During the first half of the 18th century, Tokugawa Muneharu was the seventh in the line of leaders of the Owari clan controlling an area centered on present-day Nagoya. It was a time when the culture of the clan was flourishing and craftsmen of many types visited the area from Kyoto and elsewhere. It was then that the techniques of yuzen dyeing were introduced to the area.
Amakusa Pottery and Porcelain
In the old fief of Amakusa on the island of Kyushu, the village headmen encouraged the people throughout the fief to try and support themselves by making pottery and from the early 17th century and on into the 18th century, both pottery and porcelain were being produced in the province.
Hida Shunkei Lacquer Ware
The origins of this distinctive lacquer ware were the result of a chance discovery. At the beginning of the 17th century, a head carpenter who worked on the building of temples and shrines in the castle town of Takayama, was surprised to find that when he literally peeled a piece of sawara cypress apart, it produced an interesting textural effect. He made it up into a tray and lightly lacquered the surfaces.
About 1763, Morita Motozo who lived in the province of Iwami learned how to make pottery from a potter from present-day Yamaguchi prefecture, and he began making small items such as lipped bowls and sake flasks. Some 20 years later, it seems that much larger pieces of pottery such as water jars found their way into the area from present-day Okayama prefecture and these were also made.
Satsuma was one of the old provinces occupying what is now the western part of Kagoshima Prefecture at the southern end of Kyushu. Forces from Satsuma invaded Ryukyu in 1609 and the compulsory weaving of Yaeyama Jofu to pay a poll tax that was levied, in turn led to an improvement of techniques.
During the Edo period (1600-1868), many farmers found life very difficult. When there was no farm work, peasants went off in search of work to the Kumano district in Kishu corresponding to present-day Wakayama and the Yoshino area of Yamato, which is now Nara Prefecture. On returning to their homelands they sold writing brushes and ink they had acquired from these places. Ultimately, this led to the making of brushes in Kumano.
Kiso Lacquer Ware
It was the beginning of the 17th century when this craft got its start, very much founded on the plentiful supplies of local Japanese cypress for the production of carcasses for goods rich in local color. Subsequently the craft developed under firm patronage from the Owari Tokugawa clan through the Edo Period (1603-1868) and this craft became popular with those travelling along the Nakasendo Highway.
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.
Kyoto Black Dyeing
Although the dyeing of cloth black has a very long history dating back to the 10th century, it seems that it was not until the 17th century that it became established as a recognized craft to include family crests.
Tokyo Yuzen Dyeing
By the 18th century, Edo was the center of political power of the Shogunate and the culture and economy of this metropolis that later became Tokyo flourished.
Kishu Herazao are fishing rods for catching crucian carp created by master rod craftsmen.
It seems likely that Echigo Chijimi's ikat techniques became established during the first half of the 18th century. However, it was not until the latter part of the 19th century that they were used for weaving a silk cloth, after a warp ikat had been successfully perfected.