• Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks Factory's photo

Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks Factory

Yanagawa City


The glow of a sparkler faintly and delicately lights up summer nights in Japan.

There are two types of fireworks in Japanese summer traditions. The loud explosions of fireworks that light up the night skies during summer festivals, and sparklers that you hold in your hand while enjoying a summer night with friends and family. Sparklers are the latter kind. The handheld fireworks that scatter delicate sparks are handmade, one sparkler at a time. Although in the past there were fireworks factories all over Japan, they are now few in number, and only three factories still produce sparklers. One of those is the Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks Factory in Miyama City, Fukuoka.

  • Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks Factory's photo
  • Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks Factory's photo
  • Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks Factory's photo
  • Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks Factory's photo
  • Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks Factory's photo
  • Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks Factory's photo
  • Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks Factory's photo

A fading flame of tradition that has been relit.

Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks Factory originally continued to manufacture toy fireworks for nearly 70 years. Toy fireworks are geared toward children, and include sparklers and other items that shoot sparks. However, about ten years ago, a sparkler factory in Fukuoka – the only one in the country – closed down. Because he didn’t want this tradition to die out, Ryota Tsutsui, the third generation owner decided to step in. He began his search for how to keep the tradition of sparklers alive in the modern age by training at the factory and learning the craftsmen’s techniques. The soft colors of the sparklers are all produced from vegetable dyes. The faint coloring of the sparklers are what makes them so beautiful.

  • Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks Factory's photo
  • Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks Factory's photo
  • Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks Factory's photo

The soft flame of the sparkler is aged like a fine wine.

Sparklers are aged. Most Japanese people have never heard of this. In reality, the sparks from a sparkler that has just been produced, and the sparks from a sparkler that has been stored for several years in a humidity-free environment are different. The aged sparklers produce a softer variety of sparks. With this knowledge, it is easy to understand why Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks wants to carefully store their fireworks. Next to their factory is a shop and gallery where fireworks are sold and sparkler workshops are held.

  • Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks Factory's photo
  • Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks Factory's photo
  • Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks Factory's photo
  • Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks Factory's photo
  • Tsutsui Tokimasa Toy Fireworks Factory's photo

For reference

Access

Fukuoka Airport is a 1 hour 50 minute flight from Haneda Airport.
Fukuoka Airport is a 2 hour flight from Narita Airport.
Fukuoka Airport is a 1 hour flight from Itami Airport.
Fukuoka Airport is a 1 hour flight from Kansai International Airport.
Fukuoka Airport is a 2 hour 15 minute flight from New Chitose Airport.
Fukuoka Airport is a 1 hour 30 minute flight from Chubu Centrair International Airport.
Fukuoka Airport is a 50 minute flight from Matsuyama Airport.
Fukuoka Airport is a 45 minute flight from Miyazaki Airport.
Fukuoka Airport is a 1 hour flight from Naha Airport.
From Fukuoka Airport, take the subway to Hakata Station (6 min).
From Hakata Station, transfer to the JR Kagoshima Line via Hainuzuka Station to Minamisetaka Station (1 hr).
The shop is 15 minutes from Minamisetaka Station by taxi.

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