Tokyo’s kitschy English signs, like the ones I linked to yesterday, are purely for the consumption of the young wannabe urbanite.
The signage in smaller towns, particularly in the well preserved old towns, adhere to the spare, subtle norms of Japanese aesthetic. Elegant and beautiful, quite like the artful plating of their food or the simplicity of their gardens.
I found these creative signs enchanting. The last one (in the header gallery) outside a restaurant had a mechanised figure holding a menu card.
Sabi or the appeal of natural patina and aging, is an integral component of Japanese design, and is evident in these beautifully textured signboards.
Until next time…..happy travels, no matter where life takes you!
98 thoughts on “Some Tasteful Japanese Aesthetic….”
Sabi or the appeal of natural patina and aging, is an integral component of Japanese design… – we call it “shabby chic” = like all the furnitures in our apartment 🙂
Your furniture must look lovely Frizz 😀
ashamed to present it to a professional designer – but let me try nevertheless, Madhu:
P.S.: thank you for following on twitter!
I adore this post. I lived in the Tokyo area for 3 years back in the 1990s and I still enjoy seeing things and places from Japan.
Pleasure to see you here Lydia! Delighted that you enjoyed this post. Thank you for the reblog.
You are very welcome, Madhu. Japanese culture is something that I find very appealing. Your post fit perfectly with my blog, Mysteries of the Orient. Thank you for such a wonderful post.
I’ll have to add Japan to my bucket list; in the meantime, shared this on Pinterest!
Thank you Marcia. Hope you do visit someday. Japan far exceeded my expectations.
And then there is Wabi Sabi. Love your photos!
Thanks Angeline. Isn’t the idea of finding beauty in imperfection wonderful?
Japan is such a graceful country – and so delicate … even the signs – maybe not in Tokyo with all their neon lights *smile. Love you choice for the challenge.
I loved the neons too! Had never seen as many together as in Shunjuku 🙂 Thanks Viveka.
Thank you Gilly 🙂
They do have a unique way to communicate, huh! Now I want to visit Japan.
Sounds cliched to say you will love it, but you will 😀
I’m sorry, Madhu, but what the buttery fellow in the last picture is selling is as much a mystery to me as the beautiful old signboards with their patina and graceful symbols. Is it late, or have I turned into a cranky old pumpkin? 🙂
Oh you are far too lovely to turn into a cranky old pumpkin Meredith 😀 Perhaps I should have captioned that shot better. That last sign was on the roof of a donut shop!
Beautiful and ellegant 🙂
Thought so too Paula, even if I couldn’t read a word 🙂
Some of the japanese signs remind me (excluding letters) in a way a bit about signs from the austrian and swiss Alps – very well captured… 🙂
They do! in fact the Ogimachi villages that I chronicled earlier, could have been transported straight from the Swiss Alps!
LOVE the Donut Shop : )
Isn’t he cute? 🙂
They were all good but he was unique and happy!
Madhu, I love the Japanese lettering and I especially love that cat greeting those who might walk into the establishment.
Me too Judy. I would have brought him home if he hadn’t weighed a ton 🙂
Japanese seem to make everything elegantly, even signs. Wonderful post!
They really do! Thanks Amy.
Love the shops and signs Madhu! Must be quite a treat to walk around there. 🙂
Great selection and lovely shots. Thanks for sharing. 🙂 *hugs*
Thank you Sonel 🙂
Such an intriguing culture, Madhu. I love the little coolie hat sign. I’m sure we could find a space for that in our garden. 🙂
Thought that one was very creative too Jo 🙂
They look almost like art installations!
Don’t they? The graceful script adds to the appeal in my opinion.
interesting and cool 🙂
Thanks Joshi 😉
Nice share 🙂
Thank you Amira.
Love Japanese elegant understatement too!
Thank you Ashu 🙂
I love sabi! Those are some beautiful weathered signs, Madhu.
Aren’t they just? I couldn’t stop clicking 🙂
I love how much I learn from reading your blog.
Aww, that’s a sweet thing to say TBM….thank you so much 🙂
I love your header, Madhu. Beautiful signs you’ve shared. I feel I’ve really missed out, never having visited japan. 🙂
Thank you Sylvia. Hope you do get to visit Japan sometime.
Very interesting signs indeed.
Thank you Sartenada 🙂
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Thank you Judi. They are from the old towns of Kyoto and Takayama in Japan.
Nice photos! What type of camera do you use?
Thank you! I use a Nikon entry level DSLR
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There’s a quiet elegance in the simplicity of the Japanese decor. A less is more attitude or so it seems. Great photo’s … I like them all.
Thank you so much Isadora. I am increasingly drawn to ‘less is more’ in every aspect of life 🙂
Japan is a beautiful country country where people are proud of who they are,this makes all the difference…I wish we all learn from them..
beautiful shots Madhu
Do you see that happening here anytime soon Soma? Thank you for the compliment 🙂
ciao! great shots and indeed a reflection of the culture.
Thank you tbd, appreciate the visit and comment 🙂
Beauty in unexpected places – even in signs 🙂
Yes! I love how they put in so much effort to make the mundane look beautiful 🙂
These are quite charming! I sure enjoyed Japan.
They sure take pride in a lot of their presentations and displays, including signs.
True. An artistic Bento box is proof enough 🙂 Thank you Fergie.
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Honoured and touched by your gesture Naresh! Thank you so much. I apologise for the late response.
No problem 🙂 Cheers!!!
I like those weathered signs and how they blend with their environment.
Arent they lovely? I love weathered wood even in interiors. Thanks for taking the tie to read Imelda. I know how busy you have been 🙂
The Japanese are always able to find more peculiar ways to everything. 🙂 Some are cute, some are just too bizarre. But we do love them, don’t we?
Oh yes we do Bama 🙂 Even their bizarre designs are somehow appealing!
Would love to visit little old villages!! One day maybe!!
Soon I hope Lisa. My tagline on Facebook reads: “To those that can dream, there is no such place as faraway” 🙂
Hello! Have a good week!
You too Marco 🙂
Hello Madhu. I’m Nick.
I would like to publish a sponsored post (with one link) on your great blog – https://theurgetowander.com/. Could you please give me the price for the placement of it?
Also i would like to show you some examples of my work:
Thank you and I look forward to your reply.
Have a nice day.
Appreciate the offer Nick. I don’t think WordPress.com allows advertising or sponsored links. Shall keep this in mind if/when I decide to self host my blog. Thank you so much 🙂
Missing you, Madhu. Hope all’s well and you’re travelling somewhere wonderful. 🙂
I wish Jo! Have been bogged down by a whole load of personal issues. Trying to arrive at a balance. Appreciate the concern my friend 🙂
Glad to hear from you. You’re missed. Take good care. Balance is SO not easy to find. 🙂
Such lovely photos and the beautiful narration does full justice to Japan’s rich culture.
Many thanks Madhu
Thank YOU for reading Dilip 🙂
Beautiful pictures! 🙂
Thanks Arindam 🙂
These are all so cute! 😀
Aren’t they? Thank you for stopping by Srishti 🙂