Title: Japanese lacquer box-Makie Suzuri Bako Gosekku
The Suzuri Bako (硯箱) is a type of box in which writing instruments such as writing brushes, ink sticks, or inkstone are stored. Also, some people use it to put a small knife or calendar. The Suzuri Bako is often made from lacquered wood. The *Makie (蒔絵) and the *Raden (螺鈿) are popular ornamental techniques for this kind of item. Artisans developed various skills to decorate boxes.
The Suzuri (硯, inkstone) is stored in this Suzuri Bako. If you have the Sumi (墨, inkstick), you could use this Suzuri for Japanese calligraphy. You can also display it to enjoy as a part of the interior decoration in your room. This box is decorated with the traditional Japanese technique; it would make an elegant and luxurious atmosphere. Or, it would be a special gift for someone who enjoys calligraphy.
The theme of this Suzuribako’s design is related to Gosekku (五節句, five festivals). First, on the surface of the lid of the box, motifs related to the Tango-no Sekku (端午の節句, the Boy’s Festival, May 5th) are depicted. Typical items are Kabuto (兜, Samurai helmet) and Japanese swords. Armor and helmets are “talismans” that protect children from disasters such as illness and accidents and guide them to overcome all difficulties and obstacles. By displaying it on Boys’ Day, it becomes a wish for “I want you to grow up strong and healthy.”
In addition, we could find the elements of other seasonal festivals here. For example, you would see a rectangular bundle of paper with a string attached. It is one of the representative motifs of the Tanabata (七夕, the Star Festival, July 7th). People write their wishes on a strip of paper and hang it from a bamboo branch. Furthermore, chrysanthemum flowers are also the item of Chouyou-no Sekku (重陽の節句, September 9th). People decorate chrysanthemum flowers and enjoy Sake with chrysanthemum petals floating to pray for longevity and good health. That is probably why the Sake cup is placed next to the flowers on this screen.
Now, please focus on the inside of the lid. You would find a pair of adorable Hina Ningyou (雛人形, Hina dolls). Hina dolls are the symbolic items for Joushi-no Sekku/Momo-no Sekku (上巳の節句/桃の節句, the Girl’s Festival, March 3rd). Hina dolls are decorated with the prayers of parents to protect their children from injury and illness and to build a happy family in the future. On the other side of the dolls, several vegetables are depicted. These vegetables are the ingredients of Nanakusa-Gayu (七草粥, porridge made with seven kinds of fixed vegetables), which is eaten on the day of Jinjitsu-no Sekku (人日の節句, January 7th), one of the five seasonal festivals. People eat Nanakusa-Gayu on the morning of the 7th of the New Year to pray for good health for the year ahead.
In this way, this Suzuribako is decorated with objects related to representative celebratory customs according to the Japanese calendar. You could enjoy Japanese culture along with Japanese traditional techniques. In addition to its practicality as an inkstone box, we hope you will enjoy viewing and feeling the history of Japan from each design on this box.
*Makie……A typical Japanese lacquer art technique developed uniquely in Japan for about 1200 years. Firstly, it needs to draw a picture with lacquer on the surface with a thin brush. Next, sprinkle the gold powder from above to show the pattern before the lacquer hardens. This technique makes a gorgeous and elegant look to works.
*Raden…… It is a kind of decorative technique that is often used for traditional craftworks. It uses the pearl part of seashells and puts it into the engraved surface of lacquer or wood. Thanks to its iridescent luster, it gives a luxurious look to works.
*As this item is an antique, please check each photo and ensure its condition.
Samurai Museum is located in Tokyo, Japan, exhibiting antique artifacts related to the Samurai history. Samurai Museum Shop is the place for those who are interested in Japanese culture and craftsmanship. We deal with antique Samurai swords/armor, traditional crafts made in Japan and so on.
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We normally ship via EMS (Express Mail Service) provided by Japan Post. It usually takes at least 5-14 days to deliver the package after you place an order. We offer Free International Shipping as long as we can ship your order by EMS. If you prefer other shipping carriers, please contact us.
We will inform you of the order’s tracking number via email. Please make sure you fill out your valid email address correctly.
*Please keep in mind that due to the spread of COVID-19, there might be possible delays in delivery. If you like to make sure if EMS shipping is available to your country, please contact us.
【Antique Japanese item and Export process】
After receiving the full payment from you, we will apply for its export permit from the Board of Education to legally export the item to other countries. It normally takes around 2 to 4 weeks to receive this permit. And we would like you to expect at least 1.0 – 1.5 months for your order to arrive at your given address after you ordered.
【How to make sure the condition】
Please keep in mind that what you are going to purchase is an antique item. We uploaded high resolution photos for you to check its condition thoroughly. If you like to see more photos with different angles, please feel free to contact us. We will be happy to send them to you so that you can make informed decision.
It is essential for us to know that you are happy with your choice of Suzuribako and we are prepared to use the best of our ability to serve you.
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