Nishijin is a historical area in the heart of Kyoto where Hineno Katsujiro Syoten is situated. But did you know Nishijin is not an official administrative name of a place?
Nishijin derives from the Onin War (1467-1477) in which the West and East armies fought across the Hori river in Kyoto. The area where the West army set up their camp came to be known as “Nishijin,” literally meaning the camp in the west, and has been called by this name even to today.
Widely known as the birthplace of Nishijin woven textile, Nishijin has become the center of kimono culture in Kyoto. Though the kimono-related businesses in Nishijin have been decreasing over time, it used to be a bustling place with the sound of looms echoing throughout the neighborhood.
This is the only area in Kyoto where you can find centuries-old townhouses lining up on both sides of the streets. Today, some of these well-preserved townhouses are turned into cafes, shops and restaurants. Walking through these narrow streets will make you realize the centuries of history of Kyoto.
New Brand with New Inspiration
Hineno Katsujiro Syoten was originally established in Mibu in Kyoto, but was moved to Nishijin in later years. Since our foundation in 1952, we have been in the business of “shikkaiya” which coordinates and controls the production process of Kyo-yuzen hand-dyed fabric.
The Kyo-yuzen dyeing technique was established in Kyoto more than 300 years ago. Famous for its vibrant colors, Kyo-yuzen has been recognized as one of the most beautiful kimono fabrics in Japan.
As the Japanese lifestyle has drastically changed, kimonos have shifted from everyday clothes to something worn only on special occasions. In an attempt to share the beauty of Kyo-yuzen fabrics with as many people as possible, we launched our new brand “Kyoto no Someya ga Tsukutta ™,” or “Made by Kyoto Yuzen Craftsmen.”
From face masks to stylish watch straps, all our items can easily blend into the modern-day lifestyle. We have been actively promoting our unique products at numerous fairs and exhibitions.
Lifestyle Products Proudly Dyed in Kyoto
“Chameleon Band for Apple Watch” uses the Kyo-yuzen hand-dyed fabrics originally made for kimonos while having a variety of colors and shapes. In order to maximize the aesthetic of the fabrics, we also made the molds for our straps from scratch. As the hand-dyed fabrics have different appearances and textures, all our straps are one-of-a-kind.
The upper and lower parts of the straps can be purchased separately, so you can simply create your own combo according to the situation, your mood and outfit. All our straps are made with 100% silk with cowhide lining done by leather specialists. Available in two sizes with deployment clasps, these straps will fit anyone’s wrist while being easily taken off without damaging the delicate silk fabric.
“Kinumasuku,” which refers to a face mask made with silk, is a unisex face mask which comes in two different shapes. Being one of the vital items in this fast-changing world, we created these masks in the hopes of adding some colors of Kyo-yuzen to your everyday lives.
Having a three-layered structure with silk, non-woven fabric and cotton gauze, these masks can be easily worn at any time of the year. The outer silk fabric is excellent at absorbing and releasing moisture while protecting your skin from UV rays – ideal for everyday use.
Kyoto Dyed Fabric for Everyday Life
As a three-generation company with 70 years of experience, we have inherited an extensive knowledge of producing excellent hand-dyed fabrics. Cooperating with more than 150 specialized manufacturers, we continue to strive to put more value on Kyo-yuzen fabrics.
We set up the “Made by Kyoto Yuzen Craftsmen” brand in the belief that Kyo-yuzen will still have a place in today’s world. Only using silk kimono fabrics which are hand-dyed in Kyoto, we create practical, functional and high-in-quality items while meeting the needs of modern lifestyles.
On each cut of fabric, we apply our fullest aesthetic sensitivities. We hope everyone who chooses our products will enjoy the beauty of the Kyo-yuzen dyeing technique while using them everyday.
2016: Traditional Craftsman Certificate (Kyo-yuzen Stencil Dyeing Division)
2018: Kyoto Prefecture “Genki” Small and Medium-sized Enterprises Certificate
2021: Omotenashi Nippon Selection Interior/Fashion Award (Cameron Band for Apple Watch)