A Perfect Summer Fan.

I could use a good, beautiful summer fan, given that are temps are in the withering range.* These not only express a specific concept, they are also part a very old papermaking process, and with my deep and abiding love for paper, makes this an even more enticing item.

Komorebi (木漏れ日) is one of those uniquely untranslatable Japanese words. It means “sunlight filtering through the tree leaves” and embodies a poetic appreciation for nature and its changing seasons. Capturing that aesthetic, and embedding it into a beautiful handheld fan (uchiwa), is designer Kotoko Hirata, who created the Komorebi Uchiwa.

Escape the summer heat with this beautiful handheld fan made from Echizen Washi paper, a traditional Japanese craft with a 1500-year history. Artisans steeped in the tradition create leaf patterns by hand so when sunlight hits the fan a silhouette of tree leaves appear. It’s a lovely reminder that there are ways of appreciating the summer, rather than escape into air conditioning.

Once the paper is completed it’s transported to Kyoto where fan makers, known for their kyo-uchiwa, create the radial wooden skeleton of the fan and merge it with the paper.

More at Spoon & Tamago, where you can buy this beautiful fan.

*On the bright side, this is the quietest 4th ever, with none of the months of assholes setting off fireworks preceding it. The silence is lovely.

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