Warazaiku is an intricate craft made of straw that has been part of Japan's history since it was first documented in 712. This traditional art form is closely tied to agriculture and the Shinto religion and is created by farmers using the leftover straw from the rice harvest.

The process of making warazaiku involves coiling straw between the palms of the artisans' hands while offering prayers for good fortune. The Takubo studio, led by the Kai family, is located in a village near Takachiho in the Miyazaki prefecture, an ancient and sacred location well-known for Japanese myths. Here, they delicately hand-weave sacred straw amulets.

Creating warazaiku at Takubo is a labor-intensive process that spans an entire year. It begins with planting rice seeds, followed by a year of cultivation in various climates and weather conditions. After the rice is harvested, it is dried to produce straw, which is then woven into the final product. Each shape and knot in the warazaiku carries a unique story, symbolizing different aspects of life and spirituality.

For over 60 years and three generations, the Kai family has dedicated itself exclusively to producing these intricate straw crafts, preserving the traditional techniques and spiritual significance of warazaiku.