MAKERS STORY of Takayanagi Kiichi Shoten

 

Takayanagi-Kichi-Shoten has Established in 1954. It is know as one of the fewest and most famous sewing and indigo dyeing makers which has  its own factory in Japan. Because the former president had eight dan of Judo, the company has strength judo as well. We asked about the original products, a new management team. (May, 2017)

Profile

President Mr. Takayanagi

Sales representative Eiko Yamashita

Sales representative Makoto Tajikara

 

Story

 

-Could please tell us your company?

Miss. Yamashita: Our strength is a dyeing technique and sewing skill. We have our own garment factory in Japan. Originally, we were doing indigo dyeing so there is an indigo factory just back of the headquarters. However, It doesn’t  work every day.

 

-It’s our first time visiting indigo dyeing maker.

Mr. Tajikara: At the time of establishment, we sell indigo dyeing cloths.

 

—I think your indigo dyeing is a little light in color.

Miss. YamashitaIt called “Enshu Aizome”.

 

-…Enshu?

Mr. Tajikara: The name of region is “Enshu”.

 

-Oh, I took “Enshu Railway” today.

Miss. Yamashita: Yes, same name as that railway, haha. Enshu aizome is one of popular dyeing technic. Another part of Shizuoka prefecture is “Suruga Aizome”. The most popular aizome technic is Bushu in Saitama prefecture.

 

What is the characteristic of “Enshu aizome”?

Miss. Yamashita: The lightness in color. We think it is true “Ai” color but normally, deep in color seems to be popular.

 

-There are some ways in Aizome.

Miss. Yamashita:: I think we are the only one who has indigo dyeing factory.

 

-Can we look around the aizome factory?

Miss. Yamashita: Sure. It is dirty but real aizome factory.

 

-You are Judo-gi makers as well, right?

Miss. Yamashita: Previous president Kiichi Takayanagi was gone in January 2017. My grandfather also played Judo so we focused not only Kendo equipment but also Judo.

Miss. Yamashita:We made Japanese kendo-gi and hakama in our factory.

 

Original dyeing

Miss. Yamashita: I do not want too many orders, haha. It has good originality. It is all build-to-order manufacturing.

※Kusakizome

 

- It’s really unique.

Miss. Yamashita: Auctually, other Kendo makers want it. We had made Kusakizome bogu set as trial before.

*Sample

 

-Why did you make it?

Miss. Yamashita: For the people who have allergies. It’s made by NATURAL COLORED MATERIAL.

 

-I had heard that Kakishibuzome is prevent the smell.

Miss. Yamashita: Aizome has the same effect. For people sweat easily. We made it to lessen the allergic material.

 

Mr. Tajikara: Most of people buy this kind of unique kendo-gi for gift.

Miss. Yamashita: Sakura kendo-gi and Sax blue kendo-gi are also popular. Because they are original.

 

Miss. Yamashita: Sakura Kendo-gi is especially popular by Kids.

-It’s really rare color.

 

Miss. Yamashita:Since colors change as time goes on, we do not keep stock as much as possible. It is not made build-to-order manufacturing, but we try to keep this item’s originality.

 

 

Selling for overseas

President Takayanagi: We took International Organization for Standardization.

 

Miss. Yamashita: Although we are a small company but the previous president want to expand business overseas so we thought it had better to take it We need to grantee safety for European people.

President Takayanagi: In short, we produce items same quality anytime.

 

Thank for today. It’s really good experience looking around the aizome factory.

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