Sunday, December 4, 2011

Meeting kindred sisters in Kanazawa - was it a dream?

Photo in the stairway to Mariya 

We climbed the small staircase to visit a one-room shop on the second level above the busy street in Kanazawa. I knew our guide was leading us to a specialty shop called Mariya, where we would find temari and supplies to make them. The displays on the way up were promising!

Temari display case

Gotenmari Competition Poster
Yubinuki (thimble ring) picture

Sometimes, I am really slow on the uptake. But in my defense, the goodies for sale in the shop were grabbing all my attention. When Ai introduced us to the shop keeper, Yukiko Ohnishi, I thought she looked familiar, but I didn't realize exactly who she is and where we were. Then I recognized her book as one of my favorites about yubinuki. I guess that author photo in the back of a book is a good thing!

Thimble Ring book by Yukiko Ohnishi

Ohnishi-san is a darling pixie of a woman, as cute as the thimble rings that she makes. So friendly and welcoming. Here are a few links to explore her tiny creations...
Her blog
Kaga Yubinuki - The Traditional Thimble
Exhibition Blog

After introductions were made, she excused herself to run up to the next floor and bring Takako Koide down to meet us. I think that's her mother but will need to check. Well, as soon as I saw her, I knew where we were and it was like waking from a dream. I remembered Koide-san's lovely face and smile from some web surfing I did last winter when I discovered an article and wrote a blog post about her as a kindred sister. And here I was meeting her face to face - a wonderful moment when recognition dawned!
Kaga Temari Experience (Monday, Feb 14)

Of course, we posed for a picture.

Koide-san led us to her temari classroom just behind the shop. Hers is set up much like Itoh-san's classroom in Uji with a large table in the center and cabinets of temari and supplies around the walls. More temari eye-candy from her classroom...

One of my favorite purchases at Mariya was a couple of bags of jingly bells to place in the cores of temari. So clear and loud. I took a lot of my favorite needles to Japan to give away and look what we all got in return - needles to make yubinuki and temari. The smaller one is really tiny for the silk thread used in making thimble rings. The large needle is steel, I guess. They told us to be careful because it would rust. I thought my needle was sharp until I felt the tip on this needle - it's super-sharp. Our two kindred sisters quickly put together little needle cases for us. Cut a piece of heavy paper about 1 1/2" wide by 8" long; cut a piece of felt to fit one side, about 1 1/4"wide by 3 1/2" long; fold the paper over the felt and staple the fold; insert needles. I love this presentation!

I've really enjoyed reliving this day with you. Be sure to explore the link to the shop website and the blog. There are so many wonderful pictures of yubinuki and temari as well.

Her blog
Kaga Yubinuki - The Traditional Thimble
Exhibition Blog