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.

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