Chabana, the simple but elegant style of flower arranging for Chanoyu, the Japanese tea ceremony, has deep roots in the more formalized Ikebana style of flower arranging which is firmly seated in both Shintoism and Buddhism. Cha literally means tea and bana is taken from the word hana or flower.

A less formal style of Ikebana arrangement was added to the more stylized rikka arrangement and was called nageire, or thrown in style. This new style had fewer rules and appealed to those who were searching for a more simple and natural look. Early tea masters used the nageire style until it further divided into the seika, pure flower, and chabana, tea flower, styles. The chabana style, with no formal written rules, became the standard style of arrangement for Chanoyu.

Flowers are a reflection of the host’s heart in the Chanoyu gathering. The chabana arrangement is a seasonal expression of flowers placed in a simple vase or basket. The materials for the vases range from bronze to both glazed and unglazed ceramics as well as bamboo, glass and other materials. When arranging chabana the host first selects the flowers and then an appropriate vase. No frogs are used as in Ikebana and the finished arrangement of flowers evokes a feeling similar to what one feels in the natural garden setting. Chabana arrangements are also wonderful outside of the tearoom and can be enjoyed in many settings in ones home.