Sunday, 17 July 2011

National symbol flowers of Japan - Part 1 Sakura

Sakura - Cherry blossom flower

Japan has two national flowers: the cherry blossom and chrysanthemum, wich is the imperial family's crest.

Sakura from Kyoto
by Danann_1

the cherry blossom is a flower of spring which has been loved by Japanese since ancient time.When they are full bloom and then fall, they are indescribably beautiful.

Sakura from Kyoto
by Danann_1

Any of numbers of deciduous trees of the family rosaceae that grow wild in mountainous areas throughout Japan and are also widely cultivated. The word Sakura is generally used for those species of cherry appreciated for the beauty of their blossoms rather than those grown for their fruit.

Sakura in Tokyo
by Miura-san

The wood is used for fine furniture, carving, and woodblock printing.

The Sakura is mentioned frequently in Japanese literature.It ia been reported to betraditional Japanese values of purity and simplicityare thought to be reflected in the form and color of its blossoms.Since it flowers very briefly and then scatters, the cherry blossom has also become a symbol of the Japanese appreciation of ephemeral beauty.

Hanami - Cherry blossom viewing parties were popular among the Japanese nobility in ancient times, and by the early 17th century the custom had spread to the common people. Picnicking and drinking sake with family, friends and co-workers beneath flowering cherry trees remains a popular rite of springtime even in actual Japan.

This video was made by my friend Iitani-san in Tamba city in Hyougo prefecture.

Popular spots for Hanami - Cherry blossoms-viewing Yoshinoyama in Nara, Arashiyama in Kyoto, Ueno, Sumidagawa, Koganei and Asukayama in Tokyo.

I went to Kyoto, Kanazawa and Takaoka for Sakura... Kenroku-en in Kanazawa is also a beautiful place for Sakura viewing.

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

My friend the Japanese bag maker - Hideaki Iitani

Hello everyone,

    I want to share with  you a discovery I  made some  time ago.

I have a  friend who is  a
designer & maker  of Japanese style bag.

 My  friend name is  Hideaki Iitani he was  born on  February 17, 1968 and  lives in Hyougo  city, Japan.  He  studied and graduated  in Art at Musashino University in  1998.

Hyougo has a  great reputation  for his  artisan’s bags.
Iitani-san’s Family is  in wholesale business of
  bag  made by  artisans in their  region.
-san has started helping his sister  and brother-in law in family business  and learned  to make bag  under the keen  eye of a master.

He is designing bags for the last  3 years. He uses  materials such  as crepe, cotton printed  in Japanese pattern and  leather. All bags  are handmade by Iitani-san and  other local artisans.

If you wish to buy some of his bags please contact me by  EMAIL

Monday, 14 March 2011


If you wish to help and save Japan...

Traditions in Japan will contribute a part of our earnings to the Japanese Red Cross Society for each goods you will buy from us. 

Japanese people are disparately in need of FOOD… FUEL… BABIES MILK… DIAPPERS….
Photo de Japonation

Many shelter and refuges are short of water and many other essentials goods.

All victims are now at a very high peak of stress.

Please help us to help them.
Let’s help Japan!!!


Hello everyone,

You can read about Japan's tsunami everywhere I have post also some information here:

You can help people here Google have created a  place to make donation:

2011 Japanese Earthquake and Tsunami

To offer a shelter to some victims of the Tsunami or Eathquake. (Within Japan please)

Please contact here:

Homes offered in Japan

I have contacted the Japanese ambassy in here to know how we can help more.
I will come back to you very soon with more details.

In Canada, you can help Japan in here:

Its is cold there now in Japan people need food and water and place to stay.

Make a good action!!!


Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Japanese House - Minka style

Minka is the general name for traditional-style house of none ruling classes.

It is simple house that was made before the western architecture comes to influence the Japanese construction. Minka in farming village are called “Nouka” (農家) that means farmhouse, in the cities it is called “Machiya” (町屋) that means townhouse and you have the “Gyoka” (魚家) in fishing village.
Gokayama's Minka (Nouka) by Hanaemon

These houses are made of wood and were using thick beams and columns for the structure as well as for the walls, floor, ceiling and roof. Bamboo was layered between columns as laths and plastered over with clay to form walls. Clay was also baked to make roof tiles. Grass was used to make thatch for roofing, and straw was used for the coarse, thin mushiro matting and tatami mats to be used on the floor. Rock was used to lay stone foundations for support but was not employed for walls.

You can see some Minka (Machiya):

Following Minka are located in an area called Takashiba Deko Yashiki. 
Deko means doll in English. 
Deko Yashiki is one of sightseeing spot in Koriyama city in Fukushima prefecture where one of my good friend is living. 

Koriyama's Minka "Machiya" by Itagaki-san

Inside the Koriyama's Minka "Machiya"
collection of tansu by Itagaki-san

Inside the Koriyama's Minka "Machiya" main room by Itagaki-san

Koriyama's Minka "Machiya" by Itagaki-san
  You can also see some beautiful Minka "Nouka" in Gokayama city in Toyama prefecture.

Gokayama Village's Minka "Nouka" by me

Gokayama Minka's village "Nouka" by me

Gokayama village's Minka "Nouka" by me
You can also see some beautiful Minka "Nouka" in Shirakawa-go in Gifu prefecture.

Minka "Nouka" in Shirakawa go in Gifu prefecture.
Minka's roof named Kayabuki yane.

Minka's roof in Shirakawa.

How is Minka's roof done.
 Next time article about Minka I will show you the inside of Minka.

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Nanakusa - "Seven Spring Herbs"

Nanakusa refers to either of two sets of seven herbs: one is consisting of the seven herbs of the springs "Haru no nanakusa" and the other one refers to the seven herbs of autumn "Aki no nanakusa".

Nanakusa gayu

January 7th is the day of Nanakusa or Jinjitsu no Sekku.

It is on this day which "Nanakusa gayu" rice porridge with seven spring herbs is eaten.
The Seven Spring Herbs consist of:
  • Japanese parsley (seri)
  • Shepherd’s purse (nazuna)
  • Cudweed (gogyou)
  • Chickweed (hakobera)
  • Henbit (hotokenoza)
  • Turnip (suzuna)
  • Japanese radish. (suzushiro)

    The belief is if you eat this porridge you will stay healthy the whole year.
Nanakusa gayu

The Seven autumn Herbs consist of:
  • Japanese bush clover (Hagi)
  • Eulalia (Suzuki)
  • Kudzu vine (Kuzu)
  • Fringed Pink (Nadeshiko)
  • a perennial herb of the family Valerianaceae (Ominaeshi)
  • Boneset (Fujibakama)
  • Chinese bell flowers (Asagao or Kikyou)

The Nanakusa Kouro (Incense burner) design on the surface is the seven autumn flowers (aki no nanakusa). This flower arrangement is use at the time of  O'Bon Festival and moon-viewing festivities.

These seven autumn flowers are making a very beautiful flowers arrangement to enjoy in pure simplicity.

You can find the Nanakusa kouro in here