The origin of the Kokeshi doll is a mystery. It has been said that the Kokeshi doll started in the Tohoku district in the late Edo or early Meiji period, but there are various opinions about the birthplace. The wood crafters of the mountainside villages made it as a toy for children, and the dolls have unique designs and features rooted in each region…
The wood used to make Kokeshi dolls are from Cornel, Mono maple, Cherry trees and Pagoda. Trees are cut and dried during winter time, and artisans continue to dry them enough to shape them on a potter’s wheel with a plane or a knife, called Bankaki. The artisans draw the Kokeshi’s face and body, then apply wax on it.
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