This Japanese vintage gold tone mixed metal kanzashi dates to the 19th century per the seller from Japan, to the Edo period from new information we have, see below reference. Kanzashi have been officially designated as a traditional Japanese handcraft since 1982. He also said, "Hirauchi Kanashi, it is the most simplest shape without decoration, and has only an earspoon. The Kanzashi leg is one or two sticks. The work is very simple as seen by the photo. Its main material is silver, or silver plate on the other metals." See rest below. It is a very nice and well made piece. It has a scoop spoon at the end which is called the earspoon. The seller said it was gold plated silver, and indeed it turned blue with the silver Puritest which is one of the colors for lower count silver on the testing, probably about 400- green results are 500. He re-iterated that it is silver, I am not totally familiar with the Japanese process of coating to know if they would use gold vermeil on silver which messes up the testing results to a lover result. The end is decorated with a bouquet of flowers including lilies and chrysanthemums. The problem is with these pieces is it is so difficult to capture the detail, the pictures do not do them justice, they are much nicer in person. this is made by a metal artist, not a machine. It is in very good condition and has not been refinished, is not tarnished. and has no damages. The ends are just a little bent, but that is going to happen with years of use on some of these. See more information below and our other kanzashi, different types- with more to come including some Sharon is repairing or recreating with old Japanese kanzashi and Japanese beads.
They are very nice old kanzashi hair pieces dating to the Edo period, we are not sure if 18th or 19th century. Please note the 10/12/15 episode of Mark of Beauty on the NHK channel from Japan for historical dating information. Another seller from Japan shared the following, and I have compiled to share with you. Please see other information and history from WIki below, and our other kanzashi and hair ornaments with more to come.
See our many other kanzashi and kogai hair pins of all materials in our store!
Length: 140 mm long or 5.5 "
Ornament: 21mm round and 3mm thick
Weight: 9 grams
Another seller from Japan shared the following, and I have compiled to share with you. Please also see other information and history from WIki below, and our other kanzashi and hair ornaments with more to come.
About the metal materials used for Kanzashi The main metal usually was silver and used very frequently, sometimes copper and iron, and brass was also the popular material. When the Kanzashi was made of brass, silver was sometimes plated on the metal in order to add beauty, or high quality. Gold itself might be used for the special ordered Kanzashi. Silver made Kanzashi was often gold plated fully or partially on the surface and it weighs heavier when compared to brass made ones. Silver and silver alloy products are now at present seen oxidized but if polished the original luster is revived. A large numbers of Kanzashi by various kinds of designs were produced especially after the middle era of Edo period and was continued to Meiji and Taisho eras (1850 ~ 1920), that means Kanzashi was a kind of mass production items. It was usual way not to mark the material name such as (silver or gold) except the special occasion for the high valued Kanzashi .
History of the Kanzashi 簪
of Note, there was a lot of gold plated Kanzashi exactly like this one shown as an example on Wiki.
Kanzashi were first used in Japan during the Jōmon period. During that time, a single thin rod or stick was considered to have mystical powers which could ward off evil spirits, so people would wear them in their hair. This is also when some of the first predecessors of the modern Japanese hair comb began to appear. During the Nara period, a variety of Chinese cultural aspects and items were brought to Japan, including zan (written with the same Chinese character as kanzashi) and other hair ornaments. During the Heian period, the traditional style of putting hair up was changed to wearing it long, tied back low. It was at this time that kanzashi began to be used as a general term for any hair ornament, including combs and hairpins.
During the Azuchi-Momoyama period, the hairstyles changed from the taregami 垂髪, or long straight hair, to the wider variety of "Japanese hair" 日本髪 Nihongami) which make more use of hair ornaments. Kanzashi came into wide use during the Edo period, when hairstyles became larger and more complicated, using a larger number of ornaments. Artisans began to produce more finely crafted products, including some hair ornaments that could be used as defensive weapons. During the latter part of the Edo period, the craftsmanship of kanzashi reached a high point, with many styles and designs being created (see Types of kanzashi, below).
Tsumami kanzashi has been officially designated as a traditional Japanese handcraft in the Tokyo region since 1982. Traditionally trained professional artisans typically undergo five to ten years of apprenticeship; from 2002 to 2010, their estimated number in the country decreased from fifteen to five However, the petal-folding technique has become a popular hobby, due to instructional books, kits, and lessons from sources such as the Tsumami Kanzashi Museum in Shinjuku. Some students have bypassed the traditional apprenticeship system to establish themselves as independent professional artisans of tsumami kanzashi in Japan. Currently, the use of kanzashi has declined significantly in favor of more Western hairstyles. The most common use of kanzashi now is in Shinto weddings and use by maiko (apprentice geisha).
Nowadays, kanzashi are most often worn by brides; by professional kimono wearers such as geisha, tayū and yujo; or by adepts in Japanese tea ceremony and ikebana. However, there is currently a revival among young Japanese women who wish to add an elegant touch to their business suit. (From and See Wikipedia for more about the different types)
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