Urushito Glass by Japan Joboji

Urushito Glass is a minimalist design created by Japan Joboji. Urushi is an adhesive and coating made from the purified sap of the Urushi Tree. The material itself is very basic, and can be used in a plethora of applications from tableware to paintings. The Urushi paintings are highly valued, and date back to the Heian Period of the 8th Century. Europeans wanted to replicate the Urushi material, but since there were no Urushi trees in their region, they created multi-colored imitations that eventually became the modern-day lacquer.


The glass portion of the design is locally sourced from Hagi, on the northern coast of Yamaguchi. The glass has a very distinctive pale green tint, and is extremely stable after it is processed in 1500 degree Celsius heat. Although the glass may feel thin and insubstantial, it is in fact harder to break than most glass seen on the market today.

The lacquer coats are applied six to seven times, and each layer must fully dry before the next is applied. The glass, wood, and lacquer are all handmade, and completed by a handful of master craftsmen in Japan. With that being said, the designs are incredibly unique due to their hyper-local sourcing, and the fact that only a few craftsman can actually create the product.












Leo Lei translates his passion for minimalism into his daily-updated blog Leibal. In addition, you can find uniquely designed minimalist objects and furniture at the Leibal Store.