My Visit to Japan - 5
. "Shitamachi" translates as down town (thank you Auberginefleur at Japan Now & Then).
Unfortunately, on the day I visited, there were no craftspeople working there (demonstrations of craftmaking by artisans take place on the ground floor every Saturday and Sunday) but I was able to enjoy the showroom of Japanese crafts which is upstairs in this building at 2-22-13 Asakusa, Taito-ku which is a 12 minute walk (or, in my case an hour and a half wander) from the Tokyo-Metro Asakusa Station and is marked on most tourist maps of the Asakusa (a -sock-sa) area. It is down a shopping arcade that looks very unlikely but if you miss it you'll come out at a large set of traffic lights on the main Kototoi Dori so just turn around a try again! Asakusa is a great area to wander aimlessly and one of the best places in Tokyo to put away your map and guidebook and just see what you find.
The museum is open daily between 10am - 8pm and admission is free. There is also a self-selection video player where you can watch films of craftspeople at work. I enjoyed seeing a video of some very detailed glass cutting but of course the commentary was in Japanese.