On my last trip to Japan I saw a painted canvas bag in a window that I loved, and after a year of tracking them down, was given the opportunity to visit Yoshimi & Makoto at their Superior Labor Co. HQ in the mountains of Okayama. After a train ride from Kyoto, and an hour through windy mountain roads saw us arrive at Nap Inc.
The HQ is built around a cluster of buildings including Yoshimi & Makoto’s home, an outdoor shop, a café, a workshop, a sewing room and even a Canadian Cabin that was delivered flat packed. The workroom displays the workmanship and process of their product of canvas bags that are painted and stencilled, as well as small leather goods. Old sewing machines sit alongside leather branding and canvas painting paraphernalia.
We sit down for lunch in the café with cheeses from the famous cheese maker down the road, local smoked river trout and other European alfresco inspired food all in the setting of checked table cloths, wooden plates and other loveliness. What a marvellous day!