Monday, October 28, 2013

japanese confections

About a month ago, I was asked to do some translating for the Toraya Confectionery company, a famous maker of wagashi (traditional Japanese confections). Toraya was established in Kyoto five centuries ago and served the imperial court as an official supplier of sweets from 1586 through 1611. At present, they have about 80 shops throughout Japan and are now opening shops overseas. Anyway, everyone in Japan knows and respects the name. 

I had made a decision long ago not to accept any new clients, but I jumped at the chance to translate for Toraya. I am utterly passionate about wagashi, and even have a wagashi recipe blog for sharing my attempts at reproducing these delicious confections in my own kitchen. 

The first task I was given, was to write up an introduction to Toraya's illustrated calendar, a much-coveted item among wagashi fans. The illustrations used in Toraya's 2014 calendar were selected from their 1824 design book, an index of what were then newly-conceived wagashi designs. The artwork reminded me a lot of etegami, so I thought you might enjoy seeing them. 

One of the perks of the job was getting a sample calendar. It's the cutest thing you can imagine. Now I'm working on updating the English version of their website. My deadline is looming, so bye for now.


  1. What an honor! I love the calendar too.

  2. Sounds wonderful! Can you share the link to your wagashi blog?

    1. The link to my wagashi blog is in the right hand column of this blog. Scroll down past my profile pic, to the list of my other blogs. I haven't updated the wagashi blog in a long time though... :(

  3. Wow, congrats on the job/contract, what an awesome opportunity. Not forgetting to mention, awesome credential to have in the future! Best wishes,
    Carol in Maryland

  4. Highly energetic article, I enjoyed that bit. Will there be a part 2?

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