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JF Original Furoshiki


The Japan Foundation (JF) held in autumn 2010 the Second International Furoshiki Design Contest for students studying designs in 9 countries overseas, such as Germany, Indonesia, Australia, Canada, US, Brazil, Russia, Vietnam and Singapore. Among all 217 submissions, the designs of one winner of Grand Prize (Vietnam) and three of Prize for Excellence (Singapore, United States and Canada) were newly adopted as JF original furoshiki.

Furoshiki are traditional Japanese cloths used to wrap small objects.They are an expression of Japan’ s unique “wrapping culture” .With the focus on environmental problems in recent years, furoshiki are attracting renewed attention as they can be used over and over again.

JF Original Furoshiki

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<Grand Prize>
Title: Banana leaf – furoshiki
Country: Vietnam
Designer: Phan Khanh Trang
School: Hue College of Art

In the past, people in Vietnam often used banana leaves to wrap things. Banana leaves and furoshiki are both evocative of the simpler ways of life that were common in days gone by. The dragonfly has long been popular in Japan and Vietnam as a traditional design symbolic of natural beauty. This design, which incorporates a banana leaf and a dragonfly, expresses the close cultural relationship between daily life in Japan and Vietnam.

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<Prize for Excellence>

Title: Cross Cultural Design
Country: Singapore
Designer: Yeo Hai Tian Leon
School: Nanyang Polytechnic

This design is based on the concept of cross-cultural interaction between Japan and Singapore. The soft violet background emphasizes traditional colors. A kiji (Japanese Pheasant), Japan’s national bird and a species endemic to Japan, is at the center of the design, surrounded by orchids, the national flower of Singapore. The design expresses a fusion between Singapore and Japan.

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Title: Great Pacific Garbage Fish
Country: United States
Designer: Michelle Ray
School: Tyler School of Art

The plastic bottles stand for the fish that swim in the Pacific Ocean between the United States and Japan. The fish are colored by the trash that human beings discard into the ocean, depicting the plight of marine life today, forced to exist in an unnatural environment brought about by the slow ruin of the Pacific Ocean habitat.

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Title: Nature
Country: Canada
Designer: Rin Shimizu
School: York University

This design blends Hokusai’s “Red Fuji” with maple leaves as an image of the links between Japan and Canada. Sashiko and quilt stitching was used to incorporate cherry blossom petals into the fabric, expressing a fusion between the two countries.


Two designs
Material: Cotton
Size: 70㎝×70㎝

Retail Price:

Price at JFIC shop: ¥1,400
(tax included)

Japan Foundation Original Furoshiki Now on Sale

*A part of the proceeds of this product will be used for the cultural exchange programs conducted by the Japan Foundation.

Special thanks to:


Communication Center
TEL:03-5369-6075 FAX:03-5369-6044


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