Category: Japanese Culture

Origami Bird Book by Akiko just published!

By , March 17, 2010 8:59 pm

I am happy to announce that Akiko has published her first origami book.

It’s called the TinyShiny Origami Bird Book and features Twenty (20) hand-drawn, full-colour origami bird projects, with simple instructions that anyone can follow.

The book shows how to create elegant paper birds in hundreds of colours and patterns, using widely available origami paper. It is available at TinyShiny.com and Amazon.

About the author
Akiko has been making origami since she was a girl living in Tokyo. She has published many origami projects and articles about Japanese arts and crafts on TinyShiny.com. She is an accomplished jewelry designer, illustrator and origami artist. Her original tiny Origami Earrings designs have inspired many imitations and been sold worldwide. She continues to share the simple pleasure of folding paper into beautiful objects.

Glass bead Straps

By , July 19, 2009 4:51 pm

I created a new product Czech-crystal bead charm with ringing bell.
Tiny Shiny strap

There is a ringing bell inside the ball. Ball size is 2 cm. Black nylon strap can be attached to cell phone, camera, bag, zipper, etc..

6 different colors are available now at TinyShiny.com.

When I was kid in Japan, I had a key holder with ringing bell for my bicycle key. That way I could here the bell ringing whenever I dropped the key.
Today, I like to attach little charms to my bag and jacket, so that I can hear the little jingling bell sound everywhere I go.

New Book Covers, Pincushions and Chopstick Bags.

By , June 26, 2009 1:47 pm
Book Cover at TinyShiny.com

Book Cover at TinyShiny.com

Here is a new design for Book Covers I just put up on TinyShiny.com.

Original hand stamped Denim Book Cover – Dog. Color: Blue stamped with white ink.
For Book Height: 18 cm (7 1/8 inches). Width is adjustable.

I used TinyShiny original stamp that I designed and carved myself.
Also I made different design and color Book Covers. Please check here!

 

 

Handmade Pincushions at TinyShiny.com

Handmade Pincushions at TinyShiny.com

Handmade Pincushions

I just created some new Pincushions

These are also designed and handmade by me. Size: about 4.5 cm (1 3/3 inches) square.
See Pincushions!

 

 

 

Handmade Chopstick Bags at TinyShiny.com

Handmade Chopstick Bag at TinyShiny.com

Handmade Chopstick Bags

I just created some new Chopstick Bags.

Put your Chopsticks or Utensils and take them with you.
These are also different designs.

 

 

 

Shop for TinyShinyOriginal Crafts at TinyShiny.com

Shop for TinyShiny Jewelry at TinyShiny.com

You can check out my Free Origami Projects with illustrated diagrams of classic origami shapes.

Jizo Lucky Charm

By , March 11, 2009 6:22 pm

TinyShiny Ojizo lucky charm

 

Here is a new design for Ojizo-sama Lucky Charm I just put up on TinyShiny.com.

Jizo 地蔵 (or as we Japanese call him Ojizo-sama) is the Bodhisattva (Bosatsu) and is often portrayed as a child-monk.

Jizo is also believed to give us health, longevity, wisdom, wealth, a good harvest, easy birth etc…

 

TinyShiny ojizo charm

ojizo charm

They are handmade sculptures made with polymer clay.
They can be attached to cell phone, camera, bag, zipper, etc..
Jizo Size: about 3.5 cm tall.

 

Read about Jizo Article at TinyShiny.com

Shop for Jizo Clay Sculptures at TinyShiny.com

Shop for Jizo Pincushions at TinyShiny.com

Read about Japanese Arts and Crafts at LittleAkiko.com

Furoshiki Bags

By , March 1, 2009 3:43 pm

TinyShiny Furoshiki

TinyShiny Furoshiki Suika Wrap

Furoshiki Suika Zutsumi (Watermelon wrap)

This method can be used to wrap round objects.
You have to tie the knot tight with Mamusubi technique.
Follow diagrams and instructions below.

 
 
 



TinyShiny Furoshiki Suika Wrap

Furoshiki Instant Shopping bag

This bag is quick and easy to make. Ues to carry all your stuff.
It can replace your regular plastic shopping bag.
It’s good for the environment!!

Follow diagrams and instructions below.

 
 
 

Go to Mamusubi Furoshiki Project

Go to Crafts Shop at TinyShiny.com

Read about Furoshiki at TinyShiny.com

Origami Peacock Earrings

By , February 26, 2009 1:39 pm

Origami Peacock Earrings at TinyShiny.com

 

 

Origami Peacock Earrings at TinyShiny.com

Origami Peacock Earrings at TinyShiny.com

Here is a new design for Origami Peacock Earrings I just put up on TinyShiny.com.

They are a little bit bigger than other my other Origami Earrings because of the large tail.

The front and back of the tail have different colors.

These Tiny Origami Peacocks are 25mm tall.

 

 

 

Origami Cube Earrings at TinyShiny.com

Origami Cube Earrings at TinyShiny.com

Origami Cube Earrings

I just created some new origami cube earrings.

I used to make multicolored Origami cubes (little boxes) as ornaments.

They are made of 6 different pieces of paper.

Because my cube earrings are so tiny, it takes little bit longer to make each one.
These Tiny Cubes are only 8mm square.

 

 

Shop for Origami Fish, Crane and Cube Earrings at TinyShiny.com

Read about The Thousand Origami Cranes (Senbazuru)

You can check out my Free Origami Projects with illustrated diagrams of classic origami shapes.

Ojizo-sama – Jizo Bosatsu 地蔵 – Japanese Protector Monk

By , February 18, 2009 11:52 pm

Jizo 地蔵 (or as we Japanese call him Ojizo-sama) is the Bodhisattva (Bosatsu).

Jizo Statue in Kamakura, Japan

Jizo Statue in Kamakura, Japan

A Bodhisattva is one who devotes his or her life to freeing others from suffering. Usually the Bodhisattva wears gorgeous jewels, but Jizo is simple and portrayed as a child-monk.

The “Ji” (地) in Jizo means Earth. Jizo is the Japanese name of this Bodhisattva, who was also known in ancient India as Kshitigarbha Bodhisattva, the Earthstore Bodhisattva, guardian of the great earth.

The idea came to China from India and was incorporated into Taoism. The Earthstore Bodhisattva became the saviour for those condemned to Hell (地獄).

Jizo’s mission is to protect us during the time from Gautama Śākyamuni Buddha’s death to the arrival of Maitreya Bodhisattva.

Jizo Sculpture by Little-Akiko

Jizo Sculpture by Little-Akiko

The Earth gives us everything we need from food to treasure. Jizo is also believed to give us health, longevity, wisdom, wealth, a good harvest, easy birth etc…

Shop for Jizo Clay Sculptures at TinyShiny.com

Shop for Jizo Pincushions at TinyShiny.com

Read about Japanese Arts and Crafts at LittleAkiko.com

Japanese Lunch Box (お弁当 O-bento) Furoshiki Wrap

By , February 13, 2009 6:02 pm
Furoshiki Bento Wrap

Japanese Lunch Box (お弁当O-bento) Wrap

I always use Furoshiki to wrap my lunch box.

In Japan, Many pepole bring O-bento (lunch box) to school and work.
Most of them use Furoshiki (ko furoshiki*) to wrap Lunch boxes.


*Small Furoshiki. Usualy Ko Fusroshiki is made of cotton.


This Wrapping method can also be used to wrap gifts.

Follow diagrams and instructions below.





 
 
 

 

Go to Mamusubi Furoshiki Project

Go to Crafts Shop at TinyShiny.com

Shop for Origami Earrings at TinyShiny.com

Read about Furoshiki at TinyShiny.com

Furoshiki – Traditional Japanese Wrapping Cloth

By , February 7, 2009 9:10 pm

Furoshiki cloth

Furoshiki wine red sakura cloth

Furoshiki  (風呂敷) is a square piece of traditional Japanese wrapping cloth that was used to transport clothes, gifts, or other goods. Ancient furoshiki was made of natural materials, but Modern furoshiki can be made of a variety of cloth, including silk, cotton, rayon, and nylon.

The “Furoshiki” name means “bath spread”.

The origins of furoshiki date back to the Nara period (710 – 794 AD). It was used to wrap clothes at the Shosoin (a structure at the Todai temple in Nara, Japan).

In the Heian period (794-1185 AD), furoshiki was known as hirazutsumi, or a “flat folded bundle”.

In the Muromachi period (1338-1573), Shogun Ashikaga built a great bathhouse. It was a kind of steam bath with straw mats, wood, or cloth on the floor. The invited feudal lords used silk cloth that had been printed with their family crests’ to hold their clothes. These were used in order to keep each lord’s clothes separate and as a mat, after they finished bathing.

In Edo period (1603-1868) as public bathhouses became popular, the Furoshiki was used for spreading on the floor while undressing and for wrapping bathing articles and clothes to carry.

Furoshiki wrapped wine bottle and package

Furoshiki wrapped wine bottle and package

During this period, furoshiki became wildly popular among all social classes.
When cities developed, merchants used the furoshiki more and more to transport goods. Their merit was that they could wrap and carry any type of shape of goods.

Today, the Furoshiki has been replaced by modern bags and has lost its popularity as an everyday item.

It seems to be making a comeback though, and is very often given as a gift.

The furoshiki is an essential tool in daily life, often used instead of a plastic bag, or for storing articles, or for other domestic uses. It is not only used for wrapping but also as a tablecloth, a wall decoration, a fashion accessory, a wine bottle holder or drapes, etc.

This wrapping cloth is both useful and beautiful.

Here are a few basic examples of Furoshiki techniques:

Mamusubi Furoshiki project at TinyShiny.com

Mamusubi Furoshiki project


Mamusubi

This is a basic method for tying Furoshiki cloths together.

Go to the Mamusubi illustrated project page

Learn how to Untie Mamusubi

Furoshiki Instant Bag

Furoshiki Instant Bag


Instant Bag

This is very easy to make and very practical for carrying any kind of object. It is also eco-friendly.
Follow the link below for diagrams and instructions.

Go to the Instant Bag Furoshiki Project page

Furoshiki Tissue Box Wrap

Furoshiki Tissue Box Wrap


Furoshiki Tissue Box

This is easy to make and makes your tissue boxes look more elegant.

Go to the Furoshiki Tissue Box Wrap Project page

 

 

Blue Sakura Furoshiki Cloth

Blue Sakura Furoshiki Cloth

Pink Sakura Furoshiki Cloth

Pink Sakura Furoshiki Cloth

Tanzaku Furoshiki Cloth

Tanzaku Furoshiki
Cloth

Chili pattern Furoshiki

Chili pattern Furoshiki Cloth


Explore Japanese Arts and Crafts at LittleAkiko.com

Shop for Furoshiki Cloth at TinyShiny.com

The History of Origami

By , January 31, 2009 3:12 pm

The first paper making technique came to Japan from China in 7th century.

The Japanese developed another processing method using different materials. They created “Washi” which is a high quality Japanese paper. This paper is resilient and soft, and does not tear when handled.

Around the 10th century, paper was used for wrapping items or letters. It became fashionable to decorate letters and gifts with artfully folded paper.

A well-regulated lifestyle came with the advent of the samurai society, which gave rise to the art of paper folding for practical and formal purposes. It was also used in religious ceremonies.

Today, a vestige of its former use can still be seen in the “noshi”, a decoration of folded red and white paper attached to a gift.

Origami Fish

Origami Fish Earrings at TinyShiny.com


Origami was made to assume concrete shapes like cranes or boats. This is regarded as origami for pure enjoyment and called “play origami”.

In the Edo period (1600-1868), mass-produced, low-priced paper first became available. It quickly grew in popularity among all the people, not just the elite class. People enjoyed “play origami ” as decorative elements or toys.

In 1797, the oldest Origami book in the world “Senbazuruorikata” was published by Tamehachi Yoshinoya, and introduced the way to fold 49 kinds of continued Origami without cutting a sheet of paper. In 1845, the book “Kayarasou” was published. This era produced many Origami creators.

During the Genroku era (1688-1704), it became fashionable to use origami cranes and several varieties of boats as designs on clothing. Boat and crane origami were also reproduced with great frequency in Ukiyoe prints. Origami rapidly came to have a wide following during this period.

During the Meiji period (1868-1912), origami was used as a teaching tool in the kindergarten and elementary school levels. Not only are there now many imaginative and novel origami creations, but its educational worth and immense potential have been reconsidered and recognized.

 

Shop for Origami Fish, Crane and Cube Earrings at TinyShiny.com

Go to Free Origami Projects at TinyShiny.com

Read about The Thousand Origami Cranes (Senbazuru)

The Original article on TinyShiny.com