Kyoto Folding Fans
Folding fans date back to the beginning of the Heian period (794-1185). It is thought that the first ones were shaped very much like the fans we know today but they were made out of several thin leaves of wood tied together. These fans were called hi-ogi because they were made out of hinoki or Japanese cypress (Chamaecyparis obtusa).
While dating back to the 8th century, the weaving of this cloth did not become firmly established in this area of Yamagata Prefecture until the beginning of the 17th century. This was when Uesugi Keisho, the lord of the fief, encouraged its weaving.
Ojiya Ramie Crepe
The history of linen weaving in Ojiya goes back a very long time. A piece of pottery which is thought to have been made at the end of the Jomon period (ca.10000-ca.200 BC) has been discovered bearing the imprint of some woven fabric. Well suited to the climate of Ojiya, woven linen was valued highly and was presented to the Shogun.
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.