Instantly obvious the moment you hoist it on your shoulders
Among the streams of traditional culture and artisanship of Japan thriving in t...
You need to love something before you impart it to the world
We spoke with Yuichi Hirose, the fourth-generation owner of Hirose Dyeworks, a well- established dye workshop that has been making Edo Komon, a type of kimono patterns that originates from samurai’s ceremonial clothes, for over 100 years. Hirose told us about his philosophy of work. “In any field, many of the successful people in that field love what they do. For example, even Ichiro, the famous Major League Baseball player, loves baseball. In other industries, it’s fun to hear from people who are passionate about their work and give it their all. I like Edo Komon very much, and I think I think about it more than anyone else in the world.”
“If you’re not in love with something, then you won’t be able to share its wonders with others,” says Hirose. Since he was a boy, Hirose looked up to his family dyeworks business and imagined the day he would work passionately with it as his profession. “I’m the child of a dyer, so I want to dye things. That’s the world I want to compete in,” he told us.
Being a player, not a manager
In the past, there was a period where Hirose focused on sales and marketing. “I came up with a sales strategy, set a three-year goal, and achieved that goal,” says Hirose. “However, I was frustrated that meetings and marketing activities took away from my time in the workshop. I wanted to be a player, not a manager. After that, I became more and more attracted to the craftsmanship side of things.”
“There more I do this job,” he told us, “the more I enjoy it. It gets more fun every year. I’m always thinking about work, and nothing is more boring than a day off with nothing to do. I think my work is fun because I am creating what I want to create and sharing what I want to share. I’m not simply doing what others ask of me.” As one listens to Hirose, one can recognize something quiet, yet powerful pulsating inside each of his words.