Hi Everyone, Blitzy here! The Tokyo room in Bingo Blitz really inspired me, and so I have been learning all about traditional Japanese crafts. My favorite new word is wabi-sabi, which is all about embracing imperfections and seeing the beauty in them. It means that even a beginner like me can create something special.
If you are a fan of crafts, there is plenty to choose from in Japan. Here are some of the ones I enjoyed most of all:
The oldest craft is Japanese pottery, which dates back thousands of years. There are two main types of pottery:
Earthenware is less refined and uses simpler, muted colours. The utensils used for a Japanese Tea Ceremony are usually made in this way. It is based on the philosophy of Zen Buddhism.
There are many different styles of earthenware, including Rengetsu, which often includes carved inscriptions and poetry, and Raku, which is shaped by hand rather than on a potter’s wheel.
Porcelain is usually highly decorative and colorful, and the design is carefully chosen. This type of pottery is based on traditions from China and Korea, but the Japanese have developed their own style over the centuries. Some porcelain pieces are made with bright colours and many different types of glaze, so they look very polished and shiny.
Next on my list is doll-crafting. I know this sounds like something for children, and sometimes it is, but there is a whole industry of doll crafters and collectors. Some are so beautiful and valuable, and there are special shelves in many homes to display them!
Kokeshi dolls are traditional wooden Japanese dolls. You can buy them as a souvenir, or even better, join a workshop and make your own! The simple shapes can be painted either in one of the traditionally recognized styles or have fun and create your own style. You can even learn how to make them from scratch, using a lathe to shape the doll before painting and glazing your work.
Hina dolls are part of the Hina-Matsuri festival, the Girls’ Day celebration. Hina dolls are usually very elaborate and valuable, and are sometimes even handed down as heirlooms. These are not designed for playing with, but are displayed during the month of March before being carefully stored away for the following year. There are 15 dolls in a complete set, plus many elaborate accessories, and they are set out in a very particular order on a seven-tier display.
If you are an advanced crafter, you could take a class and make your own. I recommend enjoying the beautiful displays in museums.
My favorite type of Japanese doll is Maneki Neko, the lucky cat dolls! Well which cat could be luckier than Blitzy?! They usually have a paw raised, or even waving, as if to welcome in good luck. They were originally meant to be lucky charms for silk manufacturers, but they are so cute and charming that they became a universal symbol of good luck for businesses and households in Japan.
Paper crafts are so popular in Japan that there are even governmental policies about the quality of different types of paper, such as Washi paper, made from locally-sourced fibers, and Yoshi paper which is a mass-produced version popular throughout the world.
The most popular paper crafts are Origami and Kirigami.
Kirigami is the art of paper cutting Origami is the art of paper folding
Origami purists insist that the only thing you need when making a project is paper. No tools, no added extras, just paper. Almost any paper will do, as long as it holds a fold. You can try your hand at origami with these great Blitzy projects I’ve prepared for you! Download the template, print the special origami paper and follow the instructions to create your very own Blitzy merch!
Once you’ve enjoyed the traditional Japanese craft, why don’t you head over to Bingo Blitz and find out if this cat brings you some luck, and of-course everyone is a bingo winner with this great gift - Collect it now!
(For those of you who were wondering about the pinterest riddle, Nerikomi is a very special style of pottery which involves creating a marbled pattern by piling up layers of clay and then rolling and cutting it. That sounds like a lot of work to me! Sashimono is the woodwork equivalent of origami, as it uses no nails. Nunobari is one of the painting techniques used for making decorative dolls. Now you know!)