Tradition dictates that tatami is placed remembering that the floor has an intimate quality and we are always attached to it. Layouts should be harmonious and beautiful, and it is believed that good luck stems from the proper placement of tatami in the home.
By tradition, tatami was placed according to these rules:
The corners from four tatami mats should never touch.
Avoid a line that cuts all the way through the tatami layout.
Only one half size tatami should be used in a layout.
Here are a few traditional layouts that you can use:
Of course you may place tatami however you like.
Situated outside most tatami rooms is the genkan – an area where you leave your footwear before entering. It is customary to wear nothing on your feet other than socks to prolong the life of the rush grass covering.
When walking across the tatami it is important not to step on the edges – it is a sign of poor manners and discipline, and can even be interpreted as an insult as some tatami border patterns hold special meaning within a family.
When sitting on tatami, fold your legs back and tuck them underneath your thighs. This is called seiza, and demonstrates respect for your friends and family by showing that you are paying attention.
installation and care of tatami
Tatami is simple to use and maintain.
Regularly vacuum your tatami with the grain using a soft brush head.
Tatami is always installed on subflooring – never finishing flooring. Contact us if you have installation questions.
The mats heavy and should be handled by at least two people – full size tatami weighs 60 lbs.
Regular vacuuming of your tatami mat removes small particles that can penetrate the tatami’s tight weave.
Put tatami out in direct sunlight once per season on a warm day. The fresh air rejuvenates the mat and UV naturally disinfects the tatami. A soft pat with a stick releases dust from the mat and it is considered cleansed.
spill and triage
Use a dry cloth to pick up a wet spill. Use a damp cloth to clean a mess. If residue is present gently use a toothbrush to loosen particles.