What would you do when you returned from a vacation in Japan and then realized that you simply miss the country? We took care of the problem by trying to recreate certain aspects of the house we rented in Kyoto. Most rooms in the house had tatami floor and it wasn’t hard to fall in love with the thick, soft rice straw mats. Although we liked the scent from the rice straw tatami, we ordered 3cm thick mats made by Japanese washi paper. The main reason for using paper is that we’ve got both friends and family who are allergic to grass.
We got the tatami mats delivered to us a couple of days before Christmas and my husband was a bit worried that I wouldn’t be able to handle them myself. “It’s alright, you have no idea how strong I can be if I really want something”, I said to him as he was getting ready for work. The delivery man who turned up with the two large packages didn’t look very muscular to me and he juggled them with ease so I thought that it would be a walk in the park for me to carry the mats up to the third floor. I was dead wrong. The weight of the darned packages was 30kg each. Luckily, my neighbour showed up to save the day!
The tea table is a real family project. My parents in law gave it to us since they didn’t really use it any more. My dad offered to sandpaper it (not by hand though, he’s got a machine). My father in law then helped us saw off the legs to make it shorter. I then stained the table in a wonderful dark-brown colour. Last but not least, my husband covered it with varnish to make the surface more sustainable. A lot of work but great result!