Our journey has begun from a study of traditional craft in Tohoku. When I studied traditional craft of my home town as an assignment in my college, I found a treasure in that I have never noticed.
Miyagi traditional craft is very common for people in Miyagi. Every house in rural area has Kokeshi dolls and it was regarded as "legacy in old days". That is nothing special and not attractive, especially for younger generations.
However, the impression was totally changed when I visited Miyagi Zao Kokeshi Museum. In the museum, there are lots of "paintings" of Kokeshi on the wall. When I saw Kokeshi dolls, I focused on the "face" of Kokeshi dolls and did not pay much attention to the patterns in their body, however if it seen as "pictures", I realized my heart was beating for the beauty of the patterns. The patterns' color are natural and cute, and the patterns are so sophisticated that I cannot believe it was made 200 years ago.
Through the study of the assignment, I came to know that how the craftsman have been struggling to protect the patterns which has developed by their ancestors. As time goes by, human started to play with plastic toys with characters of anime and comic books. Some of them has shifted to make Kokeshi dolls with the characters, however most of them are not willing to do it and keep making the traditional crafts with their original design due to respect of their legacy left by their predecessors, usually their fathers and grandfathers. The patterns used in their body were inherited in their family and refined through 200 years of history. I really desire to spread their passions and history by using creating products for daily life with their lovely design.
Koquela want to contribute to thrive Tohoku region by delivering the products with the design of traditional Kokeshi dolls and spreading the value to all over the world. We are more than happy if you like our products, have interest in our culture and visit our hometown. Then you will be part of "Tohoku renaissance" and help to recovery of Tohoku's society and preservation of our tradition.