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Karakami is a type of paper that was introduced from China during the Heian period (794-1185).
At that time, it was used by the aristocracy as paper for writing waka poems.
It began to be used for fusuma (sliding doors) around the Azuchi-Momoyama period (1573-1603) and spread to the general public, where it is still used for fusuma and interior decorations today.
The origin of Karagen as a manufacturer of karakami paper dates back to the Kan'ei era (1624-1645), when the company "Karashichi" was founded by Koizumi Shichigoro.
Later, Shichigoro's grandson, Genjiro, founded Karagen, which continues to this day.
I have been certified as a nationally selected preservation skill holder certification, and I believe this is because the history and techniques of karakami have been recognized.
However, now the demand for fusuma has decreased and the number of karakami craftsmen has also decreased.
I started making small items in order to preserve the important traditions and techniques and to let people know the quality of karakami.
Unlike fusuma (sliding doors), small items are smaller in size, but the techniques for making karakami are the same for both fusuma and small items.
Through the production of small items, I hope to preserve the goodness and techniques of karakami for future generations.
Karakami is made by hand, one sheet at a time.
Pigments are mixed according to the characteristics of the washi (Japanese paper) paper to be used and the temperature and humidity of the day.
The techniques of woodblock printing, in which paint is applied to a woodblock and printed by hand, and paper dyeing, in which paper is dyed with a brush, are used.
Karakami is generally used as fusuma for interior decoration, but Karagen also produces postcards, petit bags, and other small items that make karakami more accessible and enjoyable.
Even though it was decorative, karakami initially spread as paper that made writing look beautiful.
Why not write a letter to your loved one or write a few words on a petit bag? I think you can feel the quality of karakami more than you can see it with your eyes.
However, to be honest, it is more expensive than mass-produced products.
However, if you actually see and touch the product, you will be convinced.
Please touch and see for yourself how good it is.
Nowadays, many houses do not have fusuma (sliding doors), and karakami may have become unfamiliar.
However, the beauty created by traditional techniques and the warmth of handmade karakami can not only be conveyed through fusuma.
If the fusuma have left you, let karakami come closer to you.
These small items were created with this in mind.
For example, a red stamp book (Japanese binding notebook) can be used not only to receive red stamps, but also to collect stamps at roadside stations, or to make an album with photos and messages.
Petit bags and celebratory gift bags can be a chic gift by putting your feelings on the warmth of karakami.
I hope that you will be able to feel the goodness of karakami in a more familiar and casual way.
2017 nationally selected preservation skill holder certification
2019 Order of the Rising Sun
2020 Yashio City Excellent Engineer / Skilled Person
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