It is believed that the Kamo doll originated when an odd-job man of Kamigamo Shrine in Kyoto started making dolls using fabric tucked into a piece of wood. The history of these dolls is obscure, lacking reliable historical sources.
The special characteristics of the Kamo dolls are their tiny size and the warm smiles on their faces. In the collection of the Tachibana family, 243 Kamo dolls still exist. Such a large number of collections is rarely ever seen, even in Japan. They were probably brought into Yanagawa as souvenirs of Kyoto. The wooden dolls wear doll-sized brocade costumes with the edges tucked into grooves. Particularly, the small-size Kamo dolls are called ‘mame Kamo,’ and ‘mame’ means pea-size. They are self-righting dolls with a tiny weight in the bottom. The smallest is only 5mm in height.