- Kaishi-paper, a folded piece of paper tucked inside the front of a kimono.
- The tradition of Kaishi is still used in tea ceremonies and for Japanese food.
- Why not start your life with Kaishi?
Kaishi-paper, a folded piece of paper tucked inside the front of a kimono.
When eating traditional Japanese sweets, have you ever seen them served on a piece of paper? This paper is called Kaishi, and some younger Japanese might not know the word for it. Some of you might know the word, but aren’t familiar with what it is.
Kaishi means, “a paper folded and tucked inside the front of kimono.” The history is very old and it traces back to the Heian period（794～1185年). At the time, aristocrats would usually carry kaishi inside their front pockets. The paper was used as a handkerchief or tissue, used as a plate to eat sweets, or used as a memo pad to write Japanese poems (waka). Kaishi was very useful and was a necessary tool that could play so many roles.
The tradition of Kaishi is still used in tea ceremonies and for Japanese food.
Japanese people have used it for a long time, however it became less important as our clothes shifted from kimono to Western style clothes. People don’t usually carry it today, but it’s still very important in tea ceremony and traditional Japanese food. It is used as a handkerchief to wipe your mouth or used as a plate when eating something moist. Using kaishi looks so elegant and smart. Another important use for it is to wrap leftovers to take with you. It is good etiquette to show respect to those who have prepared food for you.
Why not start your life with Kaishi?
White kaishi used to be the popular color, but nowadays it’s available in many more colors, because some people have rediscovered kaishi’s attraction and use it in everyday life. You can find it at stationery shops, or even special Kaishi shops. If you happen to come across one, lets take a look at it’s many uses.
You can use it as a coaster, an envelope to give money, or a memo-pad to write a letter. It is not only useful, but it also gives you the ability to show hospitality to someone.
You’ll want one when you discover its attractions.
Tsujitoku kaishi shop in Kyoto handles a variety of kaishi from contemporary to traditional and classic. They hold workshops for kaishi’s uses (reservation is needed), so please check out this shop if you are interested.
271 Horikawa-cho, Shijo, Shijo-kudaru, Horikawa-dori, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto