Handcrafted Items to Enrich Your Life
Craft Shop Yuzuriha was established next to Lake Towada in Aomori Prefecture in 1989 to
introduce handicrafts, primarily those born from the forbidding climate of the northern
Tohoku region (Aomori, Akita, and Iwate Prefectures) as well as the other Tohoku
prefectures of Yamagata, Miyagi, and Fukushima. In addition to the items themselves,
descriptions are provided of the circumstances around which the items evolved,
augmented with comments and anecdotes from the artisans.
The products on display range from traditional items that have remained unchanged over
the years to those sporting new designs reflecting modern sensibilities. In addition to
baskets, bags, clothing, small decorative objects, and tableware, the shop also features
furniture like tables and chairs, as well as kimonos that are unique to the Tohoku region.
Visit Yuzuriha when traveling to Lake Towada or other destinations in northern Japan for
the perfect souvenir?both for yourself and your loved ones?created with loving care by
artisans born and raised in the natural beauty and bounty of northern Japan.
In order that as many people as possible may learn about the handicrafts of the Tohoku
region, Yuzuriha regularly organizes traveling exhibitions throughout Japan. One aim of
these exhibitions is to prompt more people to reexamine and gain a deeper appreciation
of the handicrafts and indigenous cultures of their own local communities
Origins of the Shop’s Name
Theyuzuriha (meaning “deferring leaf ”) is a deciduous tree of the genus Daphniphyllum
whose leaves do not fall in the autumn or winter but stay on until the spring, when they
“defer” to new leaves. It is considered an auspicious plant and is used in New Year
decorations. It is the shop’s wish that much like the plant, the handicrafts of former
generations are also sustained until a new generation of artisans is ready to take their place.
Themes of Major Exhibitions Organized to Date
“The Blessings of Tohoku Handicrafts Exhibition”
“Tohoku’s Woodwork Exhibition”
“Japan’s Work Tools Exhibition”
“Ryo: Ways to Enjoy the Summer Heat”
“Exhibition of Two Major Primitive Cloths”
“Tohoku’s Dyed Textiles Exhibition”
“Items That Linger in the Heart”
“Exhibition of Japan’s Three Major Sashiko Embroidery”
“The Sounds of Northern Looms: The Kimonos of Tohoku Exhibition”
Handicraft Items at Yuzuriha
Wood handicrafts: Furniture, doors & screens, tables & chairs, toys, tableware, bags, etc.
Buna(beech) items: Lamps, home wear, etc.
Mage wappa(Akita cedar boxes): Rice containers, lunch boxes, tea ceremony utensils, etc.
Kaniwa(white birch) handicrafts: Tea canisters, boxes for accessories, Japanese sandals, etc.
Tubs and barrels: Barrels, vases, stacked meal boxes, cups, tableware, etc.
Sashiko Embroidery(Nanbu hishizashi [diamond-shaped] sashiko, Shonai (Yuza) sashiko,
Obibroad sash, bags, tapestry, pouches for small objects, dish towels, textile objects
Sakiori(Rewoven textiles using recycled fabric)
Clothing, bags, tapestry, small decorative objects
Hats, scarves, stoles, clothing, etc.
Braided Items(Made from crimson glory vines, akebi vines, walnuts, painted maples, suzutake
bamboo, andmadake bamboo)
Hand-held baskets, Western-style baskets,oboki, containers, vases, lunch boxes
Lacquer Ware(Tsugaru lacquer, Joho-ji lacquer, Kawatsura lacquer, Appi lacquer, Aizu lacquer)
Soup bowls and other utensils, accessories, bags, small decorative objects, furniture,
sandals & clogs, etc.
Nanbu ironware: Iron kettles, tea ceremony utensils, plates for sweets, containers, small
Kettle handles: Iron kettle handles, candelabra, objects
Metal carving: Accessories
Bags, desk ware, accessories
Ceramics(Kokuji ware, Noda ware, Akita ware, etc.)
Ceramic items: Plates, vases, objects
Glass cups, containers, vases
Dolls(Sagaratsuchi dolls, Tsukimoushi dolls, Miharu dolls)
Dolls of the Tohoku region: Toys,hina (imperial) dolls, etc.
Tohoku Kimonos(kimonos and obi)
Sashiko, sakiori, shifu(paper fabric), shinafu (linden fabric), ramie textiles, ancient pattern
dyeing, natural dyes, Yoneryu pongee, Oitama pongee (including Nagai pongee),
Shirataka pongee, Nanbushikon dyeing, itajime splashed pattern cloth, amasagi
zennmaipongee (made with waterfowl down and ferns), Akita Hachijo silk, uneaya
textiles, safflower dyeing,mojire textiles, etc.
Obibustles, obi cords, sandals, clogs, umbrellas, bags, etc.
Dyed and Woven Articles by Tohoku Artisans
Stoles, tapestry, blankets, clothing, etc.