Noren: Japanese Fabric Dividers

暖簾 (のれん)

The kanji for “noren” are 暖, which is used for “atatakai” (warm), and , which is used for screen/ blind in the furnishing sense. Perhaps we should therefore understand the original intent as warmth blinds, blinds intended to add figurative warmth to a home or establishment.

Noren are used by traditional Japanese shops and restaurants. They allow an owner to cover an entrance without blocking it, maintain an open air connection for ventilation, block sun and dust from the outside, and provide a flexible (in multiple senses) platform for advertising.

Yes, before electronic billboards and neon signs, there were noren!

Actually, there still are today. In particular, Noren have a long association with bathhouses.

There is a long association between rabbits and the moon in Japanese culture. – J

J Sensei

About J Sensei

Blogger, writer, linguist, former Japanese> English translator, rusty in French, experienced in Japanese, fluent English native. Writing for Technorati.com and various blogs. Skype: jeremiah.bourque (messages always welcome). E-mail: jeremiahbourque@gmail.com
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