Square, Wooden Flower Vases

Square, Wooden Flower Vases

Simple flower vases created using traditional arts techniques

We produced several flowers vases for a certain exhibition in collaboration with a master of flower arrangement.
These designs use subtle colors and forms to highlight the flowers and their arrangement. Copper foil has been applied on the interior to finish the vases.

TitleSquare, Wooden Flower Vases
ThemeFlower vases, interior design objects
TechniquesWoodworking, finishing, maki-e, gold leaf application
MaterialsHiba, cashew finish, gold powder, aluminum powder, gold leaf, varnish, copper foil
SizeVase ARARE width: 249mm, height: 140mm, depth: 838mm
Vase GOLD width: 130mm, height: 180mm, depth: 99mm
Vase RED width: 99mm, height: 140mm, depth: 99mm

Integrated traditional materials and techniques

Hiba wood, which is also used for cutting boards and is water resistant, is used for the frame. It is also strong enough to serve as a vase.
Taking into account the brilliance of the gold leaf below, a matte cashew finish is applied. The decorative gold leaf and maki-e are coated with a varnish to prevent them from peeling or rubbing off.
To produce a vessel capable of holding water, copper sheets are welded together and finished with black nickel gilding to increase their durability.

  1. Woodworking

    Working with unfinished wood is an important initial process for creating the foundation or frame of a product.
    Woodworking at INOUE is based on the exacting quality found in the traditional arts that have been cultivated by the production of Buddhist altars in the castle town of Hikone since the Edo Period (1603-1868 CE). Craftsmen produced these altars by hand and without nails, demanding uncompromising quality in the careful selection of the best materials for use in mortise and tenon construction. These altars are durable enough to be handed down through many generations. Furthermore, we have connections with woodworking shops in other areas that specialize in mass production, allowing us to select the appropriate methods of woodworking for any project.

  2. Maki-e

    Maki-e is an artistic lacquer technique that involves drawing pictures or patterns using lacquer and then sprinkling them with gold dust or other fine powders. Maki-e originates in Japan and is one of the unique traditional techniques developed here. Maki-e includes many subsidiary techniques, such as hiramakie, takamakie, and togidashimakie. Furthermore, maki-e includes a wide variety of different end products, such as the expression of depth through different types or sizes of gold powder and the application of a variety of processing techniques.
    At INOUE, we have built a network of maki-e craftsmen with a wide range of skills, allowing us to provide the skills needed for any project, from projects demanding the utmost quality to those needing to fit into a tight budget.

  3. Gold plating (Hakuoshi, hakuhari, or hakuoki)

    Hakuoshi is a decorative technique for covering items with gold or silver leaf or platinum foil.
    While the material is called “gold leaf,” it includes a variety of types. These range from gold with a high degree of purity to silver admixtures that allow for an adjustment of the foil’s color. Techniques for applying the gold leaf include methods that bring out the luster of the foil as well as methods that create an elegant or refined appearance.
    At INOUE, veteran craftsmen employ a wide variety of methods for gold leaf application. We have also developed techniques for the application of gold leaf to modern materials, such as acrylic resin and glass.

  4. Finishes (cashew, urethane, etc.)

    At INOUE, the quality of our finishes is consistently and carefully scrutinized with a watchful eye. From sophisticated traditional techniques such as base coats of natural lacquer to cashew finishes made with the natural resin of the cashew tree, also a member of the lacquer family, to urethane finishes made with synthetic resins, we provide a wide variety of finishing techniques.
    Given our extensive network of craftsmen with unparalleled technical skill, we can fulfill requests for finishes of nearly any kind.