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Published on Oct 20, 2011
Kokeshi Dolls originated in North-East Japan as wooden toys for children. They began being produced towards the end of the Edo period (1603~1868) by woodwork artisans, called Kiji-shi, who normally made bowls, trays and other tableware by using a lathe. They began to make small dolls in the winter to sell to visitors who came to bathe in the many hot springs near their villages, which was believed to be a cure for the demands of a strenuous agricultural lifestyle.
The popularity of Kokeshi dolls began to spread to other areas, so woodworkers from other hot spring resorts imitated those skills and made their own Kokeshi dolls to sell as souvenirs. They then gradually established their own Kokeshi style. Kokeshi dolls that are made today can be classified........