Listed in geographical order from north to south, these makers best represent the heritage of monozukuri ("the art of making") in Japan and around the world.
Conde House was started nearly half a century ago, in Hokkaido, Japan. Since their founding, the main mission of Conde House has always been simple: To make furniture of the highest quality that uses timeless design, for you to enjoy. Furniture that lasts long enough to acquire a patina of age, is a remarkable trait that few products can claim. A piece of furniture serves a simple purpose. There are no complicated reasons. Furniture needs only to be simultaneously pleasing to look at, superbly comfortable, and durable, so that it can be enhanced by natural patina, as only a truly crafted object can attain. Conde House makes furniture for people who instinctively know what they like.
With abundant supply of raw materials such as high quality timber, it is no surprise that Asahikawa developed to be one of the epicenter of premium furniture workshops. This vibrant area attracted a new generation of aspiring craftsmen and designers to come here to explore the possibility of woodworking. Takumi Kohgei is one of the most prominent workshops in the area creating high quality furniture with cutting edge designs.
Established in 1865 by Mohei Suzuki IV, Suzumo (Suzuki Mohei Shoten) continues to manufacture and sell chochinwholesale to this day. For nearly one and a half centuries they have kept the art of making Suifu Chochinalive, and have striven to popularize the use of chochin by making them for festivals and other events and distributing them throughout Japan. Although the role of chochin has changed over the years, they diligently carry on with the traditional techniques passed down to us by our forebears and wish to pass on those techniques to future generations and further broaden the appeal of chochin. Traditional techniques are important, but Suzumo also add such features as LEDs to provide safe and efficient light, and sound sensors make it possible to turn on the chochin with a clap of the hands. Chochin that can simply be placed on the floor without hooks or connecting wires make it easy to enjoy the soft light of chochin without any fuss, and serve not only as lighting but as objects of art that add a touch of class to any interior. In this busy modern world, chochin can create an oasis of light that soothes and comforts.
Japan is an island nation stretching from north to south.For this reason, the country is blessed with richness in nature and has four varied and distinct seasons.The Japanese way of life has been deeply influenced by nature and has nurtured their culture that reflects sensitivity to the changing seasons.Our aim is to make products through which modern people can find new value in the Japanese appreciation for natural materials and the careful workmanship of skilled craftsmen in each district.Richness…more than just the values of good function and comfort.It is these artistic products, like the landscape of Japan, speak quietly to the five senses.Through creating these products, Studio Gala continues to pursuit the richness of life-style that does not change.
One fine day in 1920 (the 9th year of the Taisho era), two travelers came to the town of Hida Takayama, a mountainous area near the Northern Japan Alps of Gifu, and passed down the technique of making Western bentwood furniture. This story touched the hearts of some people in the town of Takayama. They got together and decided to stake shares in launching a western furniture manufacturer by utilizing the traditional technique known as“Master Craftsmanship of Hida”. And as for resources, they used the virgin “Buna”(beech) forests, which grew thick and unused in the mountains. This was the birth of an epoch-making business venture. Those craftsmen had never seen, in real life, the thing called“chair”. But supported not only by their years of experience and knowledge of wood, but by their ingenuity and patience as well, they came to produce, after 2 years of near countless trial and error, not just a chair, but one using local traditional technique. With that success, they were able to confidently put “chair” into the world. From that early beginning, the furniture of Hida Sangyo contributed to the modernism of Western culture, which in Japan was the beauty of the early Showa Era. The company continuously nurtured the culture of Japanese furniture and prudently placed export to the USA at the core of their production. After World War II, Hida Sangyo’s excellent design and quality gained popularity, and by manufacturing various long-selling products, the furniture of Hida Sangyo established a firm place in Japanese lifestyles. Carrying on the founding spirit of the company to this day, the new challenges and creativity of Hida Sangyo ―such as introducing under-used resources and the utilization of scrap wood for furniture production― have brought about the production of furniture which is deeply rooted in the climate and culture of Japan.
The tradition of furniture making in the Hida/Takayama began about 1,200 years ago. The local craftsmen were summoned to the Asuka to build the first capital of the country. Their works were highly revered and for centuries, “Hida craftsman” became the symbol of the highest quality of woodworking. Kashiwa inherited this tradition and with their outstanding woodworking techniques, contemporary design, and thorough quality control, they are one of the best workshops of wood furniture in Japan.
Nissin is a long-established furniture maker located in Hida Takayama, a major area for furniture production in Japan. Since its foundation in 1946, pursuing the concept of “using traditional techniques to provide modern-style furniture that fits a modern lifestyle,” skilled crafters have been carefully manufacturing products from the best materials. Since the 1960s, the company has continued to develop designed products with original designs, taking inspiration from Scandinavian-style furniture. The simple and beautiful design is well-suited to Japanese homes. All products are quality guaranteed for 10 years. Since it is responsible for the entire manufacturing process, the company spares no efforts in pursuing high quality and offers furniture that lets you feel the warmth of wood and use it for many years.
Sugiyama Seisakusho was a automobile steel frame manufacturer for years, utilized its deep metal casting and welding know-how to make incredibly elegant furniture. Believing in the unique characteristics of steel, the company's mission is to explore and develop the possibilities and limits of steel in furniture making.
In 1940, Karimoku took its first steps as a woodworking shop in Kariya, in the suburbs of Nagoya, Japan's third largest city. Since then, it has been committed to its love of trees and have steadfastly provided fine quality wooden furniture. The Karimoku brand has been firmly established as a synonym of fine quality furniture and proof of reliable furniture, a reputation that it has maintained to this day. They aspire to making furniture that creates a comfortable living space and will continue to be loved as a lifelong partner.