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Wagata-Bon Japanese Traditional Tray Making - KOITOYA 2021

2 days course. Making Japanese traditional tray making, Wagata-Bon. Chestnut is the key timber in this workshop!

About this Event

Wagata Bon - Japanese Traditional Tray Making

2 days, $300 inc.GST

7-8 August 2021

What is Wagata Bon?

Wagata Bon

The tray, called Wagata-bon or Tasuke-bon for its distinct style, is typically made of chestnut wood that was abundant around Wagatani, Ishikawa, Japan. Wagatani village was flooded under a dam in 1965 and the tradition of the tray making became lost. Its rim and bottom are carved out of a single piece of fresh, un-dried wood and there are vertical chisel marks that feature on the tray.

This style of tray appears to have been made by several woodworkers in the village and came in various sizes that depended on what scrap materials were available for use at the time. Very few of the original trays have been found outside the vicinity of Wagatani, so this suggests that they may have been locally bartered for food and daily necessities by the woodworkers.

Shinichi Moriguchi has been in the heart of reviving this once lost tray making. He has been making the tray and teaching Wagata-bon making to pass the tradition to young maker in Japan.

Hiroshi has learnt this skill in 2017 in Japan under Shinichi Moriguchi. Hiroshi is aiming to revive this style of tray making in Australia, to conect with chestnut project in Sassafras Nuts farm, in his Japanese way.

Why using chestnut at Sassafras Nuts?

Chestnut was used for this traditional Wagata-bon making in Japan. Chestnut is a great material for various craft making. 

Chestnut trees in Sassafras Nuts farm are cut down when they come to the end of their nut production life. It is Hiroshi and owners, Richard and Alison's dream to use this wonderful material to give it a second life.

Sassafras Nuts farm


2 days, 10 hours in total

Proposed time schedule for each day.

Day 1 : 9:30-12:00 | 13:00-16:00

Day 2 : 9:00-11:00 | 12:00-14:30


Koitoya Japanese Woodworking Class (Oaks Estate, ACT)


Hiroshi Yamaguchi (KOITOYA Design/Make/Teach)

23 years of experience. Learned in Takayama, Japan.

Learnt Wagata bon making under Shinichi Moriguchi in 2017.


  1.  Making Japanese traditional style tray, Wagata-bon

You will gain the following from signing up

  1. Small to middle size tray, all made by yourself by hand.
  2. Hands-on knowledge about round chisel usage. 
  3. knowledge about Wagata-bon.


Day 1 

AM: Picking the timber, experience of splitting a log using hand tools.

PM: Roughing out the inside by round deep chisels

Day 2

AM: Finishing the inside of the tray by round shallow chisels

PM: Finishing the side of the tray by plane.

Things to bring

Please wear working shoes.

Tight fitting rubber gloves, if you need a pair for carving work. (optional)

Bring your own water bottle and lunch.

Things to be supplied

Tea and coffee, snacks (pre- packaged)


We will follow basic public health practice and regulation at the time of the workshop.

Common places will be wiped with cleaner. Please use hand sanitizer we supply when you come in.

Avoid sharing things is one of key element. Iwill recommend bringing your own hand towel to wipe your own hand.

We will be supplying some limited snacks than usual, they are all packed separately. Please bring your own drink (hot/cold) or cup avoid using workshop cups. There will be a kettle and some tea packs supplied.

Please don't come in if you are not feeling well. There will be full refund if not beable to attend due to your health.

Overstate guests

If you are coming from other state than ACT or Qeanbyan area, please follow travel re strictions.

Please see the link for details.



Class size

Maximum 8

Number of stuff


Refund Policy

Personal cancelation

Refunds up to 7 days before event

Eventbrite's fee is nonrefundable.

Cancelation due to Covid 19 or your health on the day

Full refund.

for more information please contact Hiroshi / 0412340619

KOITOYA Design/Make/Teach

Disclaimer: Due to the current uncertainty regarding coronavirus, please contact the event organiser directly via the contact details on the listing if you are unsure.