Straw Handicrafts Group

Theme : Traditional Art Area : Shonai, Tsuruoka

This group was established in 1983 with the objective of interacting with children through straw workmanship in order to hand down an endangered straw culture to the next generation, as a result of straw handicrafts being pushed into the shadows with recent agricultural developments. The group was established to give the elderly more purpose in society, and has since received high praise for its high quality of straw handicrafts and has been able to introduce this craftsmanship to a wide area spanning the prefecture and spreading as far as overseas.
At present member numbers total only 11, but the group repertoire is extremely varied, numbering 18 different products including mushiro rolled mats, zori sandals, bandori ‘backpacks’ and benkei (a cooking apparatus that hangs over a hearth). These all require a high degree of skill and artistic sense. Aside from learning about the art of straw workmanship through handicraft classes, the group is able to teach the importance of looking after things and valuing local traditional culture in elementary school workshops.

CopyrightYamagata Pref
ProductionYamagata Prefecture Lifelong Learning Culture Foundation