Monday, April 18, 2011

Guestpost: celebrating and Making Sakura

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By Greg from StylishHome

image by photographybykarina

Where I live we are having a late spring, but the cherry trees have just come out in full bloom. We have them throughout the city and they got me to thinking about their deep and rich history, particularly in Japan.
In English, “sakura” refers to the Japanese flowering cherry and “hanami” is the centuries-old practice of picnicking under a blooming sakura tree. Today, millions visit parks and gardens to see the sakura and celebrate. The sakura is a cultural institution in Japan and can be found in art, décor, clothing, and gardens. Most Japanese schools and public buildings have sakura trees planted outside. The cherry blossoms have come to represent the ephemeral nature of life. Their beauty and short life are often associated with our own mortality. The beautiful trees really make you stop and appreciate life, especially in light of the recent natural disasters in Japan. In that spirit, 100% of proceeds from the above sakura photo will be donated to Japan via the Swedish Red Cross. Who wouldn’t want to picnic under one of these beauties?!

Top left: Called “Down the Rabbit Hole,” this looks positively enchanting.
Top right: Morning light on a row of cherry trees.
Bottom left: Cherry trees in front of the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, France.
Bottom right: Classic pink cherry blossoms with a great film look.

A picnic wouldn’t be complete without a nice cup of tea. Why not take several teacups with you and enjoy the afternoon with friends.

Top left: Ceramic clay teacup to keep your tea warm on a cool spring day.
Top right: The sakuras are hand-painted by Japanese artisans.
Bottom left: Very delicate hand-painted cherry blossoms.
Bottom right: Small bird and sakura with gold accents.

Feeling relaxed and rejuvenated yet? What a perfect time to put your skills and energy into your own beautiful sakura creation. You can create elegant décor items with sakura fabric. The blossom patterns are beautiful all year round. What will you create?

Top left: This Yuzen Chirimen silk fabric is gorgeous. Made by a kimono-dyeing artisan in Kyoto.
Top right: The rubber stamp material is imported from Japan.
Bottom left: Bright and classic sakura patterns.
Bottom right: A tonal yarn reminiscent of cherry blossoms.

Five ways you can help earthquake and tsunami victims in Japan.