This is an faithful replica of the Kawari Kaigara Kabuto (Unique Helmet) that is on display in the Tokyo National Museum. Believed to be from the Momoyama Period (1568 – 1600), it has been handcrafted in the shape of a “turban”, a family of spiral-shelled marine snails whose hard, nacreous exteriors and occasionally sharp spines made them very defensive. The wakidate (side crests) feature a wave design representing the General’s ability to move strongly and unharmed. Much like the turban snail, he will move through the battlefield and crush his enemy like a tsunami wave.
The kawari-bachi (sometimes spelled kuwari-bachi) was popular during the end of the 16th century, due to foreign influence and materials coming into Japan. The kawari-bachi started to become more common and come with a wider variety of designs. One can only speculate on the different materials which might have been used to make these fantastic works of art. We do know that kawa (leather) ASA(hemp material), kokuso(natural plant paste) and sabi (paste made by mixing powdered burnt clay), then held together with rice or animal glues as well as urushi being the main adhesive were common materials used to make Kawari Kaigara style kabuto. These natural elements were combined by katchû-shi (Japanese armor smith) masters to make the ultimate works of wearable art, now replicated by our own master katchû-shi here at Iron Mountain Armory.
Features: Traditional handcrafted design. Taisho Class.
- Variation of paint, art silk odoshi colors and mengu designs.
- Full sized and fully functional.
- Includes Deluxe Stand and Kabuto Bitsu (storage / display box).
Our Taisho Katchû-shi at the Iron Mountain Armory will handcraft this product at the time of your order. Please allow at least 3 to 4 months for crafting of this item.
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References: “Art of the Samurai: Japanese Arms and Armor, 1156-1868” by Kazutoshi Harada, Metropolitan Museum of Art / “The Watanabe Art Museum Samurai Armour Collection Volume 1: Kabuto & Mengu” by Trevor Absolon & David Thatcher