Equipment for a Sumidemae Charcoal Procedure

Haboki (羽箒) (feather brush) When the Kama is removed from the sunken fire pit (Ro), the habouki haboki feather brush for charcoal procedurewooden rim of the fire pit is ritually cleaned with this feather brush before beginning to re-arrange and add more charcoal to the fire. After charcoal and incense have been added, again the rim will be cleaned to make sure there is no ash nor other dust left behind. When picking the Habouki up, the end of the brush will be shortly touched to indicate its higher ranking than other charcoal procedure tools.

Two kinds of feather brushes are used. In winter the left side of the feather is wider than the right side. The Habouki used in summer is wider on the right side. Feathers of an eagle and a crane are most commonly used.

Hibashi ( 火箸 )(long metal chopsticks) The Hibashi are used to transfer hibashicharcoal from the Sumitori to the Ro or Furo. These chopsticks are made from some iron because they are used to pick up burning charcoal in the fire pit as well.

For the Furo in summer and the Ro in winter time, the Hibashi chopstick vary slightly in that the ones used in winter have half of the top part covered with wood. The wood used is usually that of a Mulberry tree.

Hai (灰) (ash) : A thick layer of ash is placed under the Sumi (charcoal). hai ashDuring the summer this layer of ash is carefully shaped and smoothened out with specially shaped spoons called Haioshi according to the style of tea ceremony. A Maekawarake is placed in the front area to prevent guests from seeing the charcoal and stop sparks from damaging the (expensive) Kimono. In order to beautifully smoothen the ash, is has to be slightly moist. Also the ash used during Sumidemae is a little moist, but is still able to smoothly slide off the Haisaji spoon.

Haisaji (灰匙) (ash spoon/ scoop) : Ash added to the Ro during haisaji ash spoon for sumidemaeSumidemae, is scooped from a bowl called a Haiki with the Haisaji. The Haisaji is placed in the Haiki bowl which has ash in it. With the Kama removed and placed on the Kamashiki, the ash is scooped into the Ro using the Haisaji. There are four ritual strokes made in the fire pit (Omotesenke style) before the charcoal is added. It takes lots of practice to have the ash slide off the Haisashi evenly from start to end.


Kamashiki ( 釜敷 ) (kettle coaster) The Kamashiki is used to place under the kamashikiKama during Sumidemae when the Kama is removed from the Ro or Furo. The Kamashiki can be made of various materials such as rattan which is woven into a flat round coaster. The Kamashiki has to be made of material which is not too rough because it has to slide over the Tatami. It is placed in the Sumitori with the top facing down so that the charcoal dust doesn't stain the Tatami floor.

Kan (鐶) (rings to move the Kama) : Used to lift and move the Kama from the kanRo or Furo, the Kan are made of iron or copper. These rings are brought into the room when performing Sumidemae. They are either hung on the end if the Hibashi or on the handle of the Sumitori charcoal container. Good hand coordination is needed to syncronize the movements of left and right hands to stick the ring through the tiny holes of the Kama and turning them clockwise.

Kou ( 香 ) (incense) : During the tea ceremony two kinds of insence are used. In the warmer seasons when the Furo is out we use Kouboku aromatic wood. When the Ro is used in colder seasons we use tiny balls of Neriko which is blended insence. There usually are three pieces of Kou in the Kougou. One is placed near the fire, one is paced a little further from the fire so that it will burn later in the tea ceremony, and the last one is left in the Kougou for the guests to appreciate during Haiken.

Kogo / Kougou (香合) (Incense container) : Small ceramic or wooden container used to hold a few kogo kougou small incense container pieces of incense. incense can either be Neriko or Kouboku. During Sumidemae the Kogo is brought into the room together with other utensils and Sumi in the Sumitori charcoal container. A Kogo can be made in many shapes and forms. From simple round to cherry blossom petal shape, an octagon, various animal shapes, moon shapes, etc. Incense from the Kogo is placed in the charcoal fire to create a nice smell as the Sumi gets hotter and hotter. Usually there are about three pieces in the Kogo incense container but only two are placed in the fire, one near the fire and a second one more distant from the fire to start burning later and have a continuous fragrance in the Chashitsu. To view more shapes of the Kogo please follow this link : Kogo

Sumi ( 炭 ) (charcoal) : Sumi is an essential part of the tea ceremony. During Sumidmae, various sizes of Sumi are used. A big round one called Douzumi is placed to support the following (smaller) pieces. Next Sumi pieces are thinner and are layed on the Douzumi.

douzumi marugitcho marakuda
tenzumi wadou warikuda
warugotchosumi

Sumitori (炭取 ) (charcoal container): The Charcoal container contains all charcoal container sumitoriequipment needed to re-new the fire under the Kama. The container is placed next to the Ro (sunken hearth) in winter preparation. Utensils are taken from the box and placed for easy use. In the container are various sizes of charcoal from big to small, round and half-cut and two Edasumi. There is one feather (Haboki), two metal chopsticks (Hibashi), Two rings to move the kettle (Kan), a kettle coaster (Kamashiki), and an insence container (Kougou).


Edasumi ( 枝炭 ) (white colored branches)

Charcoal procedure Expressions Glossary

Gozumi ( 後炭 ) (second of two procedures to add charcoal to the fire) : Gozumi is performed after the guests are served with Koicha (thick tea) during a chakai (tea ceremony with meal). This procedure is performed with the guests present so that they can come closer and see how the host places the Sumi (charcoal). As is explained in Sumidemae, this procedure for adding charcoal to the fire is only different in that after the Kama (iron kettle) is returned to its place, the host will repleninsh the mizusashi (fresh water retainer). this is because the guests were just served cups of green tea, so the used amount of water needs to be returned for the final preparation of usucha (thin tea).

Shozumi ( 正炭 ) (first of two procedures to add charcoal to the fire) : This procedure for adding charcoal to the fire will be performed before the guests recieve their meal. By the time the guests are enjoying their meal the water in the kama will boil and provide a soothing atmosphere.

Sumi-demae ( 炭点前 ) (procedure for adding charcoal to the fire) : Hot water for tea is heated in a kettle (kama). Under the kettle is a charcoal (sumi) fire. After some time into the ceremony the charcoal might burn out and become weaker. In this case the host will remove the kettle from its place and re-new the charcoal under it. With the guests still in the room,this requires a ritual procedure, the so-called "sumi-demae". Most utensils and the charcoal is brought into the room in a box called sumitori. A bowl or container containing moist ash is brought into the room separately. After the fire is re-lit, the chief guest (shoukyaku) can ask for viewing (haiken) some of the utensils.