We are now at the entrance to summer. While modern Japanese households have air conditioners or electric fans set to overcome the hot and humid season, Japanese still cherish “uchiwa (fan)” as tools to cool themselves.
Historically, uchiwa not only served to fan oneself but were initially used to hide one’s face and fan off insects as well. Since the Muromachi period, fans were painted with ukiyoe, haiku, and waka, visually pleasing the users.
Though its supply drastically decreased during the war period, the introduction to plastic uchiwas during the 1940s exposed the traditional daily necessity to citizens again. Though not as effective as the modern electric appliances, uchiwas are perceived as one of the Japanese summer traditions that is somewhat necessary to enjoyably spend the season.
Uchiwas are evolving even today, retaining its traditional form, but serving multiple functions. Kurikawa Shoten’s Shibu Uchiwa is coated with permission tannin, which not only makes the material strong and long-lasting but adding the effect of insect proofing.
The different sizes serve multiple purposes, visually pleasing the users with two available colors. The products would surely convey the historical and traditional summer tool long cherished by Japanese.
Kurikawa Shoten's Shibu Uchiwa