Vintage Japanese Kokeshi Kendama Toy with Yajirou-kei Head by Mamoru, Fumio, Tsuta Family

Sale price$125.00
Free US Shipping

All our items ship free in the US

Dimension: 6-0”h

Offered is a very RARE vintage Kendama toy (“sword [and] ball") and represents a traditional Japanese skill toy. It consists of a handle (ken), a pair of cups (sarado), and a ball (tama) that are all connected by a string. It is said to strengthen hand-eye coordination, balance, and reflex and is known for the “tricks” that can be played as part of the competition.

What makes this more collectible and higher in price than the typical or contemporary Kendama is its graphic design conceived by the Yajirou Kokeshi family. The creators of this type of Kendama hail from the small farming village of Yajirou-machi near Kamasaki Onsen in Miyagi Prefecture, once a farming village between two, tall mountains. The kiji-shi (woodworkers), divided their time between farming and wood-craft, specifically Kokeshi dolls and Kokeshi toys. 

All the graphics on the body are in black and has a hand-painted collar with horizontal stripes encircling the body, as in the Rokoru moyo style (fine, varying widths of line-work) which also appear encircling the arms/cups for catching the ball. An additional interesting feature is the painted feature of its head with a face that has one lid and a cat or pick shaped nose.  The piece is made of white dogwood, (mazuki). The piece is singed by Sato on the lower portion of the base of the figure. This is a true collectors item for those who admire the Kendama toy.

See our e-book entitled: A Collector’s Guide: Traditional and Creative Kokeshi and Toys:

Condition: Excellent meaning that the piece retains its original craft/workmanship and functions as intended, showing a wonderful-developed patina and is void of damage, cracks, breakage, or repairs and meets all the standards of the collectible Vintage Traditional Kokeshi Toys.