Tokyo Matsuya is a Japanese Edo Karakami washi paper producer established in 1690. Edo Karakami is the hand-crafted patterned washi paper for interior decorating such as Fusuma sliding doors and folding screens. It has been handmade by artisans in downtown Tokyo since the Edo Period.
Japanese motifs and craft of Edo Karakami paper ooze traditional charm but its modern allures match minimalist aesthetics of any current day designs. There’s something about the proper repetition and perfect placement of symbols (cloud, wave) and natural motifs (flowers of all sorts) that’s just the right.
This was my second time in the Tokyo Matsuya show/sales room, first time binge-buying paper not having thought through how to find a craftsman aid outside Japan who can help me turn paper into something useful. Applying washi paper on surfaces like plaster or wood veneer panels requires traditional technique using glutinous glue (made from rice) and I simply couldn’t find skilled help in Hong Kong. So the second time I came determined to delegate to Matsuya craftsman creating to finish them into hanging wall panels. I discovered that the elderly gentleman who adeptly gift wrapped my sheets with precision and ease in my previous visit happened to be that craftsman. He took dimensions, details of the rail hanging parts placement, and back panel paper suggestions. Like the last time I was there, I was the only customer during almost 90 minute visit and a handsome young female attendant followed me around to assist with mixing and matching paper texture and print colors.
I ordered two wall hanging panels 180 x 80 (cm), in two colors both in cloud motif with wires and hanging parts. They were delivered to my address in Tokyo in just over two weeks. Two panel screen will set you back from Y20,000 and up and a simple panel (regardless of size) will go about Y70,000 each (for medium range paper 20,000 per sheet).
On the 1st floor is a gift shop perfect for small souvenirs such as paper fans, stationary and gift boxes of all shapes and sizes and is worth a visit on its own.
Tokyo Matsuya Paper Showroom
6-1-3, Higashiueno, Taito-ku, Tokyo (Tokyo metro Inaricho Station)