the new blue & white :: Okan Arts
the new blue & white

the new blue & white


By Patricia Belyea

TOKYO JP  What’s new at Blue & White, Amy Katoh’s beloved shop in Tokyo? Its location is the biggest change. For over 35 years, Blue & White was tucked into a small storefront on Azabu Juban in Minato City. As of last April, the 2.0 version of Blue & White opened one building away—this time on the second floor.

To access the new Blue & White, you go up the cutest outdoor escalator. There you are welcomed with a smiling Otafuku—the Japanese deity of joy—as the handle on the glass door. Windows and more windows wrap around the store, flooding it with the light.

Unchanged is Amy’s commitment to sharing the best of traditional and contemporary Japanese arts and crafts with the world. Carefully chosen goods fill shelves and baskets. Gifts of every price make it easy for you to do all your take-home gift shopping in one spot. And choose something for yourself—a special textile, scarf, jacket, or market bag!

Blue & White, by design, creates happiness!

Here’s a photo tour of the shop:

To visit Blue & White, take the subway (Namboku or Oedo Line) to Azabu Juban Station and head out Gate 4. Then walk a few blocks up the hill to the shop.

To navigate through the neighborhood with Google Maps, use this address: 2-9-2 Azabu Jūban, Minato-ku, Tokyo (tel: 03 3451 0537)

Open 11am to 6pm every day (except New Year’s)

To read Amy’s charming blog where she writes about her continual discoveries of remarkable people and places in Japan +click here

leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

8 comments to “the new blue & white”

  1. Michelle H says:

    Beautiful shop! What amazing craftsmanship you are surrounded by..such incredible artists, what a joy it must be to be there every day

    • Patricia Belyea says:

      Michelle—Blue & White has become a must-see shop for quilters who venture to Tokyo. The quilters appreciate the crafts and craftsmanship. PB

  2. Janet C. Wright says:

    Envious of your wonderful trip. I have always want ted to go to Blue and White. I have one of her books.

  3. Nat Palaskas says:

    I have been to the old Blue and White on one of my previous visit. Will have to go there next time. Yes, there will be next time and next Tokyo Quilt Fest! And Janet, I will take you!

  4. Priscilla Schneider says:

    I wish I could see the store. We used to live in Ishibashi Homes-which was just up the hill from the original Blue and White. I was a good customer many years ago. Good luck in the new store! Priscilla

  5. Amy Katoh says:

    My head is spinning Patricia. Minor foot surgery has chained me to my sofa and without thinking, I have become a fortunate couch potato. As I result I have spent dawn’s early light this morning devouring all – or at least much! – that you have written about your endangered indigo crop, (as well you know, your Michael is a dream!) – quite a tale! how did it work out? – and the Tokyo quilt show – who made the whimsical simple red and white quilt with the stylized Otafuku face? shades of the brilliant designer, Tanaka Ikko, now no longer with us. You indigo learning with Bryan has been captivating! I’m going to the hardware store as soon as I am walking again, to buy some yutampo, this year’s Christmas present, if ever we are allowed to send packages! and your travels around Japan. All intriguing and enticing! But somehow I had missed Daruma’s omnipresence in all you have done. He has been thrilled to be included and I will print it out and show it to dear Okunushi san. I felt a bit jealous to have missed some of the fun he has had! The places he has been! And your generous writing about Blue & White and our ongoing work (work makes it sound difficult. To the contrary, it has been a joy!) to share the discoveries and glories of Japan’s craftsmen and women, not to mention the undiscovered marvels of Japan. You have filled me with surprise to read what you have written, as well as new found confidence and resolve to march on! Thank you for your endorsement!
    So onward we go to get out our yearly calendar: this year the subject is GENKI! Something we all will be needing in the year to come. And new found courage to go on with several pending books that I am not savvy enough to market effectively. Will do a makeshift printing and send you one to disseminate to your followers should you deem it worthy.
    Heartfelt thanks for your steadfast support and for believing in BLUE & WHITE!

    • Patricia Belyea says:

      Amy—What a treat to hear from you! I’m so sorry about your foot surgery. Perhaps I’ll get the chance to see your 2021 calendar—always a delight. PB