about me

Thank you for stopping by umecrafts.com!

The name Umecrafts comes from my family name, Umeda, which means plum tree field in Japanese. People across the world are familiar with the beautiful “sakura” (or cherry blossom trees) of Japan, but Japanese also enjoy viewing the lovely “ume” trees that bloom just weeks earlier.   

Growing up in Japan, I expressed myself through many traditional Japanese crafts. And after I moved to the United States with my family, I wanted to share my love of them through this blog. 

While I love many Japanese crafts, tsumami zaiku is my passion. “Tsumami” means to tuck or pinch, and “zaiku” means craft. Tsumami zaiku is the art of making beautiful flowerlike hair accessories like Geisha wear. 

We make them from many pieces of square cloth tucked together. The difference of tuck, material, color, and size of the cloth gives the pieces their richness. Creating Japanese hair accessories is actually simple to learn, but the process takes a lot of time, and the art can take a lifetime to master.

I hope everyone will join me in discovering tsumami zaiku and many other rich Japanese crafts!

Haruka Willey