Nobori 幟 colorful advertising in Japan

nobori advertising banners flying high
I have to design some nobori soon so I was doing some research. I realized it is a pretty unique advertising format. A long banner usually made from cotton or a synthetic material displayed at the front of businesses. The long format is ideal for kanji writing because of course, the traditional way to write kanji runs from top to bottom and right to left.

Originally nobori were used as a battlefield marker in feudal Japan. Bright colors and shear numbers of nobori were used as intimidation. Now it has been adopted an advertising medium on the streets of Japan.

a nice design using the length of the nobori to good effect
a kyoto restaurant shop front
In Kyoto this advertising format seems to be popular. Because Kyoto’s heritage has been preserved and it is one of few remaining places you can see traditional buildings in Japan, Kyoto has some strict guidelines in place about advertising on buildings. No bright signs, flashing lights or huge billboards crowd the streets. Sometimes it is hard to even notice a business is open. Nobori can be used to good effect in Kyoto. I will post some more examples of nobori I design soon.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *