THE SIGNIFICANCE OF SAKURA:
WHAT CHERRY BLOSSOM MEANS TO JAPAN
The delicate beauty of cherry blossom has fascinated generation after generation, inspiring millennia-old traditions and becoming an integral part of Japanese culture,
but what is the significance of Japanese cherry blossom, and what has this got to do with Onitsuka Tiger?
WHAT DOES CHERRY BLOSSOM SYMBOLISE?
Cherry blossom, or Sakura, is intertwined throughout Japanese culture. The delicate pale pink of the petals and their fleeting existence has ignited the imaginations of artists, authors, playwrights and filmmakers. Each tiny flower unfolds delicately, revealing beautiful petals that burst with life, each only appearing for a few days. The symbolism of the cherry blossom holds strong in Japan, and this idea of transience, the impermanence life, is celebrated and not mourned in Japanese culture. This is the philosophy of mono no aware – the appreciation of things that are with us for only a brief period of time. This philosophy had a heavy significance, especially for the Samurai in feudal Japan; the brief life of Sakura symbolised that death could come at any time, so there is no need to fear this inevitability. The cherry blossom represents life’s fragility, yet beauty and this ethereal vibrancy is still at it’s core. The cherry blossom of the Somei-Yoshino cherry tree was chosen as the official flower of the Metropolitan area of Tokyo. As one of the most populated and forward-thinking areas of the world, the impact of Sakura shows no bounds on past, present or future generations.
"It’s a celebration of the passing beauty of the blossom
as a form of introspection."
WHAT MONTH IS THE CHERRY BLOSSOM IN JAPAN?
While spring is the most common time for blossom, cherry blossom visibility can be viewed across Japan at various other times too. The earliest full bloom can be found in February in the southern prefecture of Okinawa. Most commonly, however, the blossom begins to open in late March and reaches full bloom in early April across cities such as Kyoto, Osaka and Tokyo. It is in the month of April that Japanese families gather under the blossoming canopies of cherry trees for the festival of Hanami. It’s a celebration of the passing beauty of the blossom as a form of introspection. The cherry blossom also signifies renewal and prosperity for the future, as the year springs into new life following the winter months.
SAKURA DYE FABRIC: INSPIRED BY A SYMBOLIC LEGACY
Our Sakura dye fabric has been infused into our knit-base and pile-base shoe collections. This world-famous symbol of Japanese culture has been, quite literally, soaked into the very fabric of our fashion trainers. Using an innovative Japanese dyestuff technology, real cherry blossom has been used to create an attractive pale pink colourway. In addition to these subtle colour tones, the fabric is made from 100% organic cotton, adding an ethical and eco-friendly dimension to these already symbolic and elegant shoes