Manifesto

We’re not serious folk at Takaokaya, but we’re serious about our products. We cut no corners — we’re simply dedicated to bringing our customers the best. In a fast-changing world, our Manifesto keeps us on track and serves as a reminder of what’s important.

Kyoto Takaokaya Kutsurogi Manifesto CEO Koichiro Takaoka Photo

Takaokaya 3rd Generation Proprietor, Koichiro Takaoka

 

1)  We bring the Japanese art of “Kutsurogi” to your home.

“Kutsurogi” may be translated as “to relax” or to “feel at home.” In Japan, though, kutsurogi is something more: it’s a way of life.

Japan has a long tradition of making, and co-existing with beautiful objects, from byobu folding screens to ogi fans. Being surrounded by such things, lovingly hand-crafted using excellent materials, adds a deeper, psychological dimension to the kutsurogi experience. We call this kokoro no kutsurogi,” or kutsurogi of the soul.

At Takaokaya, we believe in integrating beautiful objects into one’s everyday life. Our original products are designed to promote the art of kutsurogi in your home. Natural, slow, living — the kutsurogi way!

Read more about Mr. Takaoka’s ponderings on the way of kutsurogi at our blog!

2) We are committed to handmade and the future of Kyoto craftsmanship.

In the modern age, the value of handcrafted products tends to be overlooked in favor of low-priced, mass-produced items. Third generation boss, Mr. Takaoka, is determined to fight back against this trend. By hiring highly skilled, local craftsmen to create each product by hand just as his forefathers did, Mr. Takaoka is maintaining a legacy of tradition that is fast disappearing.

Every time you purchase one of our products, you are helping to ensure the future of Kyoto’s rich artisanal culture! Find out more about how our products are made here.

3)  We use only the finest materials.

Our range of cushions and furnishings are made using the finest materials, sourced from around the world — our sheep’s wool from a 100 year-old Welsh mill, our silk woven in Japan’s most revered textile district of Nishijin.

4)  We keep your comfort in mind.

Modern lifestyles can be trying on our bodies. After a long day at the office, or running around with the kids, we know just what you need. Our traditional Japanese products have been adapted for extra stability and support.

5) We’re oshare! We create beautiful, chic and stylish products.

With all the choice around in the marketplace these days, we know how important it is to cater to your tastes and lifestyles. We have collaborated with up-and-coming designers from around the world to create a range of luxurious cushions and bedding that thoughtfully combine both Japanese and Western aesthetics and can enhance any living space.

6)   We promote Omotenashi, the Kyoto spirit of hospitality.

As the capital of Japan for over 1000 years, Kyoto has developed a complex culture. While the country has modernized rapidly over the past century, Kyoto remains its traditional heart. Indeed, there are many old customs we still hold dear today. The concept of omotenashi is one. We treat our guests like kings and queens (or should I say, emperors and empresses!) We want your guests to feel special when they use our products. Look closely and you’ll see we have added traditional touches — See the Y-shape stitching in the middle of our zabuton cushions? This indicates that the zabuton should face in the direction of the tail of the Y, as a courtesy to your guest. The corner tassels? This means you whoever should use these zabuton will be protected from evil!

7)  We value our customers.

Your satisfaction is what we care about. We love to hear from you about how you find our products and what you would like to see being made in our Kyoto workshop.

Remember, we also have a custom order-made service — bring us your favorite material and we’ll see if we can turn it into something even more special. Our customers have brought us kimono and obi they don’t wear anymore from which we have made zabuton and cushions that they use everyday! Find out more here.