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Shoji Screen Information

We have a wide range of beautiful folding screens, from traditonal Paper to bamboo and timber. Idea for dividing off living space, for hiding away computers and televisions or for making informal work areas but with the added bonus of translucent light.

Many of the screens are bespoke made in our own workshops

History of Screens

The earliest surviving folding shoji screens are Chinese. Existing Chinese screens , some of which are paper, date from the eighth century AD, although literary references date as far back as the Zhou dynasty (fourth to third century BC), and depictions of screens occur in Han dynasty tombs (200 BC-200 AD). However, it was in Japan that the screen form evolved into its most celebrated variations. Japanese screen variations include:

·Byobu : folding screen; translates roughly as 'protection from the wind'
(Also referred to in English as ' beoube ' or in French as ' paravent ')

·Tsuitate : single panel entrance screen

·Fusuma : sliding door

·Shoji : the modern term for translucent paper doors or windows

·Tobusuma : wood sliding screen

·Sugido : cedar board



Chinese folding screens , which served originally as partitions painted with serious works, were not intended to be moved around fre­quently. They were often heavy wooden structures hinged with cloth or leather thongs pulled through holes near the edges of the panels. The frame was prominent, and the image development was frequently vertical and confined to the individual panels, creating a pleasing pattern.

Japanese Shoji folding screens, on the other hand, served many purposes, being used for tea ceremonies, as backgrounds for concerts or dances, as enclosures for Buddhist rites, and in outdoor processions. The type of folding varied according to its function. For instance, small two-fold screens were used for tea ceremonies, while large, gold-leaf screens with up to eight folds served as backdrops for dancing. An emphasis on mobility required a structure that would be lightweight and flexible. A lightweight but strong core was produced with a lattice of a stable wood covered with many layers of paper applied in a specific sequence, in the manner of a karibari.


Flexibility was originally achieved by an ingenious system of strong paper hinges integrated in the panel construction, which allowed reversible folding patterns. The paper hinges brought the panels closer together, eliminating the need for intrusive frames separating panels and allowing a horizontal orientation of the picture plane which offered, through manipulation into different configurations, innovative approaches to the physical, psychological and narrative spatial relationships of the panels.

Information from http://www.si.edu/scmre/relact/foldingscreens.htm

Shoji Screen Bespoke Service:

We offer a bespoke service for a select range of our products.

 For a quotation please use the shoji enquiry form

Shoji Screen

The bespoke service includes floor to ceiling sliding Shoji screens, free standing Shoji screens, back illuminated wall mounted screens and back illuminated corner mounted screens.  All products are made to measure using hardwoods and Shoji paper.    The Shoji paper can be laminated for durability and strength and the wood can be stained to your requirements.

 For a quotation please use the shoji enquiry form