The first head of the company, Kasuke, worked for Iseya Sanzaemon in the capital of Kyoto and founded Kyoto Shimazu in 1833. Later, he became the official purveyor of the Imperial Household and inherited the skills of a master craftsman and the honor of a master artisan.
History of Kyoto Shimazu
1928Nobutsugu Shinji, the fifth-generation head of the company, received the honor of being appointed as the purveyor of ritual utensils on the occasion of Emperor Showa’s Enthronement Ceremony. It was held at the Kyoto Imperial Palace in 1928, and it is said that the ritual utensils were delivered in ceremonial attire to the Kyoto Imperial Palace, managed by the Imperial Household Agency.
1950We handle tea ceremony utensils, engagement gifts, and New Year’s decorations, which we inherited from the family business, as well as items related to seasonal festivals, such as Hina Dolls and Boys’ May Festival Dolls, which are representative of Kyoto Shimazu today.
1964Reorganized as a corporation (stock company).
1976Donation of Hina Dolls and Boys’ May Festival Dolls to 10 nursing homes and other facilities through the Kobe Shimbun Welfare Organization marks the beginning of our domestic donation activities.
1985Donation of Hina dolls to the Boston Children’s Museum in Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.A., marks the start of overseas donation activities.
1991Donated “Yosyun” Hina Dolls to President Mikhail Gorbachev of the Soviet Union (present-day Russia). (Donated through then Prime Minister Toshiki Kaifu)
1997Established New York Shimazu Co.,Ltd. in the U.S. (active until June 2002)
2024We will continue to create handmade “Yusoku” Kyoto products that have inherited the honorable spirit and techniques of the imperial purveyor from Kasuke, the first generation of the Shimazu family, and pass on this spirit of celebration to the next generations.