The Mission of Kumihimo, Weaving Relationships between People
Takashi Fukuda of “Ryukobou”, who continues to make traditional kumihimo, is always thinking about the future of the craft. Also at Ryukobo, you can experience making kumihimo.
There are 41 traditional crafts in Tokyo, including kumihimo but there is no other prefecture that has so many traditional crafts. And children in Tokyo haven't got the opportunity to experience traditional crafts. Noticing this, I want to make people aware of traditional crafts in our city of Tokyo, and I think that experiencing and being exposed to them at a young age can be an asset. I want people to feel the joy, difficulty, and beauty of making things through the experience.”
Ryukobou continued to work even during World War II without taking down its sign. “We were making strings for parachutes, for military industry. The strings were made to protect people's lives. The Kanji characters for "kumihimo" are both in the form of yarn(糸). You can come up with so many kanji characters with strings, such as "繋ぐ(connect)," "絆(bond)," "縁(fate)," and "結ぶ(tie)". I think that the string has a sense of mission that connects people to each other.”
Refining its unique technique of kumihimo and expanding its application to various places. “We are aiming for a work that is only one. Our goal is to help the world by doing something that can only be done with our skill. In recent years, my son, who is the next generation, has been working on the development of new materials and products with his eyes shining, which makes me very happy.” The passion is certainly being passed on to the next generation.