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What Is Kanzashi? How To Make Kanzashi Flowers?

Hey there, craft enthusiasts! Ever heard of Kanzashi? If you’re shaking your head, get ready for a treat – and if you’re nodding along, then you know you’re in for some fun. Kanzashi is an ancient Japanese art form that has been jazzing up hairdos since before your great-great-great grandma was in a cradle! It is crafting delicate, gorgeous flowers that you can use to pimp up nearly anything: your hair, your outfits, your home – heck, even your cat (if they’re into that kind of thing!).

So, ready to dive into this world of fancy fabric flowers? Keep scrolling, because we’re about to spill the tea on Kanzashi!

Feature how to make kanzashi flowers

What is Kanzashi

Originating in the Jōmon period (14,000–300 BC), Kanzashi was the hottest trend in Japan before trends were even a thing! These artistic hair ornaments, which started as simple hairpins, evolved through time like your favorite band’s music. Different eras saw different styles – from the unassuming sticks of yore to elaborate floral designs during the Edo period (1603-1868). Talk about keeping up with the times!

But Kanzashi is way more than just fancy hair bling. Each piece is a symbol and a whisper of the culture that crafted it. Kanzashi pieces were often made from tortoiseshell or silk, and each design had a special meaning tied to the season or an upcoming festival. Kinda like how your favorite baseball cap might say, “I’m a fan,” a Kanzashi says, “Spring has sprung,” or “Let’s celebrate Tanabata.”

Kanzashi in different seasons, source: emuse
Kanzashi in different seasons, source: emuse

Materials Needed for Making Kanzashi Flowers

Just as a master chef needs ingredients before they cook up a storm, you’ll need your craft supplies to blossom into a Kanzashi artist. So, let’s gather your toolkit. No magical artifacts required, we promise!

  1. Fabric: First things first, you’re going to need a piece of fabric in your favorite color. Polka-dots, neon green, classic black – you do you!
  2. Liquid Glue: Next up is good old-fashioned glue. It’s the magic potion that binds your Kanzashi creation together.
  3. Hair Pin Base: This is the ‘pizza dough’ of your Kanzashi ‘pizza.’ AKA the foundation where your fabric flowers will find their forever home.
  4. Tweezers: Tweezers will be your best friend when handling and placing those tiny petals.
  5. Scissors: Sharp and ready, these are your trusty sidekick for cutting your fabric into perfect squares.
  6. Small Pearls: These little gems are the proverbial icing on your Kanzashi cake. You can also replace them with tiny artificial flower stamen.

There you have it – your Kanzashi crafting kit. Assemble these items, and you’re all set to dive into the colorful and exciting world of Kanzashi flowers.

Steps to DIY Slim Kanzashi Flowers

Ready to rock and roll with your own Kanzashi flowers? Perfect! Let’s dive into the DIY steps that’ll transform your fabric squares into an eye-catching piece of art.

Cut out eight square pieces of fabric and pinch them into the shape of slim petals.

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Now, stick your well-crafted petals symmetrically onto a base (I used a brooch base here to show the petals better). Remember, balance is key – think of it like arranging your toppings on a pizza!

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For the final touch, glue some pearls (or a flower bud accessory) in the center.

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If you like more flowers glooming on your hair, repeat the above steps, and you will get a personalized Kanzashi!

Steps to DIY Round Kanzashi Flowers

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And there you have it, folks! You’re now a bona fide Kanzashi artist, turning fabric squares into two types of Kanzashi flowers like a pro. Ready to give it a whirl? We can’t wait to see what you create!

The Stories Behind Kanzashi Flowers

Now that you’ve gotten your hands crafty and learned the step-by-step process of creating Kanzashi flowers. Let’s add a new layer to your DIY skill. What if we told you that each Kanzashi flower you’ve crafted or are planning to craft carries a unique story? Yes, you heard it right!

In the mesmerizing world of Kanzashi flowers, each bloom represents not only an artistic achievement but also a distinctive symbolism. Let us spotlight some popular Kanzashi flowers and their fascinating tales.

A complete kanzashi flower

Sakura (Cherry Blossom): The superstar during springtime in Japan, the Sakura is a symbol of the transient beauty of spring. By creating a Sakura Kanzashi bloom, you’re capturing a moment of fleeting beauty that won’t ever fade. It’s perfect for spring celebrations or to add a touch of poetic charm to your ensemble.

Kiku (Chrysanthemum): Representing longevity and rejuvenation, Kiku is a staple during autumn festivities in Japan. When you craft a Kiku Kanzashi, it’s as though you’re declaring that your style is timeless and ever-evolving!

Botan (Peony): Revered as the king of flowers in Japan, the Peony symbolizes wealth and nobility. Sporting a Botan Kanzashi? That’s akin to proclaiming yourself the royalty of the crafting realm.

Tsubaki (Camellia): Symbolic of eternal love and a promising future, Tsubaki can bring a tender touch to your Kanzashi flower creation. It’s the perfect Kanzashi to gift to a loved one.

Ume (Plum Blossom): An emblem of resilience and fortitude, the Ume blooms while the snow is still on the ground. Wearing an Ume Kanzashi declares you’re not just a crafter, but a warrior braving the storms of life.

Kanzashi flowers carry narratives, symbolize rich cultural meanings, and add depth to the crafting experience. So, as you embark on this creative journey, remember that each petal you fold brings you closer to a symbol of Japanese tales.

Too Difficult? Kanzashi at Amazon and Etsy

Now, if you’ve followed us this far, taken a gander at the list of materials and the DIY steps, and you’re thinking, “Yikes, this seems like rocket science,” or “Who has the time for this? I barely have time to binge my favorite shows!” – don’t worry, we’ve got you covered!

We understand that not everyone has the time or the extra pair of hands to fold the fabric into delicate petals. That’s why the internet gods created places like Amazon and Etsy. They’re chock full of Kanzashi wonders, ready-made and waiting to be shipped right to your doorstep!

Here is a collection of our recommended delicate Kanzashi you wouldn’t want to miss:

FINGER LOVE Womens Girls Japanese Hair Pin
Wisteria hair clip
Amosfun Japanese Hairpin
Minkissy Flower Hair Clips
Hydrangea Purple Blue Flowers Hair Pin

Final Words

And just like that, dear friends, we’ve reached the end of our vibrant journey. We’ve folded, we’ve glued, we’ve even virtually shopped together – and boy, hasn’t it been a hoot?

Whether you’re now a bona fide Kanzashi crafter ready to conquer the world, or you’re eagerly awaiting the postman to deliver your beautiful new Kanzashi accessories, remember this: Kanzashi is more than just an art or a fashion statement. It’s a celebration of tradition and creativity.

In the hectic shuffle of daily life, don’t forget to stop and admire the Kanzashi flower. Remember the stories they tell, the hands that crafted them, and the cultural heritage they represent.

Remember, in the grand tapestry of life, we’re all just looking for those moments of beauty to pin to our hearts – and hey, why not pin them with a Kanzashi?

Keep it crafty, keep it stylish, and keep it uniquely you.

If you want to learn more about Japanese fashion, welcome to our “Japanese Fashion” channel. Feel free to leave a comment if you have any questions or ideas~ We are always here to exchange brilliant thoughts!

Have a good day

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