Kokeshi are Japanese dolls, originally from northern Japan. They are handmade from wood, have a simple trunk and an enlarged head with a few thin, painted lines to define the face. One important characteristic of kokeshi is their lack of arms or legs. The bottom is usually marked with the signature of the artist. Classified by two types, traditional and creative, traditional kokeshi usually have a floral design painted in red, black, and sometimes yellow on the body. The shapes and patterns are particular to a certain area and classified under eleven traditional types that usually correspond to a single or multiple onsen located within the Tōhoku region. Creative types, developed after World War II, allowed the artist complete freedom in terms of shape, design and color. They are not particular to a specific region of Japan and generally creative kokeshi artists are found in cities.
Today, the tradition is that they are exchanged among friends with written messages stored within them as tokens of friendship.
Our Kawaii Kokeshi Community
Resource Center Presentation
We got to hang out and talk to parents about our program and efforts as well as do more D.I.Y. with kids who were scheduled for other classes during kawaii art time.