Hana Japanese Antiques has been a direct importer of Japanese antique tansu 古箪笥 in Edo period, Meiji period, Taisho period and antique mingei 民芸 folk art from Japan since 1999.

Our customers come from throughout the United States including the San Francisco Bay Area, East Bay, the East Coast, and Southern California.

In its relatively short history, Hana has gained a reputation for its signature style of tansu. Hana’s concept is to maintain each tansu with the original Japanese aesthetic — the beauty of a period tansu is in the combination of the wood and ironware highlighted by the aged patina. In addition to the inventory of tansu, Hana carries various antique mingei items, antique fabric including kasuri, boro, silk, and antique old
ceramic pottery.
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what is tansu?

Tansu is the traditional mobile storage cabinetry indigenous to Japan. Tansu was first recorded in the Genroku era of the Edo Period (1688–1704). The two characters, TAN and SU, appear to have initially represented objects with separate functions: the storage of food and the carrying of firewood. Since the radical for bamboo appears in each of these characters, it may be conjectured that wood was not as yet used.

woods commonly used in tansu

japanese name english name
keyaki zelkova
hinoki japanese cypress
kiri paulownia
sugi japanese cedar
kuri japanese chestnut
kaki persimmon
kuwa mulberry


period name period dates
nara period 646 – 794
heian period 794 – 1185
kamakura period 1185 – 1336
muromachi period 1336 – 1568
momoyama period 1568 – 1603
edo period 1603 – 1868
modern period 1868 – present
meiji era 1868 – 1912
taisho era 1912 – 1926
showa era 1926 – 1990
heisei era 1990 – present