Vintage Japanese Sakunami Wooden Fukuguruma (Fortune Car) Toy | Rare Sakunami Family Kiji Omocha


Dimensions: 3-3/4”h x 5-1/2”w x 3-3/4”d

One saw this type of original Kokeshi-inspired vintage Japanese wooden toy made by a family member named Hiraga, Kenichi, a Sakunami carver who specializes in this subject matter. This family of creators hails from Sakunami Onsen in Miyagi Prefecture and is one of the older Kokeshi firms as they date to the early Meiji period (1896-1912). The kiji-shi (woodworkers), divided their time between farming and wood-craft when in the winter time the land was less productive.

This style of toy is made from recycled wood and painted in a veritable rainbow of colors from the usual red and black to green, yellow, and even blue and purple as seen in this toy, and all made to attract younger children in the 1950s. The sides of the toy incorporate Rokoru mono stripes running around both wheels of the cart. The figure's body shows a chrysanthemum (Kiku) blossom which dominates the body. Its head like all the Skunami Kokeshi has the typical double eyelids and cat-shaped nose with side hair fringes black hair and bangs. An abstracted chrysanthemum is also incorporated on top of the head as decoration. The bar wooden bar that connects the figure to the two wheels is striped in red. This toy makes a wonderful clanking sound as the figure moves freely back and forth between both sides of the Fortune Car. The entire piece possesses the warm-heartedness of being a true treasure of a particular time in history. The figure is made of Mazuki, which is a very pale, fine, white-grained variety of dogwood, which is native to the area. It has the artist's script signature on the bottom of the doll.

See our Vintage Japanese Toy Section: as well as 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.