top of page

Japanese Traditional Pattern - 日本文樣 Vol . 1

Updated: Aug 19, 2018

What is the Traditional Japanese Pattern(日本文樣)?

"No nation like the Japanese, love to take names for all kinds of things." Different shapes will be named according to the reminiscent of things, let people feel the cultural and knowledge of the Japanese Traditional Pattern.

The birth of the Japanese Traditional Pattern can be traced back to the birth of the text. The most well known of these take a single design and create patterns by placing the design systematically on fabric. They're mostly used for kimono, packaging, and other goods and sundries, but not only are they ultra cute -- they also have proper significance!

Japanese Traditional Pattern that bring good luck (1): types and shapes

Scales Pattern


When fews triangles are connected together, called "mountain shape"「山形文」. Several stacked ones are called "scales pattern"「鱗文」. When used alone, they are called "scales". In Japan, triangles have been regarded as scripts of the nature of witchcraft since ancient times, and therefore often appear on the imprint of exorcism and exorcism.


The pattern formed by the hexagon is regarded as the pattern of "The Tortoise Shell Pattern"「龜甲文」, which is called the tortoise shell. Tortoises have long been a symbol of longevity, so this pattern is also a prayer for long life. When the tortoiseshells are overlapped, it is called「子持龜甲文」, and「子持」means holding the hand of the child.


All stripe patterns are described in English by the word "stripe", but the Japanese name for the various stripe patterns: the wide parallel lines are like the burdocks. Called “Burdocks Stripes”「牛蒡縞文」; stripes that gradually thicken from the center to the sides, which look like a waterfall flowing, called "Two waterfall Stripes" 「兩瀧縞文」; add a strip next to a thick line Thin lines, like a pair of parent with children. Called "Parent-child Stripes” 「子持縞文」.

Left: " Burdocks Stripes " 「牛蒡縞文」 Right: " Parent-child Stripes "「子持縞文」


When the Sakura bloom, it is so smashed that the whole sky can be dyed into the color of Sakura, but the petals of the wind are not scattered in the stack, so the Japanese Sakura symbolize the spirit of the Japanese samurai who is not afraid of death.


Evergreen pine has the meaning of "longevity" in Japan. Since the Edo period, the Japanese have also begun to spread the saying that "three friends of the ages" - Pine, bamboo, plum. The symbol of auspicious pine, its branches, leaves, and stems have also become the source of artistic inspiration. In the tradition and handle, you can see the various images of " Pine " are very elegant.


Dandelion is similar shaping with a drum, and the sound of music has the power to pray for the gods to come and eliminate disasters. Therefore, the dandelion pattern is sometimes called "drum grass pattern"「鼓草文」.

The meaning of the Traditional Japanese Pattern(日本文樣) are mostly people's wishes for happiness, but the content is varied. The variety of these patterns are absolutely amazing. After sharing some shapes and plant patterns in this article, We will share more about other Traditional Japanese Patterns next time.




帶來好運的日本傳統文樣 (一):種類與形狀















《日本文樣圖解事典:帶來好運的日本傳統圖案480款》Author: 藤依里子, 水野惠司.

Welcome to Share our Article and subscribe our Updates .


bottom of page