Nousaku (3)

Copperware production began in the city of Takaoka in 1611 when, two years after establishing Takaoka Castle, to revitalize the local industry, Maeda Toshinaga Lord of Kaga Domain (covering parts of present-day Ishikawa and Toyama prefectures) encouraged production by inviting seven imono copper-casting artisans to take up residence in the castle town. Initially, pots and kettles and other everyday household and agricultural items were made in the town but, eventually, town artisans did a flourishing trade in Buddhist altar items and, from the latter half of the 19th century, branched out into tea ceremony articles, ornaments and other arts and crafts items. Today Takaoka makes 90% of the production in Japan, from temple bells to bronze statues, of copper alloy vases, tea ceremony items, figures, and other craft goods. Most products are made by casting, that is, pouring molten metal into moulds and, depending on the size and type of object, artisans usually select one of four main casting techniques. In addition, another inherited local skill is engraving, which is used for applying various patterns to surfaces.

Using traditional skills and innovative technology to explore the new potential in casting.

Founded in 1916, Nousaku started out making copper-alloy cast works mainly for Buddhist altars. In the factory, you can still smell the sand of the moulds and feel the heat of molten metal as artisans craft each individual piece using inherited green-sand casting skills.

In recent years, leveraging our long-cultivated technology, working with tin as a raw material, we have also been creating contemporary design products. Among these are new Nousaku signature pieces: mesh-like flats of soft, 100%-pure tin that can be freely formed into shapes.

When our office has relocated to new premises at the end of April 2017, in a studio workshop, you will be able to experience casting for yourself and, in the cafe restaurant, to enjoy dining on meals served on tin tableware.


These goods can be composted at the end of their useful life, leaving no trace of their existence.

Ethically Made

These goods are made by suppliers that pay fair wages, guarantee no child labour, and maintain a safe working environment.


Handcrafted goods are one of a kind that have been created by skilled artisans often using techniques passed down through generations, rather than by automated, machine-based processes. Small irregularities are celebrated and are what make handcrafted goods unique.


These goods are manufactured in the same country in which they are designed. This sustains the local economy and is more equitable for the workers and their communities. 


These goods have been crafted with materials that are derived from naturally occurring materials, plants or animals, with minimal processing. 


Goods that are made from organically grown materials and are free from harmful chemicals and pesticides. 


In an effort to reduce waste, the design of these goods are either part or wholly made from up-cycled or previously used materials. These can be either salvaged directly in their current form or from recycled materials, such as paper, glass or metal.


Goods made from materials that can be replenished at the rate they are consumed, all with minimal environmental and social impact. Such as FSC wood, bamboo and wool. 


These goods are produced by artisans or companies that are open, honest, and straightforward about their business operations. Transparency builds trust, from makers through to customers.


These are goods that contain absolutely no animal products or by-products and were not tested on animals at any stage.