By JAPAN Forward

The name of the doll decorations comes from the ancient Japanese “Tale of the Bamboo Cutter.” The tale is so popular it has even been made into a Studio Ghibli anime film.

As we approach March 3 in Japan, the decorations for Hinamatsuri start appearing. Families celebrate this festival to wish for the good health of girls by displaying decorative dolls for the month leading up to the special day.

Usually these decorations are made out of lavishly dressed dolls in the shape of an emperor, empress, and various attendees of a Heian-era style banquet. Displayed on a luscious red carpet, these dolls can be very bulky and expensive. But these days compact elegance seems to be the trend.

In a small shop in Kamigori, Hyogo Prefecture, a craft shop called Matsui Kogeisha is putting its own twist to Hina Ningyo, literally meaning princess dolls.

© JAPAN Forward

This shop makes Hinamatsuri decorations based on the story of Princess Kaguya. She is the protagonist in a famous Japanese tale said to date back to the tenth century, called “Taketori Monogatari”.


By - grape Japan editorial staff.