12 28 2020

Hayato & Mika Nishiyama from Mitate

Back before Hayato and Mika Nishiyama opened Mitate in Shichiku, Kyoto, they worked at an ordinary flower shop, where they couldn’t help but wonder why the market carried mostly foreign species that were available all throughout the year. Mitate was born on a quest to create a flower shop that stays true to the passing of seasons.


The name Mitate, which roughly translates to ‘resemble’ or ‘symbolize’, refers to the sense of beauty seen in many Japanese arts such as tea ceremonies, Japanese gardens and rakugo. By showing something in a different context than how it is normally seen, we are able to discover new value and awareness of things, times, and places that may be overlooked otherwise. For instance, by picking seasonal lively plants and flowers from the garden and arranging them in a broken bowl in place of a vase, we are able to appreciate the season as we live through it.


Every year, Mitate creates a unique collection of Japanese New Year decorations as a way to usher in prosperity. Hayato and Mika visit the shrine before going into the mountains where they collect wild grasses and branches, which are then turned into decorations such as “Kake-Horai,” representing a dragon climbing Mt. Horai which is said to bring in good luck, “Fuji,” a composition of Mt. Fuji which is said to be auspicious when appeared in the first dream one has in the new year, made by 88 pieces of rice straws, and “Kadomatsu,” which is said to welcome the toshigami diety, from the Shinto belief that divine spirits reside in trees.


Shihara Lab and Shihara Osaka will celebrate the coming of 2021 with New Year decorations from Mitate. May the New Year bless you with health and happiness.




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