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Echizen Blue Stone – Rare Stones Never to be Excavated Again

Update date and time: 2022/10/05(Wed)

Have you ever heard of the jewels of Fukui, Shakudani stone? 

It is said that Emperor Tsugitai discovered this mysterious blue stone 1,500 years ago, and has been handed down in Fukui since ancient times.

The Shakudani stone is also called “Echizen bluestone,” because it turns blue when wetted with water.

 

 

The stones were excavated in the Asuwa area. It is said that the name “Shakudani stone” was given to the stone, because of its superior quality in the Shakudani district.

It is also known as “blue stone” because it turns deep blue when wetted with water, and light blue and fine-grained stones are considered to be of high quality.

It is said that this precious stone will never be excavated again. 

 

 

The sceptered stones have been handed down for 1,500 years and are still used in our daily lives as paving stones and curbstones, but as time passed by, they were being forgotten by the people.

We spoke with “Fukui Blue Co., Ltd.”, a company that collects sceptered stones from old houses in Fukui Prefecture and develops brands mainly as tableware, with the hope of preserving the unique stone cultures of Fukui.

 

◆Table of Contents

  1. Discovering the charms of “Fukui Blue, Shakudani stone!”
  2. “Fukui Blue” retail store and online store

 

 

1. Discovering the charms of “Fukui Blue, Shakudani stone”!

 

 

The company is located in Tahara, Fukui City.

There were a variety of handmade vessels made of Shakudani stone in the office.

 

 

Pebbles of various colors are scattered on a blue background, further enhancing the beauty of the blue material.

It is so light, smooth and gentle to the touch that it is hard to believe that it is made of stone. It also has a friendliness that is unique to Japanese tableware.

Another charm is the mysterious color change when wetted with water.

 

 

A beautiful light blue Echizen lacquerware.

 

 

The bowl and chopstick rest are decorated with gold leaf.

The gold leaf enhances the natural patterns of the stone. It brings out the Japaneseness to the lacquerware.

 

 

The warihada (broken surface), which is made of stone with a rugged texture, is also becoming popular.

They feel smooth against the lips and have excellent permeability, moisture retention, and heat retention.

 

 

This is an elaborate miniature (1/15 scale) of the Karamon Gate!

The artist felt a deep connection with the fact that many stone products made of Shakudani stone were excavated from the ruins of the Ichijodani Asakura clan, a National Special Historic Site.

The Shakudani stone is easy to work with and can be elaborately revived down to the smallest detail.

It can also be made thin, which is why it is used as the material of the prefectural government’s “Certificate of Commendation.”

 

 

You can experience making original coasters using the thin Shakudani stones at Fukui Blue Co., Ltd..

 

 

It takes about one and a half hours to make the coaster, and you can take it home with you on the same day.

Try drawing a good memory of Fukui on the coaster with your family?

Click here to make a reservation.

 

President Kondo with his longtime favorite Fukui Blue Yunomi (teacup).

 

Mikio Kondo     President and Representative Director of Fukui Blue Co., Ltd..

The beauty of this stone is not limited to Fukui, but now has fans all over the world. It is a very rare and valuable stone, so I want everyone to understand the value of the Shakudani stone and use it with care.

I believe that the development of Fukui Blue is my life’s purpose and mission. I am putting my efforts into further promotion and development of new products in order to pass on this stone to future generations!

 

The office was also decorated with miniatures of Kitamae-bune, a ship closely related to the Shakudani stone. It is exciting to see what new ideas they come up with in the future!

 

2. “Fukui Blue” retail store and online store

 

 

In Fukui Prefecture, you can find products of Fukui Blue in stores such as Seibu Fukui, Happiring, etc..

You can also purchase the products at the Fukui City Sightseeing Products Museum “Fukufuku Kan” which is on the second floor of Happiring located in front of Fukui Station.

For those living outside of Fukui Prefecture, you can buy products of Fukui Blue at the Fukui Antenna Shop in Minami Aoyama, Tokyo, and at showrooms in Osaka and Nagoya.

 

 

There are about thirty kinds of products displayed and sold at the Fukui City Sightseeing Products Museum “Fukufuku Kan.”

The delicate beauty of the products is eye-catching.

The most popular product is the couple’s teacups. They are popular for its gentle and smooth texture, and are chosen not only for personal use but also as gifts for loved ones.

 

 

Drink some tasty sake from the traditional sake cups and also enjoy snacks prepared on the traditional Echizen lacquerware. This is a great way to appreciate the local sake!

 

 

You can also purchase various products such as teacups, soba plates, sake cups, beer cups, and other tableware on the Fukui Blue online store. They even sell wine stands, clocks, and other interior goods that will decorate your room beautifully.

Click here to visit the online store

*The online store is made-to-order. Since each product is handmade, delivery will take approximately one month.

The elegant and tasteful Shakudani stone is a beautiful jewel of Fukui.

You can feel the craftsmanship in the comfort and unparalleled beauty of this vessel when you hold it in your hand.

The more you use it, the more it will become your favorite vessel.

 

Management Company

Company Name: Fukui Blue Co., Ltd.

Address: Kondo Bldg. 2F, 2-20-17 Tahara, Fukui-shi, Fukui 910-0018

Phone number: 0776-23-2911

Official Website: https://www.fukuiblue.co.jp/

Online Store: https://fukuiblue.shop/collections/all

Stores selling and exhibiting the products

Tokyo: Fukui Minami-Aoyama 291 (Glasseria Aoyama, 5-4-41 Minami-Aoyama, Minato-ku)

Osaka: Fukui Prefecture Osaka Office Showroom (2-2-14 Kawaramachi, Chuo-ku, Osaka)

Nagoya: Tokyu Hands Nagoya (Takashimaya JR Nagoya 10F )

Fukui: Seibu Fukui (5F), Fukui Prefectural Government Co-op, Hokuden Sangyo Hyakusen Yokocho

Ichijodani Asakura Ruins Restoration Machinami Shop, Fukui City Sightseeing Products Museum “Fukufuku Kan”

Maruoka Castle: Ippitsu Keijo Jaya (tea house), Rest area: Minami-Echizen San-kairi (South Echizen)