During my tour of the Tulip plant and offices I saw this package of enormous pins. They are large replicas of the cellulose head pins seen on the left. I'm told teachers use these large ones for demonstration/educational purposes.
Please forgive me if you must sit through this while I tell the story once again:
For many years Tulip has been providing sewing kits to 4th graders studying handicrafts. Among the items in the sewing kit is a cellulose head pin. The children are encouraged to write their name on it, learning the value of the smallest tool.
How I love that story. It seems to me quintessentially Japanese. In contrast to my experience of elementary school...learning to use paper cups and a growing number of other disposable items.
Tulip staff knows I am charmed by this story, these pins and even more, to know Mr Harada's father invented the machine that made their first cellulose head pins.
Until a few months ago, before having my first Tulip fine beading awl, these pins were my fav item to tease knots open in beading thread.
Fumiko Ishikawa gifted me this 3 level lacquerware bento box. It is decorated with momiji, or maple leaves, the symbol of Hiroshima. We didn't have a chance to visit after I opened her gift and didn't ask it's origins. But, looking on line, it was made in Ishikawa prefecture. (This prefecture shares her name.) In Kyoto and Kamakura there was so much lacquerware I admired. I am delighted to have this gorgeous bento box as a reminder of Fumiko and this wonderful time in Japan. Plus, I carry at least one meal a week with me. This 4.5" cube will be a beautiful way to pack and enjoy these meals.
There... I seriously hope this concludes my posts about this recent trip to Japan.
There might be posts that describe the factory tour, but only when I start to put that all together.
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