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.

Traveling Exhibitions

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

The yuzuriha (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,

Tsugaru kogin sashiko)

Obi broad sash, bags, tapestry, pouches for small objects, dish towels, textile objects

Sakiori (Rewoven textiles using recycled fabric)

Clothing, bags, tapestry, small decorative objects

Homespun Items

Hats, scarves, stoles, clothing, etc.

Braided Items (Made from crimson glory vines, akebi vines, walnuts, painted maples, suzutake

bamboo, and madake 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

decorative objects

Kettle handles: Iron kettle handles, candelabra, objects

Metal carving: Accessories

Leatherworking (harness making)

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, Nanbu shikon dyeing, itajime splashed pattern cloth, amasagi

zennmai pongee (made with waterfowl down and ferns), Akita Hachijo silk, uneaya

textiles, safflower dyeing, mojire textiles, etc.

Japanese Articles

Obi bustles, obi cords, sandals, clogs, umbrellas, bags, etc.

Dyed and Woven Articles by Tohoku Artisans

Stoles, tapestry, blankets, clothing, etc.