Producer Visit - SHINTO TOWEL, Osaka
Located in Senshu region, south in Osaka prefecture, Shinto Towel is producing cotton gauze towels since early 1900. Takashi Shinto, owner of this family company, is its 5th generation. The towel produced in this region is called Senshu Towel known for high quality gauze towels.
The history of Senshu Towel began in late 1800's. Towel itself has had been already imported from western countries, but at that time people were using them not as towel but rather as shawl as it was warm and also quit expensive. After invention of the original weaving machine for gauze fabric as well as unique Atozarashi after-wash process, This region became successful to produce one of the best towels and to sell them for affordable price. Since then till now, they keep producing high quality towels as well as seeking for new construction technique in order to have even better quality and functionality.
In their production, there are some elder masters working on complicated tasks, one fixing parts for a vintage shuttle loom machine, and another adjusting setting on them. The shuttle loom machines, that were produced during the period of late 1800's and early 1900's, are not newly produced anymore. They need to maintain and fix by themselves and plenty of different parts were stocked in aged shelves. The machines are so old, but still one of the most important machine for them. In Japan like Shinto Towel, there are some textile makers who still use this type of machines, just because it creates the best fabric among new machines, explained Takashi.
What makes Shinto Towel outstanding compared to other towels is not only its quality, high water absorbency, lighteness, speed to dry, but also its flexibility adjusted to different user requirement like size range. Normally Japanese body towel is much smaller than European ones and not many producer don't dear to open new setting to produce wider size, but Shinto Towel challenged to make an extra large for it's signature towel, 2.5-PLY GAUZE TOWEL. This towel is so generous in size, so beautiful in color, and so good feeling in touch.