Fancy a snack with a side of raw organic cotton? If you dropped by Tokyo Cotton Village’s cafĂ© in K?enji this past January, that’s precisely what you got. From January 23 to 31, the pop-up establishment offered coffee, tea, and pound cake, plus a brief lesson in spinning roving into yarn for ÂĄ1,500 ($13)—extra if you planned on taking the wooden drop spindle home. If the experience had you piqued, the cafĂ© also meted out more advanced workshops, such loom weaving and indigo dyeing. As far as Tokyo Cotton Village founder Takuya Tomizawa is concerned, spinning just might be the new yoga.

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COTTON CLUB

Tokyo Cotton Village has seen a couple of permutations since it debuted in 2008, all in the pursuit of promoting domestically grown, pesticide-free cotton. At one point it even operated a a bar, where patrons could gulp down a cold one while—you guessed it—spinning cotton into yarn.

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It’s a technique even elementary schoolchildren can master, insists Tomizawa. His passion for the activity is born out of his work in conserving kazuwata, a species of indigenous cotton that is in danger of vanishing.

Tokyo Cotton Village maintains a field that cultivates kazuwata. Harvesting workshops, which include an end-of-the-day barbecue, are also available seasonally.

+ Tokyo Cotton Village