Almost all Japanese houses have a name plate posted outside the front door, or on a wall/fence at the front gate. Japanese last names usually consist of one to three kanji letters (Chinese characters). Most name plates are made from stone, ceramic tile, or metal as they last longer. Wood is used occasionally, but it will eventually weather if not looked after.
I carved this sign for someone named Saito (read from the top to bottom).
|"Saito" name plate, hand carved from katsura wood - 8 x 15 cm|