A vase with a beautiful harmony of blue and clear glass
Hideaki Shinozaki, a traditional craftsman who puts new ideas into traditional techniques, has painstakingly designed and cut this vase.
The gentle form of this vase, with its rounded jade cuts and star shape, evokes an image of outer space.
The exquisite Edo kiriko work, in which the skill of a master craftsman shines through, adds a mysterious color to beautiful flowers.
It is a perfect gift for your loved ones.
|Country of origin||Ibaraki, Japan|
|Technique||EDO CUT GLASS|
|Size||W1.81 * H7.09 in. (W4.6 * H18cm)|
|Electronic Equipment||Microwave x, Dishwasher x, Oven x, Direct flame x, Induction x|
|Note||Name engraving is not available.
Do not use metal scrubbers, cleansers, or bleach.
Caution against damage due to sudden temperature changes.
Do not stack.
|Delivery Time||1-2 weeks (if out of stock + 1-2 weeks)|
Japanese Tradition Engraved in the Finest Crystal
- Est. 1934
- Edo Kiriko (Cut Glass) Crystal Glass
- Hidetoshi Mochizuki
The First Crystal Glass Maker in Japan
Kozo Kagami, the founder of Kagami Crystal, went to study crystal glass manufacturing in Germany in 1927. He returned to Japan in 1930 and established the “Kagami Crystal Glass Crafting Laboratory” in Tokyo, beginning to create glass products. In 1934, he went on to found Japan’s first crystal glass factory.
In order to realize the pinnacle beauty of crystal glass, he relentlessly pursued the techniques he brought home from Germany. The products born from his inquisitive mind and creativity received a multitude of accolades, including Silver Prize at the Paris World's Fair and an honorary award at the New York World's Fair. His work pushed the craft of glass into an artform.
Kagami Crystal glassware, created from these masterful techniques, was recognized as official products of the Imperial Household Agency and were supplied to places like the prime minister’s official residence and Akasaka Palace.
In 1990, the company headquarters and factory were moved to Ibaraki Prefecture, and in 1997, their products received a designation as a Local Handicraft of Ibaraki Prefecture. These masterful techniques and top-tier quality, painstakingly cultivated since the company’s founding, have become widely known both in Japan and throughout the world.
Polishing Traditional Skills and Connecting Them to the Future
Kagami Crystal uses materials carefully selected by experienced craftspeople. Their crystal glassware boasts an extremely high level of transparency with an elegant gleam and clear tone without any blemishes.
They employ two techniques to cast glass. One is by putting glass wound around a blowpipe into a mold and blowing air into it to shape it (mold-blowing). Another shapes the glass by holding the blowpipe in the mouth and blowing without a mold (free-blowing). In addition, “irokise” crystal glass is made by covering the transparent crystal glass surface with a thin layer of colored crystal glass.
The gravure engraving technique, which Kozo Kagami enthusiastically learned in Germany, uses copper wheel engraving to carve patterns into the surface of glass with a disk-shaped grinder. These advanced techniques are great at producing gloss and blur. Cutting is performed with a grinder to whittle the surface of the glass to create geometric patterns.
Kagami Crystal has incorporated the cutting techniques learnt from the founder with Edo Kiriko, which has been passed down without interruption since the Edo period. Their pieces are made by their own glass cutters together with Edo Kiriko traditional craftspeople.
They strive to combine Edo period aesthetics with new innovations and come up with fresh, never-before-seen designs. They aim to create products whose adoration passes the test of time.
Message to Customers
Crystal Glass Brimming with Passion and Traditional Technique
Since their founding, the crystal glass manufacturing methods nurtured by Kozo Kagami have been passed down to Kagami Crystal craftspeople together with his beliefs in authentic craftsmanship. Techniques brought back from Germany by the founder were further honed by Japanese craftspeople, who are renowned for their abilities to do delicate, intricate work.
They hope that the stunning, fine patterns engraved in the crystal glass allow you to feel the beauty of Japan. They wish for customers to hold and touch their products and experience their passion for craftsmanship through the gleam of crystal glass.
Kagami Crystal feels pride as Japan’s pioneering crystal glass maker. They will continue to protect and polish these traditional techniques and forever strive to add radiance to everyday life.
Awards by Kozo Kagami 1937 Silver Prize Paris World’s Fair
1939 Honorary Award New York World's Fair
1958 Grand Prize Brussels World’s Fair
1960 Japan Art Academy Award
How Japanese Products Can Be Such High Quality
The Reason Japan Can Produce So Many High-Quality Products
To put it simply, it’s because they found a way to produce exceptional products with high efficiency, resulting in surprisingly low prices.
The Japanese Drive for Perfection
The Japanese always seek perfection in both the production process and the products themselves.
As such, the Japanese production process aims to eliminate waste and inefficiencies while guaranteeing quality by having craftspeople inspect their own products and constantly strive to make improvements.
Ingenuity Stemming from the Spirit of “Omotenashi” and “Kikubari”
The Japanese excel at creating and improving things because of their devotion to the ideas of hospitality and attentiveness, known as “omotenashi” and “kikubari” respectively. These ideas push them to uncover, predict, and fulfill their customers’ every need.
This earnestness, as well as how they spare no effort when it comes to offering their customers the very best, is reflected in the products Japan produces.
Trustworthy Suppliers That Deliver On All Fronts
One product is often the result of various organizations joining forces and combining their skills and capabilities.
Japanese suppliers are known for their dedication to delivering high-quality materials, parts, and products on schedule, and it’s thanks to their efforts that Japan can produce such high-quality goods.
The Japanese Are the World’s Most Discerning and Demanding Customers
Many Japanese people have traveled and experienced shopping around the world. This has given them a much more discerning eye for judging the quality of products.
The standards of Japanese people are very high. They are finely tuned not just to the quality, safety, design, and novelty of products, but also to their visual appearance such as their packaging and wrapping.
Made-in-Japan products keep improving in quality in order to meet the rigorous standards of their domestic clientele.
Japan Is Home to Many Long-Established Companies
According to an international survey, Japan has the highest number of companies that have been established over a century ago. In fact, the grand total of 33,076 of such Japanese companies accounts for 41.3% of the total worldwide number of 80,066. The US takes second place with 19,497 companies (24.4%) and Sweden comes in third with 13,997 (17.5%).
Japan also has the highest number of companies that are more than two centuries old, being home to 1,340 such companies, which account for 65.0% of the global total of 2,051. The US takes second place with 239 companies (11.6%), Germany comes in third with 201 (9.8%), and the UK places fourth with 83 (4.0%).
So, Japan is able to produce so many high-quality goods because it’s home to the highest number of long-established companies that have been passing down their knowledge and technical prowess through the generations.
*Source: Based on data from Teikoku Databank and Bureau Van Dijk’s orbis (as of October 2019).
What Makes Traditional Japanese Crafts High Quality
Traditional crafts are the amalgamation of Japanese culture.
“Traditional crafts” is the general term used for crafts that are produced using processes and techniques that have been passed down through generations. In Japan, this includes textiles, dyed goods, ceramics, lacquerware, woodwork, washi Japanese paper, dolls, items for Buddhist rituals, and other goods that enrich our everyday lives.
Traditional crafts are associated with the concept of “the beauty of use”, which refers to products and skills that become easier to use and approach perfection the longer they come into contact with people.
Currently, it is believed that there are approximately 1,300 different types of traditional crafts in Japan.
Among these, 236 crafts have been officially designated as “traditional Japanese crafts” by the Japanese Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry (as of January 2021).
The main criteria for being recognized as a traditional Japanese craft:
Key Parts of the Production Process Must Be Done by Hand
Traditional Japanese crafts do not have to be entirely handmade, but the underlying process that brings out the product’s unique and distinctive characteristics, such as their quality, form, and design, must be handcrafted.
This guarantees that every traditional Japanese craft is, at its core, a product of human hands, meaning that its size and shape have been designed with human comfort in mind. It also makes the crafts much safer.
The Skills and Techniques Used to Make It Must Be Passed Down for Over 100 Years
The Japanese believe that a technique or a skill can only be considered reliable and complete after it’s been refined through trial and error and constant improvements by numerous craftspeople over a period of at least 100 years.
Skills are closely related to the capability of each craftsperson and precision, and they are something that an individual can refine. Techniques, on the other hand, are associated with the historical accumulation of knowledge, including everything from the selection of raw materials to the production process.
All this said, modern craftspeople don’t just mimic the techniques of the past. Rather, they’re continuously coming up with improvements and developing new ways of doing things without fundamentally changing what makes traditional Japanese crafts unique.
The Skills and Techniques Used to Make It Must Be Passed Down for Over 100 Years
As we can see, the secret to the high quality of made-in-Japan products is the drive of Japanese people for perfection, the adherence to their unique philosophy of hospitality, and their discerning eye that can’t be matched.
Traditional Japanese crafts are one level above normal made-in-Japan products, as they must also meet rigorous criteria such as being handcrafted or made using skills and techniques that have been passed down for at least a century.
Thanks to all of the above, Japanese products have become famous for their high quality all over the world.