Sold! Vintage Flower Stalks Matcha Bowl

Vintage Matcha Bowl with Chrysanthemums


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Potter: unknown
Kyoyaki Pottery, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture, Japan
Age: made in the early 2000’s
Condition: vintage, excellent
Quantity: a one-of-a-kind bowl
3.5″ wide
Packaged in a paper box


Shop for Japanese Matcha


Potters fashion Matcha bowls from various clay in all of the famous pottery making areas of Japan. They are traditionally hand-built from local clay that has been fired in wood, electric or gas fired kilns that do not reach a high internal temperature. As such, Matcha bowls are softer in density and clay structure than porcelain tea wares, which are fired at a very high temperature and whose glaze has bonded with the clay to create a hard, durable piece.


Matcha bowls are made for whisking and drinking powdered green tea and are durable for this use, but are not meant for drinking hotter-temperature types of tea such as black tea. Nor are they meant to be used as a teapot substitute for steeping loose-leaf tea.


In Japan and Korea much attention is paid to the unique characteristics of handmade pottery, and this includes all of the variables that make a handmade piece unique. A drippy glaze, a slightly lopsided lip, a finger mark in the glaze, etc, are examples of character that shows ‘the hand’ of the maker.


Matcha bowls can develop glaze cracks on the inside and outside surfaces of the clay depending on the type of clay and the type of glaze the bowl has been given. Cracks that appear only in the glaze with used (as opposed to cracks in the actual clay body) do not leak or weaken the vessel. Glaze cracks  and are held in high regard by tea drinkers, tea wares collectors and potters. It is the ‘voice of the clay’ speaking, and is viewed as the piece contributing some ‘self-patterning’ to the surface appearance. No two pieces of pottery will ever be exactly the same when the glaze develops a unique pattern of distinguishing glaze cracks from use.


Owning a Matcha bowl requires thoughtful handling and careful use.


Matcha bowls are not intended for use in a microwave or dishwasher. These tea bowls are meant to be simply rinsed and air-dried on a kitchen towel on the counter-top after use. Using Matcha bowls for tea other than powdered green tea can result in introducing water to the bowl that is too hot – this will encourage more glaze cracking to develop.


Please be aware that some foot-rings on Matcha bowls are intentionally not glazed and that un-glazed clay can be rough. While foot-rings such as these are considered desirable, one should take care to protect wooden table surfaces, counter-tops, and stainless-steel surfaces from being scratched.

This stunning tea bowl gleams with a high shine, clear glaze. The flower design on the front of the bowl is that of stylized Kiku – chrysanthemums – preening in fromt of a fence. The design was inspired by an image on a painted screen residing in the Daikakuji Temple, Kyoto, Japan.

Kiku are a symbol of longevity and rejuvenation in Japan. First introduced to Japan during the Nara period (710 – 793 AC), the chrysanthemum was later adopted as the emblem of the Japanese Imperial Family.

Kiku is a perfect symbolic motif for a tea bowl – a vessel that celebrates a tea drinking style with a long history of relevancy – and the powdered tea that is drunk from the bowl which provides refreshment and restful reflection in a busy world.

This bowl has a very graceful shape. Contributing to this is a gentle pinch in the middle of the bowl that flares the top section just a little. Overall, the tea bowl is fairly large in size and taller than it is wide. A small portion of kiku are repeated along the inside rim of the tea bowl and the backside of the bowl.

Seasonal tea bowls celebrate flowers, trees and colors of each season, and tea masters and tea teachers have a collection of these throughout the year for the appropriate occasion. Seasonal tea bowls fit into the theme for the tea ceremony that is chosen by the tea master, which, along with a simple floral arrangement and calligraphic scroll /poem, honors the arrival of the new season

For collectors looking for an autumn motif-inspired tea bowl this one fits the bill nicely.

Please Note:
This is a handmade item – slight variations in the painting, colors, tooling, patterning and kiln effects of Chinese and Japanese teawares are to be expected. We have carefully photographed this item as best as possible – please be aware that different device screens can render colors and subtle tones slightly differently.