A "koinobori" carp streamer is hand-painted at the Takagi craft studio. The legendary boy ‘Kintaro’ is riding on the backs of carps as a symbol of wishing for children’s healthy growth, in Sakai, Osaka Prefecture, on Jan. 29. (Video footage by Ryo Kato)

SAKAI, Osaka Prefecture--Handmade “koinobori” carp streamers are hard to come by in this age of mass production, but sales of the traditional Children’s Day decoration are going swimmingly at the Takagi craft studio here.

With two months to go until the national holiday on May 5, sales are now at their peak.

Around 100 units of a set including a red carp, baby carp, and standard multicolored streamer have been produced so far and being sold at department stores and other stores this year.

Takagi’s koinobori are hand-painted, a rare method in Japan today, and their contrasting colors painted in bold brush strokes have won many admirers.

“The legendary boy ‘Kintaro’ is seen riding on the backs of carps, which is the hallmark of Takagi’s carp streamers,” said Takeshi Takada, 63, who is in charge of production.

“I imagine how parents feel, wishing for their children’s good health and growth,” Takada said, describing what inspires the creations. "From the bottom of my heart, I create them using a method unchanged from the Meiji Era (1868-1912).”

In recent years, smaller carp streamers of between 25 cm and 1.5 meters long have become a popular item in home decor.