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YumeTwins Kawaii Culture BlogJapanese Crafts & DIY, Why Is It Popular?

Japanese Crafts & DIY, Why Is It Popular?

By Bianca Bache
December 29, 2022

Japanese crafts are known for their adorable and cute aesthetic, which has helped to contribute to their popularity both in Japan and around the world. From adorable embroidered animals, and cute ceramic figurines, to DIY kit sets and so much more. There are countless ways to incorporate a touch of whimsy and charm into your crafting projects!

From traditional Japanese crafts to the modern day

One of the main reasons for the cute aesthetic of Japanese crafts is the country’s long-standing love affair with all things charming and adorable. Here at YumeTwins, we love all things kawaii, which simply means all things cute in Japanese!

The beginning of kawaii has a long history which all started from hand-crafted DIY projects. The cultural phenomenon of kawaii in Japan has influenced everything from fashion to art to design. It’s no surprise, then, that Japanese crafts, with their attention to detail and focus on high quality, often embody this cute and charming aesthetic.

Kokosehi dolls
Crafting kokeshi dolls is a cute and fun Japanese crafting activity. Image via Shutterstock

Traditional Japanese craft medium

The popularity of the handmade art form lends itself to self-expression from traditional craft. During the Edo period and Meiji period in Japan, there was a multitude of different mediums that were handcrafted. Although some of it was for self-expression a large portion was for practical use.

As the years have changed the traditional Japanese crafts have moved into the more kawaii style that is so loved in Japan. But it is easy to forget that it all begins with daily life crafts like dyed textiles for kimonos and furoshiki, tea ceremony ceramics, and kokeshi dolls.

Looking to bring more kawaii into your life? Check out YumeTwins! YumeTwins sends the cutest Japanese plushies, stationery, and other character goods straight from Tokyo to your door!

Furoshiki Japanese crafts
Furoshiki can be used as a present wrap or lunch wrap! Image via Shutterstock

Beyond the cute aesthetic, Japanese crafts are also known for their focus on quality and attention to detail. Whether it’s pottery, woodworking, or textiles, Japanese craftsmen and women take great pride in their work.

They strive to create pieces that are not only aesthetically pleasing but also functional and durable. This focus on quality is reflected in the fact that many Japanese crafts are considered works of art and are highly prized both in Japan and around the world.

Japanese crafts…and Zen Buddhism?

Another reason for the popularity of Japanese crafts is their strong connection to Zen Buddhism, which emphasizes the importance of mindfulness and being fully present in the moment.

Many Japanese crafts, such as pottery and calligraphy, require a high level of concentration and focus, which can be seen as a form of meditation or “moving Zen.”

This connection to Zen Buddhism may be one of the reasons why Japanese crafts have a calming and meditative effect on those who engage in them, making them a perfect activity for those looking to de-stress and relax.

Why is it popular in Japan?

Handmade crafts are fun and engaging activities that create a sense of peace. Japanese crafts for many years have allowed people to express their creativity and personality. Whether you’re making a plushie, a piece of jewelry, a ceramic figurine, or even a cherry blossom-inspired painting.

There are endless ways to put your own spin on a project and make it uniquely yours. With the rise of social media and online communities, it’s easier than ever to share your creations and connect with others who share your love of cute crafts.

Woman on the floor painting
Crafts are the perfect way to relax, so why not paint something kawaii! Image via Shutterstock

When you’re next feeling a bit more crafty we suggest taking a look into traditional Japanese culture and finding some art that resonates with you. Create your own spin on it for truly unique and kawaii art! 

Types of Japanese crafts you should try

Kokeshi dolls: Kokeshi dolls are traditional wooden dolls that originated in Japan’s Tohoku region. They are made by shaping wood into a simple body, with a painted head and arms. Kokeshi dolls are especially decorated with intricate patterns and designs and are popular souvenirs and gifts.

Amigurumi: Amigurumi is the art of crocheting small, stuffed dolls and animals. It originated in Japan and has gained popularity all over the world. Amigurumi dolls are typically made using colorful yarn and a crochet hook and can range in size and complexity.

origami paper japanese crafts
Origami is the art of folding paper to create kawaii shapes. Image via Shutterstock

Sashiko: Sashiko is a type of Japanese embroidery that involves creating intricate patterns using a simple running stitch. It is often used to decorate clothing and other household items.

Origami: Origami is the art of paper folding! Origami is a popular Japanese craft that dates back to the Edo period (1603-1868). With just a single piece of paper, you can create a wide range of shapes and figures. From simple animals to complex geometric shapes.

What would your next art project be? Would you want to try and incorporate Japanese crafts? Let us know in the comments below! 

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Bianca Bache

Tokyo based writer that's enthusiastic about all things kawaii and cute!

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