About the product
[New craft form created by traditional lacquerware and silver tableware]
The "Lacquer Silver Cup" is a cup that allows you to enjoy the luxurious taste of "Chinese tea" in the comfort of your own home. The renewed Chinese tea cup can also be used as a drinking cup. We aimed to create a new form of craftsmanship, not only as a tea and sake cup but also as an interior decoration that gives off a sense of presence.
Please enjoy the marriage of "lacquer" and "silver" through the collaboration of silver and Wajima lacquerware, a traditional Japanese craft.
[Silverware for the senses x Insulating lacquerware]
The silver and lacquer make the tea soft to the palate, and the high ionic effect of the silver removes off-flavor, making the tea taste softer and mellower. This makes Chinese tea taste softer and mellower than usual.
Silver has excellent thermal conductivity, making cold things colder and warm things warmer. Hot tea or hot sake will be kept warm. When drinking cold sake or beer, the coolness of the liquid is transmitted to the material (silver) itself, and you can enjoy the cool sensation the moment you put your mouth on it. Silverware is a vessel that can be enjoyed with all five senses. However, silver's thermal conductivity is too high, making it too cold or too hot to hold by itself.
Therefore, the "Lacquer x Silver Cup" has a double-layered cup structure with a highly insulating lacquer surface wrapped around it. This enhances heat retention and at the same time allows the cup to be held by hand. Lacquer is also known as a healing paint because the warmth and thick texture of the lacquered skin are comforting. The comfort and mouth feel of the lacquerware is also attributed to its smooth surface, which has been polished many times.
[Wajima's five colors, born from craftsmanship]
Tea utensils made in Fujian Province in eastern China, famous for its tea production, were created to make the tea taste good, but now they have been renewed with a shape and design that fuses the Japanese feeling. The creamy appearance is produced from white lacquer. White lacquer is called so in the lacquerware world because it is a natural pigment that cannot be made any whiter.
The colors of the lacquer finish was created from a concept obtained by traditional craftsman Hiroshi Nakakado during a walk around Wajima. The vivid colors overturning the conventional image of Wajima lacquerware result from Mr. Hiroshi Nakakado's expertise in producing colors.
The "Lacquer x Silver Cups" are available in two types: the “Bokashi (Blur) Series” combining two colors, Wajima’s five colors and white lacquer, and the “Kasumi (Foggy) Series" using two colors, Wajima’s five colors and white lacquer, and made in the image of a haze over Wajima. Please enjoy the tea utensils that are fun to drink from and pleasing to the eye.
・GUNJYO Ultramarine Blue (群青): The sea of Wajima
・MOEGI Green (萌黄): The green land seen from the sea
・YAMABUKI yellow Gold (山吹): The color of the mountains of diatomaceous earth
・MOMOIRO Peach Pink (桃色): Cherry blossoms in Wajima beyond the diatomaceous earth
・SHINKU Red (真紅): Sunset on the earth of Wajima.
*Diatomaceous earth is used for the base of Wajima lacquerware.
[Silver's brilliance reflects the color of tea]
The luster of silver is said to be the most beautiful of all metals. The silver part of the "Lacquer x Silver Cup" is hand-polished many times to polish its beauty, and the original shine of silver is emitted.
It also reflects the color of the tea inside beautifully, allowing you to enjoy the tea visibly as well.
[Antibacterial Effects of Silver and Lacquer]
Silver has an antibacterial effect and is an excellent hygienic material. It keeps the material fresh, so it can be used comfortably even in hot summer and has almost no metallic smell. Although metal, it is soft and has a unique gentle feel. It is also widely used not only for tea utensils but also for sake cups and tableware for small children, as its antibacterial effect helps to keep beverages fresh.
*About the antibacterial properties of lacquer, we have not conducted antibacterial tests on this product.
[Special technique developed over five years]
Until now, combining wood and silver has been considered difficult due to the difference in expansion rate between the two materials. However, after five years of development, a special adhesive and bonding technique that bonded wood and silver only at the circumference of the tip of the drinking cup made it possible. This craftsmanship is the result of the strong culture of Chinese tea.
*Utility model granted in China
The Chinese character "lacquer" (漆) is made up of the parts "water" (水), "wood" (木) and "human" (人). As the origins of this character indicate, "lacquer" is the result of "water", "wood" and "human" becoming one.
Lacquer is a natural, health-friendly paint made from the sap of the lacquer tree trunk (raw lacquer) or refined from it. Many people are concerned that lacquer may cause a rash, but this is only the case when the lacquer is in its sap state and there is little risk of a rash once it has dried completely.
The sap from the lacquer tree is, to put it simply, like Canadian maple syrup. Lacquer is described as drying, but it dries by absorbing moisture from the air and hardening. Also, only about 200 g of lacquer can be extracted from a lacquer tree grown for 20 years. Lacquer is made by scratching the lacquer tree and the sap that the tree produces to form a pressure sore to protect the wound. However, if too many wounds are made, the tree weakens and dies, so only 200 g can be extracted from a tree grown for 20 years, making it a precious natural resource.
*Dried lacquer basically does not cause rashes, but in very rare cases, some people may not be constitutionally compatible with it.
Lacquer serves as a paint and adhesive, and its use in Japan has been confirmed since the Jomon period (approx. 13,000 to 23,000 yeas ago). Due to its robustness, durability and ease of decoration, it has been used in a wide range of lacquerware, from soup bowls used daily and stacked boxes used for festive occasions, to buildings, Buddhist statues and works of art representing various periods, supporting Japanese life and culture to the present day. The lacquer coating hardens about a year after completion, making it more durable, and the more it is used, the more its color and gloss increase, and it also has a high adhesive capacity and is used for gold-jointing.
Lacquer coating is a technique of repeatedly applying and wiping the lacquer, which allows the grain of the wood to show through and gives it a beautiful sheen. The process of applying raw lacquer, wiping with a cloth and allowing to dry allows the lacquer to soak into the wood, making it strong and repelling water and oil.
[History of Wajima lacquerware]
Wajima lacquerware was born from the connection between the natural features of Noto and its people.
Wajima-nuri is considered the representative of Japanese lacquerware, but the technique was established in the Edo period (1603-1867), and its remote location away from the capital has forced it to differentiate itself from other renowned lacquerware production areas such as Kyoto. Wajima lacquerware, which emerged relatively late, was the first in the country to be designated an Important Intangible Cultural Property and has grown to become Japan's number one in terms of production output.
Capacity: approx. 100 ml
Materials: silver, lacquer
Colors: available in five colors (GUNJYO ultramarine blue, MOEGI green, YAMABUKI yellow gold, MOMOIRO peach pink, SHINKU red)
Types; bokashi (blur) series, kasumi (foggy) series.
*If the silver has become dull, you can polish it with a silver polishing sheet to clean it.
*After use, you can wash it with a sponge and detergent as you would any other tableware. After washing, please let it dry naturally.
*For maintenance, you can send it to Taya Lacquerware Store for repainting on the outside only. Damage caused by dropping or scratches during use can also be repaired. (*Confirmation required*)
Please contact the maker in advance if you wish for the maintenance. Also, please check the following points.
*Available countries and regions:
Fedex can handle shipments from Japan to countries and regions where delivery is possible.
All shipping costs from your country to Japan and from Japan to your designated country will be the responsibility of the customer.
*Cases where maintenance cannot be provided depending on the condition of the product:
Maintenance can be provided at the usual cost for cases of deterioration due to aging. However, if the product has intentionally been damaged or requires extensive repair, appropriate fees will be charged.
*There may be cases where it takes time to return the product due to the global situation:
There is a possibility that the cost of repainting may increase due to factors such as an increase in the price of lacquer. Additionally, depending on the global situation, it may take time to return the product.
About the maker
Taya Lacquerware Store is a manufacturer and distributor of Wajima lacquerware (Wajima-nuri), established in 1818. While faithfully preserving the Wajima-nuri technique, the company is trying various things in search of new lacquerware possibilities, such as lacquer painting on architectural interiors and developing products that suit local lifestyles for overseas markets. For general customers in Japan, the company develops traditional, orthodox products that are never boring. Currently, three generations - Tsutomu Taya the 8th, Akihiro Taya the 9th and Takahiro Taya the 10th - are working at the same time, and together with 10 other craftsmen and employees, they carry out Wajima-nuri lacquerware production in Wajima.
Taya Takahiro, the 10th Generation
I had made up my mind to leave Wajima and live in Tokyo, but I could not forget the charm of Wajima-nuri, the family business, and returned to Wajima four years ago from Tokyo. I decided to follow in the footsteps of my grandfather and father and become a lacquerer (a general producer of Wajima lacquerware) in order to bring the robust and elegant (strong and beautiful) charm of Wajima lacquerware to the rest of the world. My future goal is to convey Wajima's lacquerware culture and the appeal of lacquer to Japan and the rest of the world.
I want to bring the appeal of lacquerware to Japanese people, who are increasingly turning away from lacquerware.
We often receive comments from customers such as "I don't know how to use lacquerware" or "I think lacquerware is not durable.
In the past, all households had furniture and tableware made of real lacquer, but nowadays only a limited number of households may have lacquerware. We developed this product in order to make people aware of the appeal of lacquerware in the first place. We hope that many people will have the experience of using lacquerware through this cup.