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The popularity of masking tape has been growing in Japan because of its infinite way to use. While it was originally invented in the United States and was used as industrial products for a long time even after it was imported to Japan, a Japanese company reinvented it as a decorative item giving you a totally different idea. So how can it be used as a decorative item?
It can decorate a gift or letter to your loved ones, be wrapped around your stationery, highlight an important event on your schedule book, be a name tag of your kitchen item, and much more. When you hear masking tape, you may think of it with one color, but you will find so many different kinds of designs and colors on masking tape in Japan, and that is the most attractive point about Japanese masking tape.
As some of you may know masking tape as Washi tape, Washi tape is a masking tape made of Japanese paper, “Washi”. Washi tape was first made by a Japanese company as a wrapping paper of the gunpowder after masking tape was imported to Japan. Since it was very useful, it became worldwide. There are many Washi tapes in Japan, but it's not that all Japanese masking tape is made of Washi and it is just called "masking tape" in Japan.
If you like masking tape, you can’t miss “mt” that is the original and one of the most famous masking tape brands in Japan.
"MT is the original brand of washi paper masking tape, created by the 100-year-old company Kamoi Kakoshi and produced in Japan. In 2006, the company received an email from 3 women in Tokyo who were using their industrial tapes in beautiful craft projects. Amazed by this surprising and wonderful usage, Kamoi Kakoshi invited the women to visit their factory. This visit inspired the development of an entirely new and original category of tape: MT brand washi tape, colorful tape which is easy to tear by hand and reposition on nearly any surface.from MT official website
MT washi masking tape is now sold throughout the world in hundreds of colors and patterns.
MT has become a part of daily life, adding a little color everywhere."
Since Kamoi Kakoshi is located in Kurashiki in Okayama Prefecture, Kurashiki is now known as the birthplace of masking tape in Japan besides an Important Traditional Structures Conservation Area. There are several quaint local shops specialized in masking tape surrounded by traditional streets and buildings.
Japan Deluxe Tours’ Quilt Tours will visit this charming merchant district of Kurashiki. Why not get some cute and colorful Japanese-style masking tape that can only be gotten in Kurashiki while you are there? You will surely want to collect them once you see those masking tapes in Japan.
Here are some local shops Japan Deluxe Tours recommend you to visit:
TANEx612 FACTORY is one of the most popular and unique masking tape stores in Kurashiki. The owner opened this store to let people know the great merchandise from Kurashiki. A MINI cooper, which is the trademark of this store, will welcome you as you walk into the store, and you will see the shelf filled with various masking tapes which are made by the owner. A workshop - Decorating the box with “mt” masking tapes is available at the site.
Located in the Kurashiki Bikan Chiku area (Kurashiki Bikan Historical Quarter), Nyochikudo has over 500 kinds of masking tapes including “mt” and unique stationery. Not only that, they offer a free masking tape experience for you. You can decorate a paper bag with colorful masking tape the way you would like to do. Make the-only-one-paper bag in the world.
Bikan Chiku - Town of Storehouses
The Birthplace of Japanese Denim
Visit local kimono shops and enjoy kimono offcuts shopping
The first and sole quilt museum established by Mutsuko Yawatagaki
Quilting specialist Mutsuko Yawatagaki's special work shop
Traditional Japanese confection known for brilliant colors and designs to pair with the tea ceremony
Traditional Japanese Paper store, established in 1653 in the Nihombashi area of Tokyo
Shibori is the method of dyeing cloths.