Sunday, December 25, 2016

Another version of my white chabako set.  

It's warm this winter in Austin, so the white theme helped suggest a winter holiday feeling. I lined the bottom of the chabako with white "snow" dotted blue cotton fabric, and made a silk kobukusa in a similar color. The binkake (brazier) is one I just made, with a gingko leaf pattern.

For the Unohana Chabako procedure, I chose a gold tray and Angela Rogers beautiful pale blue chawan to contrast all the white. Happy Holidays! 

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Shiro, white, chabako

Finally I have all the parts for a new chabako set. I made a white ceramic chasen tsutsu, chakin tsutsu, furidashi and chashaku. In this picture is a Japanese chawan, that can be used until I have time to make a chawan that looks like a nest for the vintage Avon "bird" tea caddy. 

I like the simplicity of all white, but it would be fun to make colored or patterned liners for the box that could be changed for the seasons. I also plan to make a quilted cloth bag for carrying it safely outdoors. 

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Tea for a Hot Summer Day

Clear chabako set in the morning light, creates a cool feeling on a hot summer day.


I found a smaller clear glass teabowl to nest inside the larger one, for the Wakei Chabako Temae. The "usuitia" is a small silver lacquered tray, that is brought in on top the chabako.

 And I painted the back of the chashaku (bamboo tea scoop) with metalic lacquer. When the chashaku is turned over onto the teabowl, it reminds me of the silvery flash of minnows as they swim in a shallow stream of water.

Instead of a hanging scroll I used 
a fan for this informal tea, with silvery images from the Chōjū-giga 鳥獣戯画 Frolicking Animals, that are caricatures of Japanese priests as toads, rabbits and monkeys. It's from a a set of four emakimono (picture scrolls), at Kōzan-ji temple in Kyoto, mid 12-13th c.

Good Morning!

Sunday, March 27, 2016


It was time to make a Wakin shifuku and matching kobukusa for my Nataktsugi tea caddy so that I could practice the Wakindate chanoyu procedure for lessons.

First, I measured the tea caddy and made a paper pattern with seam allowances added. The outer layer is striped silk damask and the lining is green dupioni silk. It was the closest I could find to traditional kanto, striped, pattern that is used for some shifuku. (See my March 2013 entry about making a different shaped shifuku.)

I thought the cylindrical shape of shifuku would be easier to make than one for the curved silhouette of a ceramic cha-ire, but it took considerable experimentation to get the the bottom seam set underneath just the right amount. Also, because the silk is smooth and rather thin, every stitch shows and it was challenging to sew the round inset bottom evenly. 

I used my marudai frame to make a kumihimo braided cord for the drawstring. The 12 ply silk made a better diameter cord than my previous attempt. The paper strip in the picture above has points measured for sewing on the loops which hold the drawstring. 

Below is the finished Wakin shifuku and kobukusa set. Behind it is the mizusashi I made, with a lacquer lid from Japan. The traditional mizusashi for this temae is from Seto with a lacquer lid that rests on top the rim, but I think mine has a similar unassuming feeling.