Haku

One by one craftsmen carefully place gold or silver-leaves onto strong papers made of Japanese Kozo paper mulberry gluing them with thin layers of lacquer to form Haku. When used for textile, this metallic paper is then finely cut to thin pieces which processed becomes yarn. Nishijin area is the only place in the world where they weave paper into textile, and it can happen because of the high standard of washi  (Japanese paper), lacquer and gold and silver-leaves. Haku before being cut, in paper form, could be used as home decoration or as art. When made into yarn, haku can also be used as part of lighting, as of Izayoi which is the first attempt to use it in furniture- and so this aesthetic material is has plenty of potential yet to explore.

The heart of Nishijin area, Kyoto, is where Haku is created.

Intertwined with gold and, or silver, haku has been the key element of gorgeous Japanese traditional textiles. Using lacquer, craftsmen glue gold and silver powder onto washi made from fibrous bark of Japanese kozo-which is the same material used for Japanese paper currency. The material then gets cut into filamented pieces which then gets woven into Nishijin textiles.

Until the Edo period there were only gold and silver colour choices but through chemical developments and intense competition craftsmen found and enhanced new techniques adding variety of colours and patterns to enjoy haku material. Now, there are many different ways to change silver into shades of complicated metallic tones. For instance, Yaki-haku (literally translated as burnt haku) irons the haku, and by adding heat with sulphur it creates a rusty tone and mature atmosphere to the material. Adding sulphur could also give out other tones such as limpet shell colours (slightly darker than turqoise) or ark shell colours, and so on. From tough competition, craftsmen adapted to find their specialities and unique colours developing techniques handling the haku.

Recently, due to the decrease in the demand for traditional textile industry the production of haku is also declining. However, haku as material and its technique can be arranged not only for the traditional Japanese textiles such as kimonos and obi (belt) but for other types of clothing and home fashion. There is a lot of potential in this material depending on the idea.

Silver (plain)

Only silver leafs are stuck to the washi. Handmade in Kyoto, this is one the most basic forms of haku.

Code KT-OKD-0001
Size 380*540mm — Other sizes are arrangeable, please contact for further information
Content Washi, Lacquer, Silver haku

Yaki-haku (burnt haku) A

This dark looking silver haku is created by sulphurisation of silver. Craftsmen in Kyoto place the silver leafs one by one onto washi and iron it with paper or fabric which includes sulphur. Depending on the amount of sulphur and heat, one could find golden, red, blue or black colour on the haku.

Code KT-OKD-0002
Size 380*540mm — Other sizes are arrangeable, please contact for further information
Content Washi, Lacquer, Silver haku

Sunago-haku (powdered gold/silver on haku material) A

This material is handmade from decorating silver haku with coloured coating, lacquer and sprinkling gold and silver in powder form onto the surface with special glue coated. The pattern comes from the powder arranged using brushes.

Code KT-OKD-0003
Size 380*540mm — Other sizes are arrangeable, please contact for further information
Content Washi, Lacquer, Silver haku

Sunago-haku B

This material is handmade from decorating silver haku with coloured coating, lacquer and sprinkling gold and silver in powder form onto the surface with special glue coated. The pattern comes from the powder arranged using brushes.

Code KT-OKD-0004
Size 380*540mm — Other sizes are arrangeable, please contact for further information
Content Washi, Lacquer, Silver haku

Sunago-haku C

This material is handmade from decorating silver haku with coloured coating, lacquer and sprinkling gold and silver in powder form onto the surface with special glue coated. The pattern comes from the powder arranged using brushes.

Code KT-OKD-0005
Size 380*540mm — Other sizes are arrangeable, please contact for further information
Content Washi, lacquer, silver haku

Irregular yaki-haku A

Unique even within Kyoto, this yaki-haku is created by adding heat and special chemicals to silver haku paper. Gold, silver and purple colours are layered complicatedly bringing aesthetically pleasing irregular patterns to the surface.

Code KT-OKD-0006
Size 380*540mm — Other sizes are arrangeable, please contact for further information
Content Washi, lacquer, silver haku 

Matured Yaki-haku A

As the name suggests, this yaki-haku is made from silver-leaves are carefully glued to washi as haku and left for several decades before heated. The colour from chemical reactions over time creates an aged and calming feeling to the material.

Code KT-OKD-0007
Size 380*540mm — Other sizes are arrangeable, please contact for further information
Content Washi, lacquer, silver haku