Sori Yanagi, Friend Of Your Home


Sori Yanagi, long considered the Charles and Ray Eames of Japan, has designed so much flatware, mixing bowls, dishes, cutlery, kitchen tools, pots, pans, plates, that you are able to stock several kitchens. If you can get the stuff. MoMa, bless its heart, does its usual thing of giving us a few bits (5 pieces of flatware). You can get more of the flatware at Unicahome, for the completists among us (like me!) who need that shellfish fork to complete their collection.

What's less readily available in the USA and Europe are the plates. I had the honor of being received by Mr. Yanagi in 2004 at his studio, and after showing me his prototypes for the latest pots and pans, and his to-kill-for book collection, he showed me the shop upstairs. There were half a dozen lines of plates, some of handmade/handpainted ceramic, others more modern. Our favorites were the rounded square black and white plates (pictured above in the lower left), if only because they were microwave safe and had matching tea cups, saucers, and every shape of plate one could imagine. At the time the only way to acquire these was to purchase them at the store and have our hotel ship them back to the USA; we're happy to say that these days you can get them from the Japanese online store designshop, who will arrange shipping overseas via major shippers. I am also partial to the Marumon series (and the companion Musubimon series), also pictured above at lower right. Designshop has this and several other pieces, including the iconic bird-shaped soy sauce pitcher (pictured above left).


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