About Temari

Japanese Temari

手まり [temari], which means "hand ball" in Japanese, is an ancient folk art form. Centuries ago, people in Japan began playing with temari, which were made from easily obtainable materials such as rice husks and fabric scraps, and held together with threads.

By the end of the 19th century, temari had become less popular as toys, but they were still made for enjoyment. The wider availability of cotton, silk, and synthetic threads contributed to the development of elaborate geometric and floral patterns. Today, temari are considered works of art and highly valued gifts.

Kaga Yubinuki

加賀ゆびぬき [Kaga yubinuki] - Japanese thimble, is a traditional craft from Kaga, Ishikawa Prefecture in Japan. During the Edo period, kimono seamstresses began making these thimbles from leftover silk threads. During the New Year holidays, the seamstresses would make such thimbles for themselves to practice their sewing skills and try out new patterns.  

The base of the thimble is paper, layered several times, then padded with raw silk or layers of thin thread and embroidered in an interlocking geometric pattern using a stitching technique similar to Japanese temari. Recently, Kaga yubinuki have become popular as unique pieces of jewelry and accessories.

Traditional Patterns

麻の葉 [Asa-no-ha]
Hemp Leaf Pattern

A traditional geometric pattern inspired by the hemp leaf, Asanoha signifies growth, strength, and protection from evil, as hemp thrives even in harsh conditions. Used to decorate Buddhist statues, Asanoha became a popular design for kimonos and various objects during the Edo period.

菊 [Kiku]
Chrysanthemum Pattern

The chrysanthemum is a symbol of Japan's imperial family, and its stylized flower with 16 double petals appears on Japanese passports and coins. In traditional crafts, the chrysanthemum is associated with longevity, nobility, loyalty, and rejuvenation.

桜 [Sakura]
Cherry Blossoms Pattern

Sakura is the national flower of Japan. It represents the spirit of beauty, renewal and hope, as well as the cycle of life. References to sakura in poetry, music, and art can be found as early as the beginning of the Heian period. The pink clouds of cherry blossoms fade quickly, and this transience is part of their appeal.