Skip to product information
1 of 3

Kurikawa Shoten

Japanese Shibu Uchiwa Fan "YAKITORI" | Kumamoto, Japan

Japanese Shibu Uchiwa Fan "YAKITORI" | Kumamoto, Japan

Regular price $32.00 USD
Regular price Sale price $32.00 USD
Sale Sold out
Shipping calculated at checkout.

This expansive and elegant shaped Uchiwa is one of the traditional Japanese fan shapes known called "Sensen" (仙扇). Originally designed for writing calligraphy, this fan was cherished as an exquisite accessory in tea rooms and other refined settings.

Its generous size also made it practical for everyday use, such as stoking fires in kitchens or bath Kamado (Stove) until the mid Showa era (1950-60) in Japan.

Today, it remains a staple in Japanese Yakitori restaurants kitchen.

The shape and size are just right for adjusting delicate flames from charcoal, and the coated persimmon tannin makes it sturdy and resistant to tearing and stains from smoke and sauce, even in the kitchen work area. This traditional Sensen fan is trusted by yakitori chefs.

- Yakitori Chef, Kono in N.Y. using the traditional Sensen Uchiwa - (Image:New York Times)


A variety of designs are available for the Shibu Uchiwa.

About Kurikawa Shoten

Founded in 1889, Kurikawa Shoten is a renowned establishment located in Kutami, Kumamoto, Japan, dedicated to the creation of traditional Japanese Uchiwa fans. Kutami, alongside Kyoto and Marugame, has historically been one of Japan's three major Uchiwa production centers. Today, Kurikawa Shoten remains the sole company preserving this centuries-old craft, which has been a hallmark of Kutami since the 1600s.


What is Shibu Uchiwa?

The Shibu Uchiwa is a traditional Japanese fan distinguished by its coating of persimmon tannin (Kaki Shibu). This unique process involves fermenting the tannin in jars, which fortifies the Japanese paper, making it strong, durable, and insect-resistant. Historically, these fans were a common sight in kitchens, used to fan fires. Over time, they became popular as festive gifts during the Bon Festival and mid-year celebrations.

Shibu Uchiwa fans are celebrated for their distinct and deepening color, which evolves gracefully with age.

- Kutami Shibu Uchiwa

Exclusive to the Kutami region in Kumamoto, Kutami Shibu Uchiwa fans are believed to symbolize business prosperity, inspired by the region's name, which translates to "the people are coming." Traditionally given as good-luck charms, these fans are meticulously handmade by skilled craftsmen using natural materials like bamboo and Japanese paper. They come in various sizes, tailored for different purposes, embodying the rich heritage and craftsmanship of Kumamoto.

  • Size: 250 × 370mm
  • Materials: Japanese bamboo, handmade washi paper, homemade persimmon tannin (Kaki-Shibu)


View full details