Poe and Bellow are handmade by local artisan in Cirebon, Indonesia, a traditional center of rattan
production. These rattan stools are our only products made outside of Japan. Although it is our
general policy to make everything in Japan, that does not mean we are opposed to making products
overseas. The reason we are committed to domestic manufacturing is that it allows us to constantly
and directly monitor every detail of production. Yet, if we discover outstanding manufacturing
opportunities in another country — e.g., in the case of materials that enable superior production,
materials that are unavailable, or techniques that have been lost — we are prepared to work together
with people in other countries, investing the same level of importance and care that we do with
products we make in Japan.
Rattan is an example of this approach. Cirebon in Indonesia has a long and thriving history as a
center of the industrial art of making baskets and furniture from rattan. Many citizens of Cirebon
weave rattan into products as a life-long means of livelihood. Supporting their families with this
work, they start making rattan products in their early years and develop levels of skill. Some children
start making rattan products even before commencing school. Starting from a young age, the
people learn their art deeply and develop remarkable skills, conducting objects of complex shape
without any difficulty. They start by making a frame from thick rattan, according to a sketch or
drawing, after which they weave rattan precisely over the frame to create a curved surface. Seeing
how quickly they can weave almost any kind of shape is amazing.
The people of Cirebon wear expressions of real happiness. As we leave by car after a visit, children
continue to smile and wave their hands at us until we disappear from their sight. These rattan stools,
handwoven by such warmhearted people are redolent of happiness.
The stools are of trapezoidal shape, constructed of layered concentric circles for stability. The light
stools can be placed in a living room, bathroom, or anywhere their charming material fits well. Easily
movable, they can be used anywhere.