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Chaki Types and Styles

There are two main types of cha-ki 茶器 (tea caddies):

  • chaire 茶入 or koicha-ki 濃茶器 (thick tea caddies): typically ceramic ware

    Chaire may be classified both by shape (see examples below) and by types of pottery or stone ware; e.g., Bizen ware, Karatsu ware, Shigaraki ware, etc. For an excellent overview of Japanese pottery see Robert Yellin's Guidebook at e-YAKIMONO.NET.

  • natsume 棗 or usucha-ki 薄茶器 (thin tea caddies): typically plain or lacquered wood

    Natsume are generally classified by shape (see examples below). They range from the classic plain black lacquer to fairly elarorate pieces with extensive maki-e lacquer designs.

For more information see:

Type Style Description Illustration
Chaire 茶入 or koicha-ki 濃茶器:
ankō 鮟鱇 "sea wolf"—wide mouth, narrow neck, & wide body chaire_anko (44K)
bunrin 文琳 apple shape chaire_bunrin (49K)
daikai 大海 "big ocean"— chaire with large diameter & a wide mouth chaire_taikai (58K)
entsubo 円壺 circle shape chaire_entsubo (69K)
hyōtan 瓢箪 gourd shape chaire_hyotan (40K)
katatsuki 肩衝 pronounced "shoulders" at the top chaire_katasuki (39K)
kokatatsuki chaire_kokatatsuki (45K)
marutsubo 丸壺 round shape with thinner neck chaire_marutsubo (48K)
mimitsuki 耳付 chaire with "ears" chaire_mimitsuki_chaire (42K)
naikai or utsumi 内海 "inland sea"—smaller version of daiki chaire_naikai (57K)
nasu 茄子 eggplant shape chaire_nasu (56K)
shiribukura 尻膨
or shiribari 尻張
chaire with a large bottom chaire_shiribari (53K)
shiteki 四滴 set of 4 ceramic chaire usually with a single common lid; typically a set includes:
  • suiteki 水滴
  • tegame 手瓶
  • tsurutsuki 弦付
  • yuteki 油滴
shiteki_a (49K) shiteki_b (49K)
suiteki 水滴 chaire made from or shaped like water-droppers for the ink-stones used in calligraphy; with spout and handle suiteki_chaire (70K)
tegame 手瓶 chaire with a handle on one side tegame_chaire (69K)
tsurukubi 鶴首 crane's neck shape chaire_tsurukubi (33K)
tsurutsuki 弦付 chaire with overarching handle chaire_tsurutsuki (51K)
yuteki 油滴 chaire made from or shaped like an oil dropper for lamps; with a spout but no handle yuteki_chaire (60K)
Natsume 棗 or usucha-ki 薄茶器:
akoda 阿古陀 shape like the Akoda gourd usuki_akodanatsume (46K)
bōshi-natsume 帽子棗 lid shaped like a cap usuki_boshinatsume (35K)
dōbari-natsume 胴張棗 wider in the middle usuki_dobari (51K)
fubuki 吹雪 top rim beveled usuki_fubuki (52K)
goki 碁器 shaped like bowls for the stones in Go (Game) 碁 usuki_goki (41K)
hinomaru 日の丸 shaped like the sun's disk usuki_hinomaru (43K)
hira-natsume 平棗 flat natsume usuki_hiranatsume (56K)
hyōtan 瓢箪 gourd shape usuki_hyotan (64K)
kawatarō 河太郎 shaped like a kappa's 河童 head usuki_kawataro (40K)
kinrinji-natsume 金輪寺棗 cylindrical shape with lid overhaning the sides usuki_kinrinji (49K)
koaka 甲赤 short natsume with a red lid usuki_koaka (44K)
naga-natsume 長棗 tall, slender shape usuki_naganatsume (47K)
nakatsugi 中次 lid & body join in the middle usuki_nakatsugi (68K)
natsume 棗: shape like a jujube fruit usuki_natsume (51K)
    ■ ō-natsume 大棗 large natsume—approx. 3 in. high usuki_onatsume (67K)
    ■ chū-natsume 中棗 medium natsume—approx. 2.5 in. high usuki_chunatsume (56K)
    ■ ko-natsume 小棗 small natsume—approx. 2 in. high usuki_konatsume (75K)
oimatsu 老松 natsume with a hinged lid usuki_oimatsu (41K)
Rikyū-gata 利休形 a shape favored by Sen no Rikyū, 1522-1591 usuki_rikyugata (28K)
shiribari-natsume 尻張棗 natsume with a large bottom usuki_shiribari (45K)
yakki 薬器 natsume shaped like a Chinese medicine jar usuki_yakki2 (34K)

Chadōgu 茶道具 (tea ceremony tools)