12 Shops in Kyoto to find Traditional Japanese Items

Kyoto is filled with many shops that sell all sorts of traditional Japanese knickknacks and useful items. These 12 shops here carry some of the most interesting and beautiful items that you must not miss out on. Stop by to treat yourself to a little something or buy them as gifts to bring home.



1. Kyoto Kakefuda

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Kakefuda, which is located right in front of Chion-in in Kyoto's Higashiyama Ward, has been around since 1925 and they started of as a traditional dye shop. While it still carries some traditional designs, Kakefuda started focusing on more modern and chic designs from 2005.  Step right in here to get beautiful cloths, which you can use as decorative items and scarves. You can even tie them into bags. 


2. Kyoto Chidoriya Ginkaku-ji Branch

In the past, this store once catered only to the beautiful Maiko (apprentice geisha) in Kyoto, but now it is not only famous worldwide but has become a household brand in Japan after receiving great reviews from its first sale and promotion in New York. Here, your eyes will grow big in wonder at all the pretty Japanese accessories that Maiko usually carry like coin pouches, bags, hand mirrors and kimono belt accessories. Besides accessories, Chidoriya is also famous for their natural cosmetics that are also bought and used by celebrities. 


3. Takezasado

Takezasado is a woodblock printing shop that has been around since 1891. Their in-house designer, Yuko Harada, who is Takezasado's 6th generation, creates wonderful designs that are very well-loved among customers. The items sold here from stationery to knickknacks, were carefully designed and made by hand.


4. Izawaya

From its first day of business to this very present day, Maiko and traditional stage performers come here to purchase kimono accessories. Besides being known as a household item among Kyoto's traditional artisans, they are famous for their traditional cloths with zodiac prints. It started off by selling oil-blotting handkerchiefs  and now it is filled with various accessories. You might want to get that cute bag with goldfish on it. 


5. Uragu

Come here to appreciate traditional Japanese stationery. The founders of the shop named it Uragu based on the Japanese word Uragu that meant "joy". When you come here and see the stationery they have, from cute memo pads to beautiful money envelopes to chic diaries, you will understand why the owners named this shop after "joy". 


6. Tsujitoku

Kaishi is a form of Japanese paper that can be used for various scenarios, like serving dainty Japanese sweets and so forth. To know more about kaishi, this is where you would have to head to. This shop sells all sorts of kaishi paper in different colors, shapes and sizes. Besides paper, there are aromatherapy oils made available too! All you need is just one tiny drop of this oil on your kaishi paper, then slip it into your shirt pocket, and you will be smelling awesome the whole day! This shop makes a great souvenir stop if you are looking for gifts for your sophisticated friends and family members!


7. Suzuki Shofudo

Step into a wonderland of paper here with over 150 types of cute knickknacks that are made of  paper. You might find the spaghetti case here made from Japanese traditional paper not only chic but handy in helping you measure the right amount of spaghetti to cook! There is also a gallery here that organizes Japanese paper craft workshops for you!


8. Tsujiwa Kanaami

They've been around for more than 80 years and this is where you come to get handmade wire-mesh items that were carefully made with a lot of love. You might be wondering what these wire-mesh items are used for. If you are into Japanese cooking, these items wouldn't be all too foreign to you. There are tea strainers, mesh baskets, dining utensils, grill meshes and so forth. This is the place that some of the finest chefs in the country come to, to get their hands on high-quality wire-mesh items. 


9. Owariya


This incense shop is cozy and one of the reasons why we love it is because the owner came up with the most creative idea by creating Kanari Damas, which are colorful balls that are filled with fragrant incense. These incense balls are great in keeping the clothes in your drawers smelling great the whole time. Besides Kanari Dama that keep your clothes fragrant, there are also incense balls that help keep those pesky insects away and they are known for being very effective!


10. Yumekoubou

If you are in the mood for antiques and ancient art, you should come to this place and step right back into the past as they carry items that date back as far as 300 years ago! Be amazed by the beautiful lacquerware and ceramics and if you plan to buy them, do remember that you can't use them with your microwave ovens! The items here are simply breathtaking. Even if you can't afford antiques, you should just stop by here for the experience.  


11. Marumasu Nishimuraya

Having been around for more than a century, this shop carries all sorts of handmade Japanese knickknacks like smartphone cases and you wouldn't help but want to get one cause they are just so cute! Your fingers won't be able to help but linger over their book covers, small tote bags, lipstick cases and so forth that beautifully captures the traditional elements of Japanese art with the current modern chic style. 


12. Kazurasei

Founded in 1865, this store started off selling high-quality Japanese camellia oil made from Japanese camellias found on the Goto Islands. Their cosmetics here are well loved among famous Japanese celebrities and are always featured in magazines for their moisturizing effects that will make your hair shine and skin glowing all day long. 


The information in this article is accurate at the time of publication.

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