Haibara’s letter paper: the chic letterheads loved by Takamori Saigo to convey his feelings.

Haibara’s letter paper

Table of Contents

Hope arrived to me when I was desperate and heartbroken.

When I moved to Tokyo from Fukuoka, I lived alone in a small apartment.
At the time, I was in my early 20s and had just graduated from college. Dreaming of becoming a stage actor, I spent my days attending an acting school attached to a movie studio during the day and working part-time in the evenings.

I had been fascinated by the world of theater and film since I was a child. I guess I was attracted by the action of “people acting people,” that is, “conveying people’s feelings through words, movement, and facial expressions.” As a student, I was not only an audience but also involved in acting and writing scripts.

However, when I stepped into the world of my dreams, the reality was more challenging than I had imagined, and dramatic developments like those in the scripts never came. When I felt like running away from my life with no hope and money and a broken heart, I received a parcel from my parents in Fukuoka.

The gentle colors of the letterhead, the texture of the ruled lines, the ink blurring

In the package, in addition to groceries such as rice, fruits, and sweets, there was a white envelope. Inside the envelope was a cream-colored letter paper along with my mother’s handmade accessories. I opened the folded paper, thinking it was unusual to receive a handwritten message. It greeted me with a large letter, “Happy Birthday!”

Well, it was my birthday. However, I was so anxious and impatient that I could never feel happy. Perhaps noticing my feelings, my mother’s letter contained the following words in addition to a recent report.
“It is getting colder and colder. I still remember the day you were born, when the sun shone brightly. Deep emotions fill my heart.”

For my mother, it may have been a casual message. However, it became such an important letter that I read it repeatedly every time I felt like losing myself. The letterhead has become tattered over the years. Yet, I still vividly remember each letter, blurring of the ink, the texture of the cream-colored letter paper, and even the color and thickness of the ruled lines.

便箋 ピンクリボン

The letter paper that Takamori Saigo wrote to Kaishuu Katsu was Haibara’s!

Letters with handwritten words have the power to touch people’s hearts. Even if you cannot rush to someone immediately and laugh or cry together, a letter can convey the writer’s body warmth and words. It can be a big presence.
When I choose letter paper, I look for simple, comfortable ones to write on and ones that convey my feelings even if I need more confidence in my handwriting. Haibara’s letterheads match these requirements well.

Haibara’s letter papers have long been loved by many great people and literary figures.
For example, a recently published paper revealed that “Takamori Saigo used Haibara’s letterheads in his letter to Kaishu Katsu. The relationship between the two leading figures of the Meiji Restoration is said to have continued until Saigo died in the Civil War. Haibara’s simple and stylish letter papers may have played an essential role in strengthening the bond between the two men.
Haibara’s letterheads were also favored by many literary figures, including Yakumo Koizumi, Naoya Shiga, Ogai Mori, and, recently, Kuniko Mukoda.

Letter paper NO.1
Letter paper NO.6
Letter paper NO.5
Letter paper NO.9
Letter paper NO.15

The standard Haibara letterhead is the “numbered letter paper,” which can be used for any occasion.

Let me introduce recommended products of Haibara’s currently available letterheads.
First, Haibara’s long-selling “number letter paper” has been loved by many for over 100 years. This name is not an official name but a nickname. Haibara’s standard series of letter paper with a number in the product name is called “number letter paper.”

For example, ” letter paper NO.1″ is made of foreign paper with dark blue ruled lines and has a smart look that goes well with fountain pens and ballpoint pens. Letter paper NO.5 is the same type, with a thick yellow ruled line that creates a soft and bright atmosphere. Letter paper NO.9 is made of washi Japanese paper  from Shikoku with a calm gray ruled line, suitable for writing with a brush or ballpoint pen. The same type of letter paper with retro-style brown ruled lines, Letter paper NO.15, is also available.

The reason for the popularity is that users can choose according to their purposes and preferences: formal occasions such as congratulations and condolences, casual messages to close friends, washi type with good ink smudging effect, and non-blotting foreign paper type.

Letter paper Blue ribbon
Letter paper Pink ribbon

“Blue ribbon” with beautiful appearance and “Diary letterheads” with which you can write as if you were a literary master

Next, I will introduce “Letter paper Pink ribbon” and “Letter paper Blue ribbon,” both of which have a unique style that does not seem typical. Both are vertically-writing letterheads made of washi with brown ruled lines that are easy to use for any message.
The unique feature of this product is that it is not bound. The Pink ribbon has a pink ribbon reminiscent of cherry blossoms wrapped around the outside of each of the 30 sheets of letter paper. It looks like a “mizuhiki” tied around a gold seal. The Blue ribbon is also elegantly dressed in the same pastel blue ribbon. Not only is it easy to write, but the time I spend facing the beautiful letter paper is very comfortable, and I feel like I’m a great writer.

Speaking of feeling like a great writer, I must mention this letterhead. The product’s name is Haibara-made “Diary letterheads” (B5 size) with blue 10-line ruled paper. Kafu Nagai, a writer active from the Meiji to Showa periods, used Haibara-made ruled paper when he wrote “Danjotei-nichijo,” considered the pinnacle of diary literature.

The “Diary letterheads” currently on sale is a reprint of the paper design used by Kafu. The retro indigo color of the letterpress printing is very tasteful. You can write your daily diary as if you were Kafu, or you can use it to write a letter to someone as a letterhead.
One of the staff members told me that some customers make their notebooks by folding Diary letterheads in half, using their favorite chiyogami as a cover, and binding them together.
You can personalize all of Haibara’s letterheads with your name. Using a paper with my name on it will make me more excited and feel like a great writer.

By the way, I gave up my acting training later and found writing interesting. After many twists and turns, I experienced being a newspaper reporter and copywriter, and I am leisurely running a literary business. My mother’s letter to me is still a precious treasure.

diary letterheads (B5 size) with blue 10-line ruled paper

Previous Article

Woodblock Printed Color Border Letter Set: high-quality, beautiful letterhead and envelopes selected by uncompromising adults

Next Article

“Mini letter pad” -The secret of the designs by Yumeji Takehisa, an icon of Taisho Roman (the cultural style of Taisho period) and the effect of handwriting.