Kinto (tea cloth container) (巾筒)
Kinto is a utensil used in the art of Sado (Japanese tea ceremony using Matcha [green powdered tea]) or Senchado (Japanese tea ceremony using Sencha [brewed green tea]), as a container for chakin (tea cloth).
It is also called 'chakin-zutsu.'
Kinto in the art of Sado
In Sado, kinto is used only in chabako-demae (a outdoor tea ceremony using a chest containing all tea utensils) and is not used in an indoor tea ceremony.
Generally, kinto and furidashi (a container for small sweets) which is put together in the tea chest constitute a combination. Most kinto are made of ceramic. Herein below, the manner of using kinto is briefly explained according to manners of Urasenke school in which chabako-demae is institutional.
After folded and wringed dry, chakin is placed into kinto with its selvage up properly according to the manner, and the kinto is placed in the chest, at the position which is slightly right from the center and diagonally right behind the tea bowl. Upon pouring hot water into the tea bowl before the first chasentoshi (a step of stirring powdered tea and hot water with a tea whisk), the kinto containing the chakin in it is taken out of the tea chest and the chakin is taken out of the kinto, and then only the kinto is placed back in the chest. To pack up the chakin back into the chest, the chakin, held in the right hand, is pressed against the body of the kinto and rolled cylindrically while the kinto is held in the left hand. The rolled chakin is placed back into the kinto and the kinto is again placed back in the chest at the original position.
Kinto used in the art of Senchado
In Senchado, kinto is used in all styles of tea ceremonies.
Kinto containers having a lid are called 'kingo' or 'kinkan,' and those having a dish-like form are called 'kinsho.'
In the some schools, it is called 'kingo.'
Many kinto containers are made of ceramic while some are made of metal, lacquer ware or precious stone. And, some schools use two-tiered types of kinto (to use two chakin cloths).
Also, in Senchado, another chakin, relatively larger in size, is separately prepared for the purpose of wiping the tray, and the container to put this kind of chakin in is often called 'bonkinire' to be distinguished from kinto.