This collection presents more than 4,000 individual designs in the 900-year-old tradition of Japanese family crests. Through constant variation and invention over the centuries, this has become one of the richest graphic art traditions in the world.
Most of these motifs are circular, and they can all be fitted into a square. Within those limitations is a seemingly endless range of designs, beginning with the dozens and dozens of root motifs—rice plant, gingko, scallop, lightning, anchor, spool, raft, candle, scissors, fern, saki bottle, lotus blossom, mountain arrow, pine, wisteria, ship, rabbit, and scores of others. Practically every kind of plant, bird, animal, natural phenomenon, and manufactured object of Japanese culture was at one time or another included in a family crest. In addition, each of the root designs was treated to dozens of imaginative variations—they were reproduced bilaterally, in triangles, diamonds, five- and six-pointed stars, in spirals, were built up in series, made to overlap, combined with each other, and so on. Some of these are classic and recognizable designs, like the yin-yang, linked rings, and treasure knot. Many of the others have rarely been seen in the West.
Graphic artists, textile designers, pattern-makers, advertisers, and other commercial artists looking for an untapped source of novel, appealing designs will find a wealth of material here. Some of these motifs can be used to suggest an exotic flavor, and others are universal and can be used almost anywhere.
Dover unabridged publication of the catalog originally compiled around 1913 by the Matsuya Piece-Goods Store, Tokyo.
Almost no designs. Just tiny little circular patterns. You would think there would be some Dragon patterns and more variety.Published 28 days ago by Jeff Chart
Found the idea to get this book in an art class. We have a graphic design business that creates signage, logos, and advertisements. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Melissa Keeton
this book is really good for those looking for some Japanese inspiration either in textiles (like myself) or in fashion or for any artist type looking for Japanese inspiration. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Miyam Brumfield
it's all i expected and wanted. a great and artistically inspirational book of beautiful, and some surprising, japanese designs. Read morePublished 20 months ago by R. Barendse
This is an awesome collection of crests. I am planning to use these for some stenciling / painting projects. There are many choices, and the print quality is good.Published 20 months ago by Meike Hunter
I used to have this book 20 some years ago but loaned it away. Very happy to have one again. It's pages are so full of some of the most beautiful graphic designs. Really inspiring.Published 20 months ago by J moen
My family had this book when I was a wee lad and it influenced my interest in design greatly. I was so pleased to find it available to buy from Amazon and for SO CHEAP. Read morePublished on December 10, 2011 by Drake Magnum
This is a copy of the Matsuya Department Store family crest catalogue. There is a cross reference of the names and translations of the crests. Read morePublished on August 29, 2011 by Mountain Collector