I would like to introduce “Mochi Bana” (餅花, もちばな) today.
“Mochi Bana”, rice cake flower is a Japanese traditional winter decoration. It is made up of branches, many small rice cakes and pine and nandina branches.
It is said that Japanese people started to make it and put it in their houses and street to color winter scenery. It contains wishes for the productiveness of grain (we call it “Gokoku-Hojo (五穀豊穣)” so we still add colors of Mochi Bana to our life.
However, less people continue to make or decorate these days. Our community try to keep this culture so we make it and sell at local festivals. We taught children how to make it in this festival and they also can make it .
I also tried to make it last winter for the first time. I would like to report some procedures of making Mochi Bana.
Step 1: Gather branches and fix them on a stub.
Step 2: Spread rice cake dough into thin and long. Cut it into a small four-sided shape. Cut it at an angle and attache to the branch. Attache many pieces of rice cake.
Final Step : Decorate branches of pine and nandina.
This is a one of the Mochi Bana style. There many other type of Mochi Bana depending on regions and also creatos. Finally, I’d like to share various types of Mochi Bana pictures.
Read more about Nandina craft, “Nanten Dama”