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Kiku Imports Frequently Asked Questions


What does tansu mean?

Although tansu is often used as a general term for Japanese furniture, it actually means chest or container. The broad use of the term tansu is understandable when one considers the wide variety of uses associated with Japanese tansu, including tansu used as money safes and document safes, dressers, wardrobes, shoe cabinets, bedding chests, linen cabinets, cabinets to store objects of the tea ceremony, kitchen cabinets, food cabinets, book shelves and ship's chests.


Are the items in the online store all antiques or are they new?

Most of the tansu were made between 1870 and 1930. Some of them look new because they have been refinished.


Where are the tansu from?

All of our tansu are shipped directly from Japan. We purchase all our merchandise ourselves - we do not use middlemen. This is the reason we can keep our costs reasonable for our clients.


What is the difference between a "tansu" and a "dansu"? 

The terms "tansu" and "dansu" are really the same word. When "tansu" is used together with another word, the "t" becomes a "d", resulting in "dansu".


Are all of the items in the online currently available?

The online store is updated often. This means that almost all of the items are available if they have an 'add to cart' button available. On rare occasions we may have sold an item in our store on the same day as your online purchase. However this is extremely rare and unlikely. We make every effort to update our online store as often as possible to avoid any issues.

What is the condition of the items in the online store?

All of our tansu receive comprehensive refinishing, including repair of hardware, wood and restoration of the wood finish. Most of the tansu are 70-120+ years old, so they all have some patina of wear even after refinishing.

What does Kiku mean?

Kiku is the Japanese word for chrysanthemum - a type of flower found in Japan.

Does Kiku Imports have a store near me?

We currently offer our pieces here on our website only and in our new Warehouse location in San Carlos, CA every Saturday. 


Will I have to pay sales tax? 

Residents of California are required to pay 9.25% sales tax.


Does Kiku Imports sell to antique dealers or designers?

Kiku Imports welcomes wholesale customers. Please contact us directly for more information.