Can Japanese umbrellas be repaired? How long does it last?

Can Japanese umbrellas be repaired? How long does it last?

Questions that are often asked when purchasing a Japanese umbrella include ``How many years can it be used?'' and ``Can it be repaired?''
Here we will introduce the repairs we offer at Wagasa CASA, as well as examples of repairs we have received from customers who have purchased them, along with photos!

There is also an item about repairs on the " Frequently Asked Questions " page, so please take a look at that as well.

How many years can it be used?

It is very difficult to tell how many years a product has been used because the frequency of use and storage methods vary depending on the user. When I hear from people who actually use the product, I get the impression that many of them have been using it for around 5 years, but this is just one example.
There is no exact guideline for how many years it will last because it depends on how often you use it and how you use it, but some people have used it for 5 or 10 years. If you use it carefully and extend its lifespan, it will be highly practical.

Before requesting repair...

Photo with Japanese umbrella propped up

We will ask you for details when we accept your repair.
There are many cases where the origin of gifts or gifts is unknown, so we would appreciate it if you could let us know as much as you know.
・How old is the Japanese umbrella itself?
- Areas to be repaired (Japanese paper, missing umbrella ribs, frayed threads, raincoats, rattan wrappers, etc.)
・What condition is it currently in? (The washi paper is torn, the joints between bones are missing, etc.)
・How the above situation came about (naturally, dropped, fanned by the wind, etc.)
・Production area and purchase location (various locations nationwide, including Gifu, Kyoto, and Kanazawa)

About Japanese paper repair

The entire Japanese paper of Janome Umbrellas and Bangasa Umbrellas becomes yellowish over time. (This is not deterioration)
At the same time, the washi paper itself contains oil, so it gradually hardens over the years, causing tears to appear on its own. The areas that are most likely to appear are the folds, edges, and eaves of washi paper.

Japanese paper torn eaves

Repair of Japanese paper

If it's just a matter of filling in the holes, it will be a patchwork, but it's something that can be repaired.
However, there are cases where repairs may limit the functionality of the umbrella. Please note that we will check with the craftsman and advise you on the repair details according to the condition.

About replacing Japanese umbrellas

If you want to reupholster all the washi paper, it will cost more than new paper because you will have to dismantle everything and start from scratch.
Furthermore, if a Japanese umbrella has been purchased for more than 20 years, the bamboo ribs are likely to deteriorate and become less durable, and there is also a risk of damage during repair work.
Depending on the condition, the craftsman may refuse your repair request.

Other repair points

Umbrella joint (mekake)

The connecting part between the main rib and the small bones is made by using the joints of the bamboo on the main bone and cutting the tips of the small bones apart a little.
Since it operates when opening and closing and is subject to stress, it is also a place where bones are prone to chipping or cracking.
If the bamboo bones become detached from the joints, this can lead to the washi paper being torn.
We will check the condition and advise you whether repairs can be made.

Overlocking thread (thread overlocking)

Threading a Janome umbrella

It is also possible to repair the threads on the inside of the Janome umbrella and parasol.

Darning thread, which is also used to reinforce umbrellas, can easily break as it deteriorates.
If the thread breaks, the umbrella will open too much, so you need to fix it quickly! You don't have to worry about it, but you may be concerned about the appearance of the threads hanging down.

When fixing thread stitching, you may need to pull out all the threads and rethread them.
The thread is threaded through a hole in the bamboo bone using a needle. The bones need to be strong enough to withstand the threading, so it may be difficult to repair older Japanese umbrellas.
(There is a risk of bones breaking due to the recoil when passing the thread.)


This time I introduced how to repair Japanese umbrellas.
Japanese umbrellas are made using natural materials such as wood, bamboo, and Japanese paper, and there are various types of repair requests.
For Japanese umbrellas that have been requested for repair, we will check with the craftsman who made them and provide information on whether or not the umbrella can be repaired, delivery date, cost, etc. (It may be difficult to accommodate Japanese umbrellas from different production areas.)
We appreciate your understanding as repairs will take time.

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