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Preserving and Re-imaging Japanese Craft with F/style

Emi Igarashi and Wakana Hoshino, both born in Niigata Japan, co-founded the brand 'F/style' in 2001.

Photo by Kentaro Kase/Photo Kentaro Kase/©Kentaro Kase:

Both graduates from Tohoku University of Art & Design, they joined together to create a brand centered around 'the art of marking things' or 'monozukuri' as it is known in Japanese.  

F/style serves a focused mission to re-popularize ancient Japanese craft by applying them to contemporary designs that can exist within a wide-range of modern aesthetics.

F/style's open air showroom in Niigata is a perfect reflection of the duo's shared appreciation for subtle beauty....


Tortoise Agency Brings Japanese Brands to U.S. Audience:

A Tortoise Affiliated Wholesale Wing

Leading Tortoise Agency is Herbert Johnson, former buyer and General Manager of Tortoise General Store.

As an affiliated wholesale division, Tortoise Agency maintains a roster of companies that share the ‘slow and steady’ Tortoise philosophy. Drawing on traditional Japanese craft to guide their manufacturing processes, their client companies maintain small production lines with focused attention on quality and detail.

The Agency is a one-stop-shop for Japanese brands seeking entry into the U.S. market. Assisting those that require marketing direction or a leg up on social media platforms or help translating Japanese...


Accepting Resumes Now for Part Time & Full Time Opportunity Starting in May

Tortoise is a curated multi-functional retail space dedicated to Japanese design, craft and art.  

Position: Part-Time and Full-Time Associates with weekend availability

Start date: May

Location: Los Angeles based candidates preferred

Language: English and Japanese fluency strongly preferred 

Salary: $15/hour (training) / $17/hour (part-time) / TBD (full-time)

Please email resume and cover letter to: emma@tortoiselife.com

Starting as soon as possible, Tortoise is seeking an enthusiastic retail associate with background knowledge of Japanese culture and design.

Japanese language fluency is strongly preferred.

The ideal candidate would possess previous retail or retail-related experience, and have the ability...


WWD x Tortoise at Retail Summit 20/20 Tokyo Forum

Tortoise was honored to receive an invitation to speak at the recent WWD Retail Summit 20/20 Forum held in Tokyo, Japan.

Keiko Shinomoto, Tortoise co-owner, spoke among a panel of speakers that included Phillip Lim of 3.1 Phillip Lim, Rick Ridgeway of Patagonia, and Ramdane Touhami of Officine Universelle Buly among others.

The purpose of the Forum was to share ideas and new ways of thinking on how retail leaders can build artisanal, sustainable, and cutting-edge enterprises that appeal to a growing generation of discerning consumers and how this translates into creating physical retail spaces today and merging this into the digital consumer...


Kintsugi Workshop with Tomomi Kamashita! Spring Workshop Dates!

Born in Tokyo Japan, Tomomi Kamoshita is a potter and ceramics teacher.

Kintsugi is a gold joinery method that dates back to the 15th century.  A way for damaged pottery to be artfully repaired by skilled potters, the cracks and breaks are filled with a gold alloy - traditionally a mix of gold powder and Japanese lacquer called urushi - to seal it back together. 

For those familiar with the term 'wabi-sabi', most likely are also familiar with kintsugi - the artistic manifestation of the wabi sabi philosophy celebrating imperfection, incompleteness, and impermanence.  

We are happy...