Shades of colors rooted in a forgotten time in places where fashion and style have held sway at one time or another – these are the colors that have fascinating stories to tell. Colors of importance have a verve that enriches everyday life with their personality. Kikusumi brand creates kitchen tools and tableware that are rooted in design history yet express something contemporary. Just as a traditional craft spirit informs each Kikusumi kitchen product so does the history of fashion and colors. Each Kikusumi color is chosen to add an element of beauty to products with the hope of inspiring the cook’s creativity each time it is put to use. Traditional Japan often chose colors that offered a connection to one of the four seasons. Since ancient times subtle shades of colors and shapes have been used their to express those feelings in paintings, textiles, ceramics, poetry, literature and food. All are cultural vessels of expression.
At Kikusumi we also choose colors to transmit the emotions that inspire creativity in cooking. We hope you enjoy the colors inspired by the history of beautiful objects.
umi-iro, is gray-black and one of the five colors of black used in calligraphy. The ink used for writing was made by kneading rapeseed oil or pine soybean (soot) together with a glue. The ink color was a primary choice for dyeing monk’s uniforms form ancient times and into the modern era. The process to create SUMI black ink began by mixing soot, chestnut or pine tree and rapeseed oil into a dye from the flowering tree sappanwood Sumi is also the Japanese word for charcoal and Kiku means chrysantheum flower. Kikusumi name comes from the ancient charcoal making process which shares a similar process to the making of black ceramic knives. It is for this reason that SUMI black is one of the core colors of our brand.
SUMI Sumi-iro 墨色 Black
Origin: Ancient Japan
kabeni or BENI red is a brighter shade of red that first came into use during the early Edo period Tenpō (1830~1844). As the Tenpō period drew to a close garments like the Kosode (a robe similar to a modern kimono) were often requested to be tie-dyed in fashionable BENI red (Akabeni). The staining process required to create BENI red involved creating a dye from the flowering tree sappanwood (similar to red cedarwood). Its use dates all the way back to the Nara period and since the Edo era, BENI red has developed into a first choice color for modern luxury goods such as the kimono.
BENI Akabeni 赤紅 Red
Origin: Nara – Edo Japan