Thursday, January 5, 2012

Joji Cranes

It's been quite a while since I visited one of my favourite boutiques tucked away in a small arcade, I have little motivation to leave the house these days but as soon as I do get some I'll be heading on over to get myself some lovely quirky jewellery that's relatively cheap too! They have on say some of these lovely paper Crane necklaces hanging on silver chains from Joji.

These lovely cranes are handmade with love and care by Joji in Melbourne using (Yuzen) paper, the miniature cranes are neatly folded and tucked with precision that would put a plastic surgeon to shame, using traditional Japanese techniques, the cranes are then dipped in resin and strung along Sterling silver chains. They are available in two sizes, shorter chains for smaller cranes and the big beasties are on longer necklaces.

The crane is 7cm (2.75 Inches) from wing tip to wing tip, this makes the broach approximately 3.5cm (1.37 Inches) high and 3.5cm wide (perfect for a statement on your lapel or favourite shirt).

Each of these lovely cranes is unique and individual with the effect of patterned paper being different for each due to the folding and the pieces used, the process of preserving each of these Joji origami pieces is also unexpected, they prefer to cover their pieces in resin rather than lacquer. Lacquer is also used to secure the brooch pins on the backs of their crane brooches as seen on their Etsy store here. Unlike lacquer, resin is very durable and can be worn without fear of wear and tear ruining them and the coating can thwart off sweat, they can even be worn regularly by children though it is not advised to wear it in the shower, lake, pool or ocean. While they are sealed with resin, there is the possibility of it still seeping through.

The names Chiyogami and Yuzen are now used interchangeably to describe beautiful traditional Japanese papers. Yuzen papers originate from the Kyoto textile industry and have elaborate gold details in their patterns while the Chiyogami papers (translated to mean 'thousand generations paper') originate in the Edo period of Japanese history (1603-1868) and are wood-block printed papers. Each piece of paper is made from kozo and sulphate and has a silk-screened base layer with the pattern hand-printed above in multiple layers. Each colour visible on the paper is a separate layer of printing and drying which makes these beautiful papers very labour intensive.


  1. Thanks for the wonderful write-up we are glad you like our products! We definitely agree that Lenko is a boutique worth checking out in the CBD with so many quirky items to choose from in such a beautiful location.

    1. Ah! Thank you so much for your kind words and please keep up the good work :)