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What is Mawata?

It is fluffy. It is suitable for thermal insulator or padding, used in goods such as jackets and bedding.  It is not cotton, however.  It is not down, either. Mawata (真綿)is formed by stretching silk cocoon. Since it is made with the same material, mawata has all the benefits that silk does: it’s warm and …

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Why Osaka Used to Be Called “The Nation’s Kitchen”

In Edo period (1603-1868), Osaka used to be called “the nation’s kitchen.” While moving its political center to Edo (current Tokyo), the Tokugawa shogun kept Osaka as the economic center. Rice and other goods produced in various regions in Japan were brought to Osaka, traded, and then transported to Edo, the center of consumption. The …

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Kounoike Shinden Kaisho – Another Place that Takes You Back in Time

The central part of Osaka was heavily bombed during World War II and most wooden buildings were burnt down. But in the suburbs east of Osaka City, a historical building still remains.  It’s called Kounoike Shinden Kaisho. Kounoike Family was the wealthiest merchants not only in Osaka but probably in Japan in 18th century.  After …

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