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OUR STORY / 我們的故事

Cul de Sac was founded in 2011, started as a genderless independent fashion label. Later in 2015, founder Mineko Muraguchi introduced a series of essential oils and mists, made from the extracts of Hiba, an aromatic wood native to northern Japan's Aomori prefecture.

Ms Mineko Muraguchi shared, “My family has owned a Hiba timber farm since my grandfather’s generation. With this family background, I have been taught the benefits of Hiba wood since a very young age, and I would like to introduce the wonderful natures of Hiba wood to more people. To this day, the majority of our products are manufactured at our family timber farm and the handcrafted products are done by local artisans.”

Local authorities in the Edo period (1603 to 1868) imposed strict regulations against the logging of these valuable trees. The forests where Hiba trees were grown were reclaimed by the state, and remains state-owned till date. Regulations protect these trees from mass-production — they germinate and grow naturally, and can only be felled with permits when they fully mature. From end to end, the entire life cycle requires 250 years at least. When they do mature, lumbers and manufacturers have to bid for logging permits from the authorities. 

The Japanese craftsmen covet Hiba for its longevity and aromatic qualities. "Since long ago, Aomori Hiba has been recognised for being rot-resistant and highly durable. Therefore, it was used as a building material," Muraguchi explains. "Back then, people didn't have access to insect repellents and antiseptics. But people knew the Aomori Hiba." Its aroma repels pests and deodorises — which made it apt for public architecture and residences. 

Despite strict conservation regulations, the Aomori Hiba wood supply continues to dwindle — perhaps due to the lack of restoration and awareness projects. "Aomori Hiba is definitely decreasing in quantities now. Even though it's valued as a building material, I believe its worth is not sufficiently appreciated in Japan," Muraguchi continues. "I wanted more people to know about this tree. Therefore, I created a brand that just uses Aomori Hiba, Cul de Sac- JAPON." 

Cul de Sac 最初是一個成立於2011年的中性獨立時尚品牌。2015年時候,創始人村口実姉子推出了一系列由ヒバ萃取製成的精油和噴霧,ヒバ是一種原產於日本北部青森縣的芳香木。

村口実姉子表示:「 自從我爺爺那一代以來,我們家已經擁有ヒバ木場。 正因如此,我從小就被灌輸ヒバ木的好處。 到目前為止,Cul de Sac-Japon 的大部分產品都是在我們位於青森縣樹林的家庭木場製作,而手工產品就是由當地的工匠創作。」

 

江戶時代(1603年至1868年)的地方當局對這些珍貴樹木的伐木施加了嚴格的規定。 ヒバ樹種植的森林被國家收回,到目前為止仍然是國有的。法規保護這些樹木不被大規模生產 - 它們自然發芽和生長,並且只有在它們完全成熟時才能被許可砍伐。從頭到尾,整個生命週期至少需要250年。當它們成熟時,木材和製造商必須向當局申請伐木許可證。

 

日本工匠為了它的長壽和芳香品質而貪圖ヒバ。「 很久以前,青森ヒバ一直被認為具有抗腐蝕性和高耐久性。因此,它被用作建築材料,」村口解釋說。 「 那時候,人們無法獲得驅蟲劑和防腐劑。但人們都知道青森ヒバ。」

它的香氣可以驅除害蟲和除臭 - 這使它適合公共建築和住宅。

 

儘管嚴格的保護法規,青森ヒバ木材供應繼續減少 - 可能是由於缺乏恢復和意識項目。「 現在,青森ヒバ的數量肯定會減少。儘管它被認為是一種建築材料,但我相信它的價值在日本並不夠充分,」村口繼續說道。「 我希望更多人了解這棵樹。因此,我創造了一個只使用青森ヒバ的品牌 Cul de Sac- JAPON。」

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