In Japan folk toys are enjoyed by all classes of people who brought them home for their children. All these imaginative toys were conceived and made by woodworkers, many of whom were given the title and status of “Living Treasures” by the Japanese government. There is so much that is protective and auspicious in the traditional themes of Japanese folk art, and only through toys is there room for the direct expression of humor.
Japanese interactive toys were often made at home of simple materials, or in the case of upper classes, in small quantities by skilled craftsmen, (Kiji-shi). Japanese toys span an unparalleled gamut—from a centuries-long practice of traditional Kokeshi doll making to whimsical Kokeshi based folk toys.