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Sugihara Paper
Reborn in 1972 Hyogo
Date:05, Jul, 2019
Investigated and Written by Misaka Youhei
About our introductory articles


Hello, everybody. I'm talking about Sugihara Paper, a kind of washi today. I guess we can find few who know something about Sugihara Paper. Well, don't be shy. No problem. I'm mentioning about it now.



Sugihara Paper
File: Washi(Sugihara paper).JPG
from the Japanese Wikipedia
(Photoed on August 27, 2005)

Sugihara Paper is the Japanese paper (washi) exclusively produced in Taka-cho, Hyogo. They say Sugihara Paper was very popular in the Middle Ages of Japan. Of course, they used to produce it all over Japan, and there were a variety of the paper. Anything has its ups and downs, however. Other kinds of washi raised their heads in the Edo era. In the Meiji era, western paper did, too. Those drove Sugihara Paper into a corner. It's said there was no Sugihara Paper in the market of the Taisho era's end.

In other words, Sugihara Paper became extinct in 1920's.

When one door shuts another opens. Some tried to find out where the paper had originally come from, in 1930's. Shinmura Izuru, a popular linguist (1876 – 1967) was one of them. Sugihara Paper had originally come from Taka-cho, Hyogo. They found it out beyond the winding road in 1940. By the research, they established Sugihara Paper Research Center there in 1972. They started to produce Sugihara Paper again there.



Sugihara Paper Research Center
File: Sugiharagami research center.jpg
from the Japanese Wikipedia
(Photoed on March 4, 2018)

Sugihara Paper is made from paper mulberries, just like other washi. They used to add rice flour, but today don't. It's said adding rice flour causes insect plagues on the paper. It means the present Sugihara Paper is fundamentally different from the one produced in old times. The present one is stronger than the bygone one.





 

Kurotani-washi
The Japanese Paper in Ayabe, Kyoto

Shiroishi-washi
Has Been Produced in Shiroishi, Miyagi