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Gold Leaf Sakura and Bird Stationery Box with Red Felt Interior - Hakuichi

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Sale price$282.00 USD

This stationery box is a stunning example of traditional Japanese artistry, adorned with gold leaf over a checkered pattern symbolic of good fortune. On the lid, a tranquil scene unfolds with cherry blossoms and birds reveling in the spring air, beautifully rendered in Hakuichi's signature relief technique to create a slightly raised, three-dimensional effect.

Beyond its exquisite exterior, the box reveals a rich red felt interior upon opening. The box itself and the inside of the lid are lined with felt, providing a soft cushion that ensures your treasured items remain scratch-free.

I use this box to store an A5-sized notebook alongside my favorite fountain pen. The box’s substantial presence enhances the desk’s aesthetic, and even the simple act of opening the lid to retrieve my notebook and pen becomes a moment that uplifts my spirit.

This exquisite box was presented as a gift from Japan to the United States during the Japan-US summit held in February 2017 and is highly regarded as an excellent choice for a gift.

Details

  • Brand: Hakuichi
  • Quantity: 1 Box
  • Size: 8.5x11.5x2.6Inches / 21.7×29.4×6.6cm
  • Weight:  40oz /  1130g
  • Material: Gold Leaf on MDF
  • Note: Each piece is uniquely handmade, so expect some individual differences.

Discover Hakuichi's Artistry

Hakuichi Gold Lead | Komorebi Stationery | Japanese StationeryHakuichi, located in Kanazawa City in Ishikawa Prefecture — where 99% of Japan's gold leaf is produced — has been a pioneering force in gold leaf artistry since 1975. As a leader in this field, Hakuichi has been crucial in popularizing and preserving this traditional Japanese craft globally.

Kanazawa's fame in gold leaf production is deeply rooted in its artisans' exceptional craftsmanship, characterized by precision and perseverance. In the Edo period, when gold beating was restricted outside Edo (Tokyo) and Kyoto, Kanazawa's artisans refined their craft under challenging conditions. This period of adversity ultimately led to the region becoming renowned for its exquisite gold leaf.

With each piece of gold leaf stationery, Hakuichi brings a touch of Kanazawa's elegance to your desk. These products are not merely tools for writing but embody a rich legacy of Japanese artistry. High-quality gold in their stationery transforms every writing experience into a luxurious encounter, making these items highly valued among Japanese traditional crafts and a splendid addition for any stationery enthusiast.

Gold Leaf Sakura and Bird Stationery Box with Red Felt Interior - Hakuichi - Komorebi Stationery
Gold Leaf Sakura and Bird Stationery Box with Red Felt Interior - Hakuichi Sale price$282.00 USD

ARTISTIC PRODUCTION of GOLD LEAF

Gold leaf is an astonishingly thin material, just 0.1 to 0.2 micrometers thick. Imagine taking approximately 2 grams of gold and spreading it out to cover the size of a single-sized bed; that's how fine gold leaf can be. Achieving such a feat of thinness requires exceptional craftsmanship, the meticulous process of paper layering that's crucial to gold leaf making, and the right climate conditions. Let's take a brief look at the creation process that brings this delicate art to life.

1. Gold Mixing

Gold Mixing - Hakuichi ARTISTIC PRODUCTION PROCESS of GOLD LEAF

First, a small amount of silver and copper is mixed with gold. Pure gold (99.99%) is too soft and difficult to spread thinly, so silver and copper are added for pliability.

1. Gold Mixing

Gold Mixing - Hakuichi ARTISTIC PRODUCTION PROCESS of GOLD LEAF
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The alloy is then rolled into a thin, ribbon-like shape using a rolling machine. Repeated around 20 times, the material is thinned to 0.02-0.03 millimeters and cut into approximately 6 cm squares, referred to as "Koppe."

3. Beating

Beating - Hakuichi ARTISTIC PRODUCTION PROCESS of GOLD LEAF

The Koppe are further thinned by beating them out until they fill a sheet of paper. Once expanded to 12 cm squares, they're called "Aragane." Aragane is then cut into quarter sizes and extended to about 20 cm, becoming "Kojuu." Kojuu are further cut and stretched into "Oojuu." The final product, "Uwazumi," is sandwiched between finishing papers, reaching a thickness of about 0.001 millimeters.

4. Layering

Layering - Hakuichi ARTISTIC PRODUCTION PROCESS of GOLD LEAF

From here, the Uwazumi, already at 0.001 millimeters thick, is cut into smaller pieces, called "Koma." These are carefully layered between special papers for gold beating.

5. Pre-Beating

Pre-Beating - Hakuichi ARTISTIC PRODUCTION PROCESS of GOLD LEAF

The gold is fixed with specific skins or materials and beaten with a machine. Once beaten, it's transferred to a primary paper and spread to a thickness of 0.0001 to 0.002 millimeters.

Paper Preparation is crucial in gold leaf making. The quality of Washi (Japanese paper) used between the gold layers significantly impacts the final product's quality. The paper is treated with egg, persimmon tannin, and ash to make it strong enough to withstand beating without tearing.

6. Final Layering

Final Layering - Hakuichi ARTISTIC PRODUCTION PROCESS of GOLD LEAF

Once beaten, the gold leaf's quality is checked, and each piece is transferred to a "Hiromonocho" (expanding book). Using tools like bamboo chopsticks and Tengu claws that minimize static electricity, this delicate step involves handling the extremely thin gold leaf, vulnerable to the slightest breeze or static.

7. Gold Transfer

Gold Transfer - Hakuichi ARTISTIC PRODUCTION PROCESS of GOLD LEAF

In the final step, the gold leaf is trimmed and adjusted to standardized sizes (10.9 cm, 12.7 cm, 15.8 cm, and 21.2 cm squares) using a bamboo frame. The leaf is transferred onto a leather board with bamboo chopsticks, trimmed from all sides using the frame, and finally placed on a cutting paper to complete the process.

This detailed journey from raw materials to delicate gold leaf showcases Hakuichi's dedication to preserving this age-old art form.