Okinawa Tourism Information:GoodswithFantastical,ColorfulBingata

Goods with Fantastical, Colorful Bingata

post : 2015.01.03 16:00

These bingata (Okinawan traditional dyeing) are like a colorful fairytale.
The bingata created by Asuka Kamegai, owner of the bingata general store “Nijigame Shoten” in Nanjo City, Okinawa, are different from the traditional ones, just like they come from a new fantasy world.

Also, these bingata take several forms usable in everyday life, like paper lanterns, pouches, mobile phone cases, clothes, and hanging scrolls.

The especially popular paper lamps reminds of colorful shadow pictures, overlapping the light illuminating from the back and the expression techniques of bingata that uses the stamps.

It is also possible to order customized original items, like wedding welcome boards or doorplates for the house.

“When I receive a custom order, I often think about original designs to use only once for that particular person.” Saying this, Kamegai begins to carve a stamp for a custom order.

Usually, stamps are used to reproduce many times the same pattern, so carving them only for one item shows her seriousness about it.

She showed me the original stamp minutely carved for the Ryukyu glass and yachimun pottery shop “Hibiscus” on Kokusai Street, and the delicacy and beauty took my breath away.

The motif of the bingata Kamegai is creating are Banyan figs and whales that are rooted in the nature of Okinawa, and sea.

Among the classical patterns for bingata there are many things brought from the mainland culture, like chrysanthemums, peonies, cranes and turtles, while Okinawa nature motifs are unexpectedly limited.

However, Kamegai, since she came alone to Okinawa on a trip during high school, she fell in love with Okinawa and its nature, so she chose the island to continue her studies.

The emerald green that is not among the classical colors express the beauty of the Okinawan sea.

After this, it seems like, more patterns will be developed and while expanding a worldwide view she will try to produce bigger things.

“I started by selling on the side of the road, so I think of not just when it is finished, but its ability to be used in everyday life.”

As a gift for yourself or a souvenir from Okinawa for someone special.
Colorful, refined Okinawan goods should make anyone happy regardless of age.

As at this moment there is a booth on the 1st floor of the Zampa Royal Hotel you can experience dyeing Asuka’s bingata with original patterns. It must be fun to make a bingata item for yourself, of which there is a feeling that it is truly unique.

For guests who say they saw Okinawa Clip, they will receive an original postcard from Nijigame Shoten!

335-1 Tamagusuku Shikenbaru, Nanjo-shi, Okinawa
Tel: 090-8293-1138
Hours: 11:00am-5:30pm (Closed Thursdays, Sundays)

Okinawa Clip Photowriter Sandy


335-1 Tamagusuku Shikenbaru, Nanjo-shi, Okinawa