Vases showcase beauty within

Courtesy of Noriko Inomoto

Vase “Volubilis”

By Kumi Matsumaru / Japan News Staff WriterThe uneven, flowing upper part of the glass vase has a flat, ribbon-like glass rim, making the voluminous vessel look like a brimmed hat placed upside down. It lets the meandering stems of baimoyuri, a species of fritillaria, settle peacefully both inside and outside the vase. Beside that, a stem of wild strawberry freely extends from the top and side of a smaller trunk-like vase. Both harmonize with what they hold, supporting and displaying their floral contents as if the vessels were the main part of the spectacle.

These vases are among the items in “Somoku Chuka: Noriko Inomoto Expositions,” which is currently being shown at the Roppongi branch of interior design store Idee Shop in the Tokyo Midtown commercial complex in Minato Ward, Tokyo. Designer Inomoto, known for her long experience in the world of interior decoration, especially in relation to flowers and food, created 16 glass vases for the exhibition.

Inomoto said she designed them after thinking about making a vase shaped like leaves, trees and flower buds. “By adding flowers to the vessels, you can enjoy the ‘stories’ that take shape,” she said.

Inomoto said she likes using glass to make vases because stems seen through water and glass can also be enjoyed as part of an arrangement. She added that even leaves on a table that have fallen from flowers in the vase can be part of the finished display.

As it’s the time of year when various flower bulbs are available to buy at florists and garden centers, it’s the perfect opportunity to grow tulips, muscari or crocus, using another one of her vases — a small vessel that comes with a holed plate that sits on the vase.

“You can enjoy the sight of bulbs sprouting on the small plate on the top of the vase,” Inomoto said. “Or you can use the base to hold flowers like a normal vase.”

Each one of Inomoto’s vases has a name, such as “Lotus” and “Citronnier,” reflecting her passion for the natural world.

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  • Courtesy of Noriko Inomoto

    Vase “Olivier” 

The 16 vases in the exhibition are on sale at the shop. Prices start at ¥4,200 before tax. As the vases are being sold at a shop that stocks a variety of interior items, you can see how they can be arranged in a room alongside other furnishings.

“Somoku Chuka: Noriko Inomoto Expositions” runs through Monday at Idee Shop Roppongi at Tokyo Midtown in Minato Ward, Tokyo. Admission is free.

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