Nakagawa Masashichi Shoten: Fall in love with Japanese traditional arts and crafts

Nakagawa Masashichi Shoten: Fall in love with Japanese traditional arts and crafts

The Shibuya Scramble Square opens on November 1, 2019, and will be the tallest skyscraper punctuating the Shibuya skyline. Among the two hundred odd stores and restaurants, one of the most popular places for Japanese souvenirs is Nakagawa Masashichi located on the 11th floor.
A historic brand established way back in 1716 in Nara, the focus of this store is to bring joy in using everyday tools and therefore, revitalizing local traditional arts and crafts. Their tagline states "an entry into the world of Japanese crafts" and it truly is! So let's see what you can pick up here without burning your wallet The first two are only available at the store in Shibuya Scramble Square.

1. Hachiko Omikuji

Just for 400 yen, this one is a must-have for anyone who visits Shibuya and the iconic Hachiko statue! A papier mache Hachiko with a fortune that you can put out from the bottom.

2. Handkerchiefs and hand towel

Bringing together the symbol of Shibuya, Shibuya Scramble Crossing can be seen printed on these linen handkerchiefs and you can get images embroidered of your choice! Another Shibuya special is Nara's kaya-shiki fukin (a dish cloth or tea towel).

3. Tea Canisters

From Fukui prefecture, these tea canisters are wrapped in an embossed paper called Ukigami and made by Yamatsugi Seishisho. They come in three different colors: blue, yellow and bright orange.

4. Miniature Kumade

The Tori-no-Ichi is a festival to "rake in" good luck. During the festival, people buy kumade as an offering and here, you can buy a miniature version featuring daruma, maneki neko as well as a deer.

5. Senbei (rice crackers)

Looking for gifts for a foodie friend? How about these rice crackers that come in unbelievably adorable packaging showcasing Mt. Fuji and the good luck cat.

6. Steam Cream

While you will see many Steam Cream stores across Japan, it is only at Nakagawa Masashichi that you will find these tins featuring deer, a symbol of Nara.

7. Monopoly and other games

This was a surprise! A great way to learn about Japanese traditional crafts and arts, Monopoly would be an ideal gift for any Japanophile.
Another game that caught our eye was the Kamizumo Tonton. Basically "paper sumo", you try to topple paper sumo figures wrestling on a paper ring.

8. Christmas-inspired products

These ornaments are all made from wood or papier mache. If you're returning from Japan just before the holiday season, then these are excellent, environmentally friendly presents.


Other than the above, you can also purchase clothes made using natural fabrics, iron teapots, eco-friendly boxes, among other things. There are useful items from all over Japan so don't forget to stop by!
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