Japanese Tea Caddy Sakura Bark - Documentary


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Japanese Tea Caddy Sakura Bark - Documentary

Postby achyle » Jul 15th, '12, 20:54

I wanted to share with you guys this lovely and rare documentary.
Japanese Master making a tea caddy made of sakura bark (cherry wood) in the town of kakunodate, Akita pref.
Here’s a description from Artistic Nippon on this craft:
Sakura bark products were first crafted as a sideline by Samurai living in Kakunodate, Akita-pref. (Northern Honshu island) approx. 200 years ago. The craft has been passed down through the generations and is still practised today. The color of sakura bark gets deeper and more lustrous the more it is used. The best way to conserve these items' beauty is to use them on a daily basis. (See care instructions at lower part of the sakura bark section)
A dvd was included with the tea caddies that I purchased about a year ago from this shop: http://motomaruya.com/SHOP/62739/83375/list.html I used a proxy to help me with the purchase.
More shops:
http://www.gekkanbijutsu.co.jp/shop/10012501.htm
http://www.ldt.co.jp/kaba/cha/index.html

I think there are different grades of tea caddies, some have better finishing and it requires a lot of skills.
Enjoy the video and the music! :mrgreen:
http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xs5z4u ... rch_algo=1
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Re: Japanese Tea Caddy Sakura Bark - Documentary

Postby fnord » Jul 16th, '12, 13:16

Thanks for sharing :) great links !!!
i was looking for such tea caddies without sucess for some time.
Really nice tea caddies in the links you posted,unfortunatly the ones i like the most are a bit out of my price range...
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Re: Japanese Tea Caddy Sakura Bark - Documentary

Postby Drax » Jul 16th, '12, 13:36

Another place to look would be here at Artistic Nippon. I picked up a caddy and some other bark-related items... all quite beautiful!
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Re: Japanese Tea Caddy Sakura Bark - Documentary

Postby Chip » Jul 16th, '12, 15:45

Thanks for these postings. I am quite interested in this topic.

I have been told from a Japanese and a Chinese source, if you see a sakura canister with a reasonable price, it is in all likelihood made in part or in full in China (just like chasen). I can usually pick the Chinese ones out somewhat intuitively. 8)

Here is one on a Chinese ebay seller's site. You will see this at Teavana and even Japanese vendors' sites. The seller when asked said it was 100% made in China, though I neglected to ask the source of the actual sakura bark used.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Japanese-Lacquered-cherry-bark-tea-caddy-wooden-natsume-/160822521969?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2571c4f071

Caveat emptor!

(BTW, this site sells a lot of Chinese made items that could be mistaken for Japanese ... and if you want to buy any of their bamboo items, ask for photos of actual pieces in order to avoid major disappointment)
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Re: Japanese Tea Caddy Sakura Bark - Documentary

Postby achyle » Jul 16th, '12, 17:04

Hey Chip,

It’s funny that you reference those tea caddies, my wife bought me 2 of these from Teavana.

Those cans have nothing to do with the real stuff,for my point of view it’s only for display purposes, it’s full of varnish, the smell is so strong,I wouldn’t put any tea in there unless you put your tea in a sealed bag.
The real stuff is only made of natural products even the glue is natural.

The purpose of the Sakura Bark is to let the tea breathe a little bit and at the same time, removes all possible micro moist or humidity from the tea caddy.

I’m sure if someone would translate the documentary for us we would learn a lot more.

I'll post some pictures later tonight to compare sakura bark and varnish caddy.

Cheers
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Re: Japanese Tea Caddy Sakura Bark - Documentary

Postby Chip » Jul 16th, '12, 17:23

Yes, I agree, the (Chinese) Teavana version is definitely best for display only and has little in comparison the the real deal. Just looking at the Teavana one, I can smell it through cyberspace!!!

I suspect the majority of sakura canisters out there are NOT 100% made in Japan such as in the video.

I purchased a similar one to yours through ebay not too long ago, it is really amazing in comparison to others I have seen in detail and craftmanship. I am 100% certain it is 100% Japanese.
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Re: Japanese Tea Caddy Sakura Bark - Documentary

Postby debunix » Jul 16th, '12, 21:41

Watching this video is awakening a new teaware lust in my heart.....more opportunity for teaware acquisition disorder. Wouldn't the nice vacuum-packed oolongs like to be coddled in one of these rather than squished back into their now-too-tight pouches, after opening?

Hmmm....
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Re: Japanese Tea Caddy Sakura Bark - Documentary

Postby achyle » Jul 16th, '12, 21:53

quick pics with all the family

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Re: Japanese Tea Caddy Sakura Bark - Documentary

Postby achyle » Jul 16th, '12, 22:07

Debunix, more pics for your TAD :twisted:

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Re: Japanese Tea Caddy Sakura Bark - Documentary

Postby Chip » Jul 16th, '12, 22:11

... now those are the real deal! :!:
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Re: Japanese Tea Caddy Sakura Bark - Documentary

Postby Drax » Jul 17th, '12, 06:37

Absolutely gorgeous, achyle, thanks for sharing...!

Out of curiosity, what do the seams look like on your canisters? Although I thought the entire documentary was interesting, I was very interested in the section where he joins the two ends together to complete the cylinder -- in particular, he made (what looked to me) a pretty rough cut.

I looked at the one that I purchased from AN, and the seam on it is quite fancy -- it rather looks like a closed zipper (or the interlocking teeth at the interface of two gears... except linear instead of curved).
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Re: Japanese Tea Caddy Sakura Bark - Documentary

Postby Chip » Aug 2nd, '12, 12:56

Drax wrote:Absolutely gorgeous, achyle, thanks for sharing...!

Out of curiosity, what do the seams look like on your canisters? Although I thought the entire documentary was interesting, I was very interested in the section where he joins the two ends together to complete the cylinder -- in particular, he made (what looked to me) a pretty rough cut.

I looked at the one that I purchased from AN, and the seam on it is quite fancy -- it rather looks like a closed zipper (or the interlocking teeth at the interface of two gears... except linear instead of curved).

It seems that there are differing methods employed by different artisans. The artisan in the video employs the "blind seam" (at least on the exterior) compared to the zipper seams. And most of the mass produced ones simply overlap and glue I guess.

The one I purchased has the blind seam which is not detectable to the naked eye ... I have to take a closer look with a magnifyer. Really amazing.

In the video I love how the weight of the lid causes it to smoothly slide closed on its own. I had to try this on the authentic one I purchased on ebay. It is amazing, the lid slides down with the gentle precision of a Swiss watch, but only when matching the sakura bark grains.

Truly the epitomy of canisters.
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