Japanese Pressed Wood Coaster

Beverage coaster crafted from Ayous wood from West Africa, notable for its prominent and regular grain pattern. Pressed and molded plywood construction with exposed edges. Made in Japan since the 1950s. (more info)

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  • Japanese Pressed Wood Coaster - Kaufmann Mercantile1
  • Japanese Pressed Wood Coaster - Kaufmann Mercantile2
  • Japanese Pressed Wood Coaster - Kaufmann Mercantile3
  • Japanese Pressed Wood Coaster - Kaufmann Mercantile4
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Japanese Pressed Wood Coaster - Kaufmann Mercantile

Protect your coffee table and other furniture with these natural wood coasters. The seamless, molded plywood construction won’t scratch delicate surfaces, while the lipped edges prevent condensation from reaching your untreated wood or stone.

The coaster is made from Ayous (also called obeche, wawa or samba wood) of West Africa, a material known for its light color and prominent grain ribbons, and popular for fabricating guitars and picture frames.

Use & Care

The coaster is designed for coffee, tea and other beverages. If a cold drink is set upon the coaster, be sure to wipe off any condensation from the coaster before storing away in order to protect the wood surface from warping. Conditioners and oils are not recommended. Avoid direct sunlight and heat. 

Production & Design

Isamu Saito began working with molded plywood while producing fuel tanks for the Japanese army during the World War II metal shortage. Taking this knowledge, he founded his own woodworking business, fabricating small home accessories out of molded plywood that he sold off the back of his bicycle.

To produce the molded plywood products, a raw log is peeled to achieve thin sheets of wood. The sheets are dyed and stacked to create unique patterns and colors, then glued and pressed into a thicker, stacked plywood. The plywood is pressed into a metal mold, which is heated to 212 °F (100 °C) for about 20 minutes, then trimmed.

Isamu Saito’s two grandsons run the business today, and they continue to create the products that their grandfather originated, as well as expanding the catalogue to include new items. The Saito family uses light molded plywood to create fluid and unique curves, which wouldn't be possible with solid wood.  


6.25 inches diameter (15.9 cm)

Teak (Ayous)

Made in

Key Points
- Raised edges keeps condensation from leaking and protects untreated surfaces
- Seamless molded plywood construction safe to place upon delicate furniture
- Made from Ayous wood, notable for its prominent, vertical grain pattern
- Made by a family business in operation in Japan since the 1950s
  • USA
  • Free shipping in the USA for orders $150+
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  • 90 days on all unused items.
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