hana-ui Fabrics
Although it is uncertain actually when, some people think that this type of weaving came from the South because of its very particular floral designs. What is certain, however, is that the cloth was being produced in the 15th century because records show that gifts of this figured cloth were sent to Korea.There are also records of the cloth being presented to the King of Ryukyu from Java.
Records exist showing that an Akama Suzuri was offered at the Tsuruoka Hachimangu Shrine in Kamakura at the beginning of the Kamakura period (1185-1333). By the middle of the Edo period (1600-1868) these inkstones were being sold up and down the country.
Beppu Bamboo Basketry
The making of bamboo baskets for sale by travelling peddlers during the Muromachi period (1392-1573), marked the beginnings of this craft.
Katsuyama Bamboo Basketry
Essentially speaking, Katsuyama Take Zaiku started at the beginning of the 19th century but became an established area of production at the end of the Edo Period (1600-1868), when baskets known as harisouke were made. These are thought to be associated with souke and meshizouke baskets that are still being made today and form the main bulk of production, which maintains the standards of a practical craft product throughout.
Kyoto Art Dolls
It is though that dolls were first made in the belief that any evil that might affect a child would instead afflict the doll. As time went by such dolls as amagatsu and houko evolved into what became the prototype of hina dolls with which children of imperial and noble families played during the Heian period (794-1185).