Thursday, December 21, 2006

Pussy Party

猫のパーティ

'Cats Keeping Warm': Pussy Parties, from GoodsFromJapan.As in the West, the image of cats in the East is imbued with a charm that goes beyond most other domestic animals - sometimes on the darker side, but more often on the happy, the lucky and the delightful.


Ms Chizuko Hayashi of Sendai City in the north-west of Honshu is the director of nothing less than the Neko Jimusho, or 'Cat Office'. Here she loving sculpts 'Pussy Parties': intricately painted tiny cats out of styrene that she then arranges in unforgettably touching handcrafted scenes of feline jollity, intimacy and fun.

'Cats on the Desk': Pussy Parties, from GoodsFromJapan.
Each fanciful 12cm (4¾")-square 'Pussy Party' makes an ideal gift, especially for children. The loving detail of, for example, the tiny photograph album - each of the dozen pages featuring an actual, miniscule, photo - that the cats might be poring over in one scene, is matched by the interactivity of the painstakingly crafted desk of the cats writing haiku poetry, with its openable and closable little drawers.

Furthermore, each 'Pussy Party' is unique. Although the themes are set, Ms. Hayashi applies her imagination to each one as she works, working within the genre to produce an irreplacable original for each customer. These striking but simple concoctions of color, texture, detail - not to mention plain feline magic - make each and any of these whimsical handmade slices of happy cat-life from Japan a lifelong favorite of any lucky receiver.


'Cats on the Table': Pussy Party, from GoodsFromJapan. Add to that, solid handcrafted quality: hand-decorated styrene cats, natural wood, paper, fabric and, for that unmistakable Japanese touch, a tatami rush mat base.

Buy 'Pussy Party' online now. Rushed to your part of the world from the 'Cat Office', airmail, fully protectively boxed. Purrrrty on!


Saturday, December 09, 2006

Shibori Tie-dye

絞り
Shibori (shaped-resist dyeing) is an historic Japanese craft which involves elaborate stitching before the fabric is dyed, often with natural plant-based dyes such as indigo.

Classic Shibori Design Tablecloth The numerous different techniques of shibori sees the artisan draw up portions of cloth and tie each shape with cotton thread, sometimes a metal hook, wooden pole or shorter dowel is used to tie and bind the cloth.

Each technique produces a different shape and motif; arashi shibori, miura shibori, boshi shibori and kumo shibori are some of the most well-known methods.

GoodsFromJapan's shibori products come from Arimatsu in Aichi Prefecture, which is Japan's leading production center of shibori tie-dye and has been since the 17th century, since Takeda Shokuro, a native of Kyushu, moved to the Arimatsu area in south-east Nagoya as a worker employed building nearby Nagoya Castle.

Choose from our shibori handkerchiefs, shibori noren and shibori tablecloths.


Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Japanese Sun Umbrellas

Japanese Parasol日傘

Traditional Japanese umbrellas were used to fight off the brutal heat of a Japanese summer. (Ironically, they are making a comeback now. Though less artistic, the modern version of a "hi gasa" [sun umbrella] is very popular among young women worried more about the detrimental effects of the sun on their lovely skin.) Made of washi, Japanese paper, and sturdy bamboo, the umbrellas were strong and flexible and effective.

Umbrellas like the one pictured at right can however still be seen, particularly during special occasions such as festivals. And, of course, they are still used by geisha.

These parasols also make wonderful decorative items. Many Japanese now use them at home to liven up a room.

Buy Japanese parasols online


Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Noren Curtains

noren-indigoのれん

Noren curtains are used in both homes and at restaurants. They add a bit of privacy but at the same time allow a peek inside. They also are used to indicate that a business is open.

When preparations are complete prior to opening time, the last thing a restaurant owner does is put up the curtain; at the end of the day/evening, after the cleaning up is finished, the curtain comes down.

Noren can be made from hemp, cotton, and other fabrics.

Some are dyed and intricately woven; others are simple knock-offs. In touristy areas, noren with samurai or geisha are popular.

Buy Noren curtains online

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Electronic Dictionaries

XD-LP7100電子辞書

Simply stated, Japanese makers Canon, Casio, and Seiko make the best electronic dictionaries. From the number and type of dictionaries that are loaded into any model to key reaction—the speed and ease with any key on the keyboard reacts when touched—are world class.

All come with coating for protection against falls and spills. In addition, most models now come with backlights for use on airplanes or at night.

The Casio models in particular have amazing speed and reaction upon touch. Canon are perhaps the most stylish and, in terms of price, the best value.

For a beginner to the specialist, these models are a joy to use.

Buy Electronic Dictionaries online

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Japanese Green Tea

Japanese green tea is becoming increasingly popular in the West as more and more people become aware of its natural health-giving benefits and refreshingly clean taste.

Japanese green tea Japanese green tea contains many nutrients beneficial to your well-being. Medical studies have found that drinking green tea can considerably reduce your risk of hardening of the arteries. It is suggested that drinking one cup of green tea a day can lower your risk by up to 96%.

Furthermore, drinking 4-5 cups of green tea a day may also prevent skin cancer. Epigallocaechin, a polyphenol found in green tea, is linked to prevention of early stages of skin cancer.

Green tea leaves Switching from brown tea and coffee with milk to green tea has also been shown to help with weight loss and ameliorate the symptoms of fatigue.

The main reason to drink Japanese green tea, however, is its refreshingly clean and natural taste.

All our Tombo™ teas are 100% organically grown and hand-picked in Shimane prefecture in the beautiful countryside of south-west Japan.

Our specially selected teas make for an ideal gift for you, your family and friends.

Click here to purchase our organic Tombo™ Teas

Composition of the green tea leaf:
( % of dried leaf )
Polyphenols 37%, carbohydrates 25%, caffeine 3.5%, protein 15%, amino acids 4%, lignin 6.5%, organic acids 1.5%, lipids 2%, ash 5%, chlorophyll 0.5%

Prices: from US$16.99 per pack.

For wholesale orders please Contact us

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Japanese Akari Lampshades

Japanese akari lampshades are made in the studio of Maeda-sensei.

blossom akari lampshade He uses a simple frame and beautiful Japanese paper (washi) to create patterns of light that will enhance any room.

From small shades that sit on the floor or can be hung on a wall, to larger artistic models that amply fill a space.

Takehiro Maeda is a Japanese craftsman who follows the way of the "light," or akari. He apprenticed for four years in Kyoto's weaving district, Nishijin, and now has his own studio.

The lamps are both sturdy and evanescent.

Buy akari made in Japan


Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Tabi

Japanese tabi socks make for excellent indoor and outdoor footwear when worn with sandals.

Japanese tabi socks The split-toe design is supposed to promote health as it improves the circulation of the blood in the feet.

The boot-like design also gives a firm support to the ankles. tabi are sewn together from two pieces of cloth cut to size. They have a split at the back so the foot can be eased in and metal fasteners to close them.

Tabi are perfect footwear when worn in combination with Japanese sandals - zori.

Buy tabi made in Japan


Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Japanese Teasets

Japanese ceramic tea sets are known for their fine quality around the world.

Camellia Tea SetOur fine tea sets are produced in Tokoname just south of Nagoya.

Tokoname is one of the six historic pottery centers (The Six Ancient Kilns) of Japan. The others are: Bizen, Echizen, Seto, Shigaraki and Tamba.

Pottery making has a history of over 900 years in the Tokoname district and tokoname-yaki products from the area have been transported throughout Japan for centuries by sea from this coastal area and location now of the offshore Chubu International Airport.

Tokoname is credited as the birthplace of the distinctive red clay teapot.

Choose from a range of finely glazed and hand-painted Japanese tea-sets.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Large Maneki Neko

招き猫

The Tokoname area south of Nagoya on the Chita Peninsula is famed for its high quality ceramics production. GoodsFromJapan's maneki neko are sourced from this area and we are pleased to present some new maneki neko.

Maneki neko These large size koban neko are 43 cm (17 inches) tall and 25 cm (10 inches) wide.

A koban is a gold coin from ancient Japan.

Maneki neko are good luck charms for prosperity and happiness and are particularly popular in the entrances to businesses and shops.

This cat is available with right or left hand beckoning in black or white.

Maneki neko are also mass-produced in China, but the quality of the ceramic cats remains superior in Japan.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Japanese Bamboo Flutes

The most well-known Japanese bamboo flute overseas is without doubt the shakuhachi and many Western musicians journey to Japan to begin the long journey to master the instrument's seductive sounds.

Buy a Hero bamboo flute from Japan Many other kinds of bamboo flutes are also produced in Japan and have been for centuries.

The art of bamboo flute-making first came to Japan from China in about the 6th century.

Japanese bamboo flutes can be used to play rock and jazz and not just traditional Japanese music and meditation tunes. Many Western artists have integrated the sound of the Japanese flute in to their music.

We offer some of the best hand-crafted Japanese bamboo flutes on the market today - made in Japan with centuries of traditional styling and tuning involved in the flutes' manufacture.

Japanese Kagura Dance Flutes.

A collection of genuine handmade Japanese flutes used in the ritual of the Iwami Kagura dance, a dramatic ritual that originated in the town of Iwami in Shimane prefecture as an appeasement dance for the Shinto gods.

With its long tradition, simply beauty, and pure tone, let the easy-to-play Iwami Kagura flute bring the magic of ancient Japanese dance music to your own fingers, lips and ears.

Prices starting from US$28.99

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Halloween Masks

Japanese traditional masks are ideal for Halloween. Japanese mask-making has a long history and the masks are associated with the ancient legends and myths of the Japanese people. Masks have been used in Japan for rituals, initiation rites and dance performances since as long ago as the Jomon Period (10,000 BC-300BC).

Buy Halloween masks from Japan Elaborate masks are also a part of traditional Japanese dramas and dance such as: Noh, Gigaku, Kyogen and Kagura.

Japanese masks are a mixture of both animal and human faces. As well as a form of disguise, the wearer of a mask takes on the spiritual force of the person or animal represented by the mask.

GoodsFromJapan's hand-crafted papier mache masks include tengu - the mischievous, sexually-suggestive, long-nosed forest spirit, the crafty fox, kitsune, otafuku - the female spirit of joy and happiness and the grotesque hyotoku - the human bellows (seen right).

Japanese Halloween Masks

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Happi Festival Coats

blue happi coatHandmade happi festival coats from the Kyoto studio of Komori available online at GoodsFromJapan.com.

Happi coats evoke a cool fall day, drinking sake and beer, chewing on squid snacks—and carrying a two-ton mikoshi float around the shrine and neighborhood screaming “Wa-shoi! Wa-shoi!”

100% cotton.
It can be worn as a robe or used as a wall description.

Happi Coats.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Japanese Fans

fanHandcrafted fans from the Kyoto studio of Kuraya available at GoodsFromJapan.com.

Kyoto fan and byobu maker Kuraya works out of his atelier near Myoshinji Temple in the western part of the ancient capital. He crafts beautiful, decorative fans and fan stands by hand.

A great gift.

Decorative Fans from Japan.

Handmade and handpainted fans straight from Kyoto.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Eco-Chopsticks

tripstixxEco-chopsticks available at GoodsFromJapan.com.

Eco-chopsticks are perfect for a trip, picnic, or at home. Say goodbye forever to rain-forest destroying wooden chopsticks.

Trippsticks are easy to carry, clean, and use. In your pocket, not the garbage can.

A great gift.

Eco Chopsticks.

Five years of online service, thousands of chopstick-using customers.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Boonchin calligraphy paperweights

文鎮

Boonchin calligraphy paperweightsbunchin (pronounced 'boon-chin') is Japanese for 'paperweight' and refers to the paperweights used in calligraphy.

I have studied Japanese calligraphy and am a keen, if amateur, practictioner of the art of drawing characters in Indian ink. Calligraphy in the East is initimately connected with the art of meditation and expresses the simplicity, patience and release of energy of that stern but liberating practice.

The paperweight is a vital tool in the act of expressing oneself throught the brush. It's intimacy with gravity is the yin to the yang of the spiritual flair that the act of wielding the brush evokes. Calligraphy being, like any art, an expression foremost of individuality, it is therefore fitting that the paperweight itself should be attributed something of a personality.

Whale calligraphy paperweightThe paperweights illustrated above are a selection of the kind used in Japanese calligraphy. The massive, gentleness of the whale, the dophin, expressing nature's affinity with humankind, the tengu: a carnival-like character tied up in the battle of good and evil, the carp: a traditional symbol of strength as it battles upstream to mate, and the gentle, cool, green curves of the cucumber representing the inanimate world's bounty.

All of these are cast in solid beautifully molded iron, some of them subtley colored as well. They feel like quality, resting firmly in your hand, and are of the durability that makes for a long-loved possession - even an heirloom. For all their artistry, quality and craftship they are surprisingly affordable.

Buy genuine Japanese boonchin iron calligraphy paperweights here.

Five years of online service, thousands of satisfied customers.

Paper Lanterns

Geisha Paper LanternBeautiful lanterns available online at GoodsFromJapan.com.

Paper lanterns have been used for centuries in Japan, and continue to be used to this day in daily life. At stores and restaurants, during flea markets and festivals, they are a common and beautiful feature of life in Japan.

Paper Lanterns selection from Japan.

Five years of online service, thousands of satisfied customers.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Koma spinning tops

Spinning tops are thought to have originated in ancient Egypt about 1000 BC and examples of spinning tops have also been found in Greece dating from 700 BC.

Japanese spinning top - koma

Most countries in the world have some tradition of spinning tops.

In Japan they are known as koma 独楽, are usually made of wood and have reached a very high degree of craftship and spinning sophistication over the years. It can be assumed that the spinning top came to Japan from China where they are known as tsa lin. Japanese tops are considered some of the very best in the world with new and inventive designs coming out each year.

Our koma spinning tops are made from wood native to Japan, and are painted by hand.

Great as toys, decorations, or as a collector's item.

koma - spinning tops online exclusively at GoodsFromJapan.com.

100% Non-toxic materials.

Saturday, September 30, 2006

Gundam Kits & Models

Mobile Suit Gundam was originally an animated sci-fic tv series which first aired in Japan in 1979.

According to the official Bandai Gundam website: "the traditional giant robots of Japanese anime were for the first time portrayed as realistic war machines instead of invincible superheroes."

Mobile Suit Gundam

As the Gundam brand expanded into movies and more TV series such as G Gundam and Gundam Wing, there are now six different Gundam worlds, each with its own "unique history and society".

Gundam came to the USA in 1998 and is still going strong there as well as gaining new fans in Germany, the UK, France, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Korea and other parts of Asia. Our Gundam models and kits are the most up-to-date 100% originals made in and delivered from Japan.

Note: These figures are meant for children above the age of 10. They contain removable pieces.


Gundam Kits & Models.

Gundam DVDs


For wholesale orders or other quality goods from Japan click here: GoodsFromJapan.

Bandai Official Gundam site

Friday, September 29, 2006

Japanese Carp Streamers

taro-okamotoBrilliantly colored carp streamers from the Picasso of Japan: Taro Okamoto.

Carp Streamers.

Great as a lawn decoration or for a dormitory.

For wholesale orders or other quality goods from Japan click here: GoodsFromJapan.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Buddhist Statuary

buddhist-statuaryHandmade Buddhist statuary carved in Japan by artisans.

Buddhist Statuary.

Just the thing for your home or as a gift. Made from white fir and other native species.

For wholesale orders or other quality goods from Japan click here: GoodsFromJapan.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Bonsai Clippers

mini-clippers Japan’s artistic miniature plants—that are so tiny yet so grand. Tools and plants.

Bonsai plants and tools.

Perfect for inside or outside work.

For wholesale orders or other quality goods from Japan click here: GoodsFromJapan.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Tatami mats

Surely one of the greatest delights of visiting Japan is the experience of walking, sitting, playing, eating and sleeping on soft tatami mats.

Tatami mats are made of straw and have been around in Japan since the 11th or 12th centuries when they were the preserve of the court and nobility.

tatami

Tatami came in to widespread use by ordinary people in the 15th and 16th centuries.

Nowadays many modern Japanese houses may not have even one tatami room as they have fallen out of fashion to be replaced by hard wooden flooring.

The outer layer of the tatami mat (called omote or goza) is made from soft reeds and is woven together with hemp or cotton twine. The inner straw core or omote is made from crushed straw (though this has been largely replaced in modern homes with a polystyrene board). Finally, the edge of the mat (eri) is made from cloth and can come in a variety of colors and designs and used to denote the rank of the owner.

Tatami mats have decided health benefits as well as adding a natural, light touch to your room. The mats absorb heat and the natural smell and soft feel helps to calm and relax the mind.

Tatami look great in Western homes placed over carpet or wooden floor boards. They make an ideal, clean surface in living rooms and bedrooms for everything from everyday use to children's play, yoga and meditation.

Our tatami mats come in a range of sizes and 2 qualities: Standard tatami and Premium tatami

For wholesale orders or other quality goods from Japan click here: GoodsFromJapan.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Tokyo Game Show

The Tokyo Game Show takes place from September 22-24 at Makuhari Messe, Chiba. The event is Asia's biggest video game software and hardware event.

Sony's PlayStation 3 is the star of the show. The new console is due for domestic release in Japan November 11 and in the USA November 17. The release date for Europe has been set back.

The show is open to the public today and tomorrow. Other highlights in this year's 10th anniversary show are new games for mobile phones with Vodafone, NTT DoCoMo and KDDI the big players.

148 companies (with a record 51 from overseas) are participating in the event which expects to draw 160,000 visitors.

Access

Makuhari Messe in Chiba is equidistant from downtown Tokyo and Narita Airport. Take the JR Keiyo Line from Tokyo Station (30 minutes).

2-1 Nakase, Mihama-ku
Chiba-shi, 261-0023
Tel: 043 296 0001
Makuhari Messe

For wholesale orders or other quality goods from Japan click here: GoodsFromJapan.

Ichiro Happi Coats

ichiro Happi CoatThe best lead-off hitter in baseball. The magician of swat: Ichiro Suzuki. The pint-sized slugger from Nagoya. A great coat.

For more baseball happi coats.

Comfortable and stylish.

For wholesale orders or other quality goods from Japan click here: GoodsFromJapan.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Origami Kits

15 origamiMemories of fifth grade art class or a gift from grandmother back from a group tour to Kyoto. And simple and beautiful.

For origami kits.

Origami kits for the whole family. Easy and fun to do with English instructions.

For wholesale orders, other kits, or other quality goods from Japan click here: GoodsFromJapan.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Electronic Dictionaries

The lowest prices, the best models, the most reliable delivery.

For Canon, Casio, Sharp, and Seiko Japanese-English, Japanese-Chinese, Japanese-Korean, Japanese-French and many more types of electronic dictionary.

GoodsFromJapan has made a name for itself already as the site for these dictionaries. Order yours now and it's on the way.

For wholesale orders or models not listed on GoodsFromJapan, please contact our Sales staff.

Japan Search Service

Looking for a particular product from Japan?

From Sony to sushi replicas GFJ can source it for you.

Click here for more information on our Japan search and buy service

Technorati Profile