Shino-bamboo Crafts

The warm hand crafted braided bamboo items made of Shino-bamboo raised in the historical town of Iwadeyama

Shino-bamboo craft was first developed in the Iwadeyama area, where Daimyo Masamune Date had his first castle before he became the first lord of the Sendai clan. It is said that low ranked warriors started crafting Shino-bamboo items as their side job in the Edo period (about year 1720). Later, the local farmers started Shino-bamboo craft as their side job in the agricultural off-season, more than 300 years ago. Now Shino-bamboo craft is one of the biggest craftworks in Iwadeyama.

The use of Shino-bamboo is various, but local people have mainly used it as a kitchen tool when they wash rice, and they also put dishes and food in it. The crafters collect bamboo growing in the wild. The bamboo crafts are finely knitted by splitting the bamboo in four lengthwise strips called “Hege” or “Higo,” which are strong and beautiful. A three knitting technique has been used, including “Zaru knitting” which is a knit alternating parallel and vertical.

This technique has initially been domestic, but in 1948, they established the Bamboo Craft Art Center for training successors. Now tourists from all over the world can see how they make Shino-bamboo craft, and are not only able buy them, but can also try to make some themselves.