Archive for the ‘About Japan’ Category


Saturday, March 12th, 2011

This is a resource page on ways you can help support the Japan earthquake relief effort. We hope that you will let your friends know about it as well. Together, we can make a difference.

UPDATE 3/17/2011:
Made with Japan has been holding a charity t-shirt campaign from this page to help aid in the relief efforts of the earthquake.  The $425.49 raised through this campaign was donated to the American Red Cross. We are ending this campaign and thank those of you who donated through us or directly to a charitable organization.

However, we are now working hard to be a part of something greater because we would like to make contributions in the largest ways possible and extend help for the long-term recovery. We are calling the help of artists, fashion designers, crafts people all around the world to participate in the online charity auction initiative, “Art Drive” Japan. I wish that you and your friends will join us.

“Like” Made with Japan on Facebook

Hi everybody. As most of you may know already, the devastating effects of the largest recorded earthquake in recent history of Japan, continues to injure and take the lives of many. There is no doubt that aid is needed right now during the aftermath.

As a way to help, 100% of profits from all sales of Made with Japan hand-printed t-shirts will be contributed to organizations directly involved in the earthquake and tsunami relief effort. I hope that our support will make a difference, as well as raise more awareness that everybody’s contributions even in the smallest amount will make a huge difference collectively. Remember, a million people contributing a mere $1 becomes a million dollars, $2 becomes $2 million.

To make this as simple as possible for you, the t-shirts are priced at $35 including shipping and taxes. The actual shipping costs will vary and we will subtract that amount as well as other costs from the donation . If you wish to make additional contributions, you may do so by clicking the “Additional Donations” button.
All payments are securely processed through PayPal. All major credit cards acccepted.

However please remember, the people in need will benefit more if you donate DIRECTLY to reputable organizations. It’s faster that way, and the money won’t get wasted in costs, transaction fees, and shipping. In all honesty, we urge you to do this rather than donate through Made with Japan. Please comment below to share yours thoughts and what you’ve done to help.

It’s sad but true, there are lurking con artists that will try to capitalize on the goodwill of sincere people like you who are looking to help. The FBI has issued a scam warning for Japanese disaster.

With that said, we encourage that you make donations only to reputable organizations that we know the money will be used for the proposed purpose. If you wish to donate directly, below is a list of trusted relief organizations.


Make a difference by donating to Japan relief efforts.
You can check which organizations are reliable yourself here.

The Red Cross
Accepting donations online and via text messages. To donate $10 to support their relief efforts, simply text REDCROSS to 90999 or visit them

International Medical Corps
Convoy of Hope
Salvation Army

Raise awareness (free)
Everybody can help without any cost to you. Please share this page or any other reliable resources to encourage people to help support the 2011 Japan earthquake relief.

If you are part of social networks such as facebook or twitter, or are part of an organization with a mailing list, please share resource pages such as this to raise awareness on how your contacts can help in the effort as well.

Please share information here that you find relevant.

Free Interpretation Service
Free telephone service to interpret English, Chinese, Korean available 24 hours a day. Portuguese and Spanish from 9:00 a.m to 8:00 p.m.. this isn’t an emergency information service.

Google Person Finder for 2011 Japan Earthquake
If you are looking for someone in Japan and currently can’t make contact or would like to leave information about someone.

How to Contact the U.S. Embassy, your family and friends
Telephone: 1-202-501-4444 or 1-888-407-4747

Crisis Response
Google providing the information regarding the disaster and damage with realtime updates.

NHK TV messaging service
If you want to send a message to someone where all phone lines are down, NHK will broadcast your message on their TV service. The numbers on which to place your message are 03 5452 8800, or 050 3369 9680.

Facebook App to instantly see status update of your friends in Japan
Use this app to see at one glance the latest status update of all of your friends who have their current location set to Japan.


Live News on Earthquake in Japan (English)

I would like to re-emphasize that, our ultimate goal is to maximize aid and minimize casualties. I sincerely urge you to share this and any other organizations for the same cause with your family and friends in your networks.

We as citizens of our planet collectively hold the potential to make the impossible possible, or the possible impossible.
The choice is ours and it can all start with the choice you make.

-Made with Japan

Please not that we will be shipping these items only once a week so please be patient while your order is being processed. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us.
All sizes are mens but smaller and more fitted than your average mens t-shirts. All sales are final.












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Thursday, December 16th, 2010


A series of amusing subway manner posters that appeared in Tokyo sometime between 1976 and 1982.

Careful not to get your bag caught between the train doors.



This poster shows the three types of trouble-making monsters on the train. As you can see, they are taking up space and being annoying. “Asshi-” crossing it’s legs. “Nesshi-” sleeping. “Shinbunshi-” opening up a newspaper when crowded.






Tuesday, October 13th, 2009


“So what exactly are those patterns on the Genjiko design?” I’ve been getting this question quite frequently so here is a brief explanation of our design and some information about those patterns.

Genjiko is an old game of enjoying incense. Our design uses all 54 of the Genji-mon geometrical design patterns which originally symbolized the combinations of the fragrances in the game. When working on this, Seiji Ohta’s concept was to make the pattern look like smoke from burning incense. This was also a good reason to print it a light gray.

Here’s a bit more history behind the Genjiko.

According to an article I found, there are few people in Japan who have a thorough undertanding of the Japanese incense ceremony, Kodo, while at the same time are very familiar with the Genji-mon (Genji Crests) that were assigned to the Chapters of “The Tale of the Genji” by early Incense Masters for the purpose of playing the incense game “Genji-ko.” Genji-ko is one of several “Incense Games.”  The Genji-mon patterns began showing up on the ukiyoe woodblock prints of the Edo period (1603-1867) and many people began to associate the Genji-mon with the original Genji chapters instead of Kodo.

The idea of all of these incense games is to enjoy the process of listening to each fragrant wood. These are not contests but simply methods for enjoying the fragrances and reawakening our sense of smell. There are no winners or losers in Kodo, just the simple elegance of enjoying fine incense.



Thursday, July 30th, 2009

Bowl of Sushi by Hiroshige

Since we created the “Neta Shari” design last week, I thought it would be courteous to share the history of sushi.

The History of Sushi

We can trace sushi’s origin back to the 4th century BC in Southeast Asia. As a preserved food, the salted fish, fermented with rice, was an important source of protein. The cleaned and gutted fish were kept in rice so that the natural fermentation of the rice helped preserve the fish. This type of sushi is called nare-zushi, and was taken out of storage after a couple of months of fermentation, and then only the fish was consumed while the rice was discarded.
Over time, it spread throughout China, and later, around the 8th century AD, in the Heian period, it was introduced into Japan. Since Japanese preferred to eat rice together with fish, the sushi, called seisei-zushi, became popular at the end of Muromachi period. This type of sushi was consumed while the fish was still partly raw and the rice had not lost its flavor. In this way, sushi became more of a cuisine rather than a way to preserve food.

Later in Edo era, Japanese began making haya-zushi, which was created as a way to eat both rice and fish; this dish was unique to Japanese culture. Instead of being only used for fermentation, rice was mixed with vinegar and combined not only with fish but also with various vegetables and dried preserved foods. Today, each region of Japan still preserves its own unique taste by utilizing local products in making different kinds of sushi that have been passed on for generations.

At the beginning of the19th century, when Tokyo was still called Edo, the food service industry was mostly dominated by mobile food stalls, from which nigiri-zushi originated. Edomae, which literally means “in front of Tokyo bay,” was where the fresh fish and tasty seaweed for the nigiri-zushi were obtained. As a result, it was also called edomae-zushi, and it became popular among the people in Edo after Yohei Hanaya, a creative sushi chief, improved it to a simple but delicious food. Then, after the Great Kanto earthquake in 1923, nigiri sushi spread throughout Japan as the skilled edomae-zushi chefs from Edo, who had lost their jobs, were diffused all over Japan.

In the 1980s, in the wake of increased health consciousness, sushi, one of the healthiest meals around, has gotten much more attention; consequently, sushi bars have increased in the United States. With the introduction of sushi machines, which combines the mass production of sushi with the delicate skills used by sushi chefs, making and selling sushi has become more accessible to countries all over the world.

Article source: (


Sunday, June 28th, 2009

Made with Japan Artisan + Designer Project T-shirt

Fuji Taka Nasubi
by Seiji Ohta

Ready to be shipped from our design studio.

“Ichi Fuji Ni Taka San Nasubi”
There is an old superstition that says you will have good luck if you dream of Mt. Fuji, a Hawk, and an Eggplant on the first day of the New Year. Can you find all three on this design?
Article: Hatsuyume

Each piece is individually hand-printed by Made with Japan on manual presses using high quality eco-friendly inks from Japan. Please embrace any slight variations or imperfections as a unique character only this garment has.

• Wash in cold water, dry on low heat.
• 100% combed ring spun jersey cotton
• Side seams, double-needle sleeve and bottom hems.
• Garment washed