Located in Ichikawamisato, the Yamanashi region boasts a 1,200-year history of paper making and is home to the Japanese paper maker Onao. Onao teamed up with industrial designer Naoto Fukasawa to create the SIWA series. Naoto Fukasawa is an industrial designer renowned for the "Wall mounted CD player" for Muji, which gained high praise domestically and overseas, and is now sold in 23 countries across the globe.
He recognised the special texture of Naoron - a hard-to-tear paper developed by Onao, and suggested designs for everyday goods using this unique material. The special texture of Naoron became apparent when the paper was creased. The name SIWA is both a play on the word ‘washi’ (traditional Japanese paper) and a word meaning, "crinkle" in Japanese. As with leather goods, these washi products are lovingly, individually crafted by dedicated artisans.
Ichikawamisato has an impressive paper making history, being the backbone of local industry and achieving the status as Japan's largest nationwide share of the Shoji paper. The Fuefuki River flows through the town of Ichikawamisato. This high-quality water is essential for paper making, and is the secret of the superior paper quality found in the SIWA range.