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Japanese Stationery

Japanese Stationery

Dear fellow stationery lover,
This is a list of online stores that sell Japanese stationery,
as well as Taiwanese and other Asian stationery.


I hope that it provides you with a pleasant interim substitute for visiting Japan
and spending month's salary on
 delightful cards, stickers,
ramen, 
mochi, Totoros and all the splendid things there.

The term “Stationery” includes 
letter paper & envelopes, 
washi tape, stickers, stamps, 
writing pads, memo pads, sticky notes, 
greeting cards, postcards, wrapping paper, 
journals, planners and other magnificent items.


Cute Things from Japan - Akira Kusaka Moderato

Akira Kusaka Memo Pad
"Moderato"


It also includes pens, fountain pens, inks, pencils, markers, erasers, 
dirt specks that beautify your stationery containers, 
organizers, rulers and clips, 
but I won’t be featuring those equally superb items 
since it is my goal in life to fawn over illustration and graphic design 
rather than get any work done.

This page is a work-in-progress (please pardon!).
I hope you enjoy perusing!

- Emmie


Cute Things from Japan - Akira Kusaka - Sound of Forest
Akira Kusaka Letter Set
"Sound of Forest"


First site:
CUTE THINGS FROM JAPAN

Cute Things from Japan - founders Ayako and Junko

Cute Things from Japan
is run by Ayako and Junko, two sisters in Tokyo.
They take occasional field trips to meet stationery makers,
and feature the profiles on their blog


I enjoyed their chat with 
Shinsuke Tanabe of Classiky,
since I love this brand (impeccable curation and design),
which features products by Ten to SenYoko Inoue
kata kata, and Mihoko Seki.  



Cute Things from Japan - Classiky Letterpress Note Cards - Little Garden by Ten to Sen
Classiky x Ten to Sen Letterpress Note Cards
"Little Garden"


Classiky x Ten To Sen Washi Tape
Classiky x Ten To Sen Washi Tape


Ten to Sen's creator, Rieko Oka, is a textile designer based in Hokkaido.


Ten To Sen - Pattern Book From the North
Ten To Sen
"Pattern Book From the North"


Yoko Inoue creates books, posters, and various works
featuring her intelligent collage style.

Classiky x Yoko Inoue Washi Tape
Classiky x Yoko Inoue
“Old Book Washi Tapes” 

I own these washi tapes and am fond of them.
I love the book fonts and her poetic approach to 
design.


The Cute Things site features brands like Hitotoki 
(they produce Kitta - lovely translucent planner stickers that can be repositioned like washi tape),
Eric (a charming rubber stamp artist), 
and Akira Kusaka, a brilliant narrative painter.


Cute Things from Japan - Kitta clear stickers
 
Did Ayako and Junko (or Kitta) sticker these dishes for this photo?
If so . . . impressive!


The Cute Things shop is located in Japan,
but they offer affordable shipping to the U.S., 
and their stationery selection is great.

I'm not sure why I haven't already purchased their entire store.
Oh yes.  Purchases cost money.

Cute Things from Japan - Kitta stickers
Hitotoki
"Kitta Planner Stickers"


Cute Things from Japan - Furukawa Paper Today's Letter Set Match Box
Furukawa Paper
"Today's Letter Set - Match Box"



Paper Plus Cloth - Masao Takahata

Cozyca x Masao Takahata
"Bear Writing Pad"

If you have a moment,

check out Masao Takahata's woodwork with bears.
Delightful!


For U.S. buyers,
orders $100+ ship free. 

Orders $50 - $99 ship for $10,
and orders below $50 ship for $15.


Here is the Cute Things From Japan Instagram.




Next shop:
YOSEKA STATIONERY


Yoseka Stationery is a shop in Greenpoint, Brooklyn
that was originally founded in Taoyuan, Taiwan in 1981. 

Neil Ni (co-proprietor along with his wife, Daisy) 
spent his childhood in his parents’ shop, 
which eventually grew to a seven story stationery wonderland
in Taoyuan’s Zhongli district.

He and Daisy (a software engineer and speech therapist, respectively)
opened Yoseka's stateside location to bring the joys of papers and pens
to (IMHO) stationery-starved North Americans. 

Neil says, “I believe that for me, and all of my friends growing up in Taiwan, our stationery was an extension of ourselves and who we were as students, creators and thinkers. 

I continue to take my stationery very seriously and will always have respect for the power of simple tools and a notebook to organize my thoughts throughout the day.”  

They feature (among other classy items) Taiwanese stationery goods,
including items from playful Yohand Stationery


Yohand Studio
"Fluffy Cloud Dogs tape"


They also carry products from Kyupodo,
a whimsical and elegant line created by Katsuro Sakai,
a chemist who worked with cathode-ray tubes
and took up letterpress printing after retirement.

Kyupodo Dandelion Postcard
Kyupodo Postcard
"Flying Seeds and Sky"

Apparently, chemists excel at many things.

"Kyupodo" refers to 9-point type,
which is the type size commonly used for 
books and newspapers.

Kyupodo - Night on the Galactic Railroad Bookmark
Kyupodo Bookmark
Excerpt from Kenji Miyazawa's "Night on the Galactic Railroad"

Let's ogle this beauteous letterpress setup together.


Kyupodo - Cat C Drink postcard
Kyupodo Postcard
"Neko C Drink"


Sohei Sakai, Katsuro's grandson,
is Kyupodo's current proprietor.

The line includes vintage-inspired designs,
as well as postcards and washi tapes featuring unique fictional settings,
such as Nanairo Coral Town (a shopping district for mermaids),
and Moguro Shopping Street (a shopping area for moles).

Kyupodo Mogura Postcard
Kyupodo Postcard
"Moguro Postman"

Yoseka's site is top-notch, with impressively-written product descriptions
and welcome profiles of the brands and creators.

Their shipping threshold is nice and affordable.

Even though I can't see their green aprons in my shopping cart,
I like that they wear them in the store.  It reminds me of Taiwan.


U.S. orders $40+ ship free.


Orders under $40 ship for $5.


Here is Yoseka Stationery's Instagram.




NICONECO ZAKKAYA

Niconeco Zakkaya

Niconeco Zakkaya is an online shop
and brick and mortar in the East Village, NYC. 

I'm a fan of any shop that focuses on the Japanese term "zakka"
- things that improve your daily life and space,
particularly in the visual/design realm.


Niconeco's founder, 
Siming, lived in Japan for ten years
and is naturally gifted at creating a Zakka atmosphere. 

Niconeco Zakkaya - Yohaku stickers

I love Yohaku,
whose products include lovely glassine sticky notes,
stickers and washi tapes featuring ephemeral designs.


Niconeco Zakkaya - Yohaku glassine sticky note
Yohaku glassine sticky note
"Anohi no Sora"
(that day's sky)


I also enjoy Furukawa Paper,
a brand that produces products using Mino washi paper,
which is admired for its thinness, strength, and beauty.  

Niconeco Zakkaya - Furukawa Paper Tegami Letterset White Flowers
Furukawa Paper Tegami Letter Set
"White Flowers"

I could never deface 
this beautiful green shade 
with my grubby handwriting.


Niconeco Zakkaya - Furukawa Paper Tegami Letterset Rosemary
Furukawa Paper Tegami Letter Set
"Rosemary"

Where are the spiderwebs? 
My rosemary bushes are patterned with them.


Niconeco Zakkaya - Furukawa Paper Tegami Letterset Forest

Furukawa Paper Tegami Letter Set
"Forest"


Mino washi is created from the paper mulberry plant,
from forests in the Gion prefecture. 

Ancient records indicate that washi papermaking

began during the Nara period (710 - 784). 

Hm!  This is the same time I was attending high school.
Why was I unaware of washi back then?


Niconeco Zakkaya - Fried Egg Letter Set

Sadly, this egg letter set is no longer available.
You can fry yourself some eggs, though,
and dump them on top of paper.
It will save on dishwashing time.
Think of how overjoyed your pen pals will be.


U.S. orders $65+ ship free.

Shipping rates for orders under $65
are dependent upon the package weight.
If purchasing anvils, try to buy more than $65 worth.

Here is Niconeco Zakkaya's Instagram.




Little Happy Things - Michikusa Memo Pad
Nuku by NB Co Japan
"Michikusa Memo Pads"


I like the idealized life depicted in stationery illustrations.
These animals do not have to pay the IRS.
Sure, they get eaten every now and then.
But they frolic amongst tulips beforehand.




ETSY SHOPS

 

SOMEDAY SOMEPLACE

(Japan) 

Someday Someplace Etsy Shop - Furukawashiko Many Many Vegetables Letter Set

Furukawashiko Letter Set
"Many Many Vegetables"


Furukawashiko is a fantastic brand
that depicts the gamut of everyday subjects
(same company . . . Furukawa Paper Works / Furukawa Shikō).


Here's another Ten To Sen design:

Someday Someplace Etsy Shop - Classiky x Ten to Sen translucent note cards

Classiky x Ten to Sen Mini Notes
"Message Bird"

 

MIKAN GENERAL STORE 
(U.K.)

Mikan General Store - MU transfer stickers 133 Vidro Jewellery II

[ABRUPT END OF CURRENTLY BRIEF ETSY SECTION]




KINOKUNIYA
(U.S.)

Kinokuniya Store - Seattle

You're probably familiar with the Japanese books mecca that is Kinokuniya.
I think I have drooled when thinking about this store before.

They stock fantastic design reference books
(sometimes by PIE, a favorite publisher),
Taro Gomi books (a joyful and prolific illustrator)
and stellar lifestyle books and mooks (magazine-books). 

Here are some of their stationery offerings.  

Mai Do - Furukawa Paper Bread

They have brick and mortars in
NYC, LA, San Francisco, Chicago,
Seattle, 
San Jose, Portland, Austin, 
Edgewater, Carrollton, Katy, Plano, and Beaverton.
I didn't know that three of those cities existed.


Orders $50+ ship free.

Orders under $50 ship for $8.


Here is their U.S. 
Instagram


Doh!!  Kinokuniya has a supermarket?! 
Here is their supermarket Instagram.

Imagine all the enticing snacks you can mentally eat 
whilst gazing upon stationery.

MAI DO
Mai Do
is a stationery and gift shop
under the Kinokuniya umbrella group,
with locations in the Bay Area and Southern California.

They don't have an online shop, 
but Kinokinuya U.S. sells Mai Do offerings.



MORE INTERNATIONAL SHOPS
 
JOURNAL PAGES 

(Malaysia)

Journal Pages - Furukawashiko Retro Diary Match Box Memorandum Cafe Cat
Furukawashiko
"Retro Diary Match Box Memorandum Cafe Cat"



KATA KATA
(Japan)

kata kata - Takeshi Matsunaga and Chie Takai
Takeshi Matsunaga and Chie Takai,
the talented duo called kata kata,
produce their designs using intricate fabric dyeing processes
called katazome and chusen.  

They sell cards, postcards, washi tape, wrapping paper and other items at their shop.

If you have a moment to read about the katazome and chusen processes,
it will make their work all the more impressive.

U.S. shipping rates depend on your order weight.
It costs 3900 yen (about $27) to mail eight greeting cards.

Postage is a bit pricey (I believe the pandemic has led to limitations with shipping options,
which has forced
 Japanese businesses to ship via more expensive shipping companies),
but the pricing of their products seems very reasonable (cheap, even)
considering that they are handmade with care and skill.
With that said, I just enjoy marveling at their design and colorwork.


UGUISU STORE
(Japan)

Hikaru Komura carefully selects
high-quality artisanal wares for her shop,
Uguisu Store

Uguisu is located in Mashiko,
a country town in the Kantō region of Japan
that is known for pottery.

Her stationery collection can be viewed here.

Uguisu Store - Natsuko Kozue wild rose wrapping paper
Natsuko Kozue wild rose wrapping paper


U.S. shipping rates start at $21

and depend on the weight of your order.




ESLITE

(Taiwan)

Eslite, a chain of delightful lifestyle stores/bookstores,
is a beloved Taiwanese institution. 

Please disregard the impression that their crazy website may give you
(Dearest Eslite, please un-crazy your website).

The founder, Robert Wu, cared deeply about creating a space
that would inspire and feed the public's cultural, creative and intellectual interests.

Their location in Taipei's Xinyi district is open 24 hours. 
A 24-hour-bookstore!!

This would have been my dream in my 20’s, since I was often looking for something to do at 3 a.m.
Think of how much smarter I could pretend to be.

Eslite provides an example of an inspiring shop environment.  
If you happen to visit Taiwan and you like books/stores/stuff, please visit.

Their online shop is in Mandarin.
My English-speaking heathen self can't make sense of it,
but I look forward to using my no foreign transaction fee credit card
at their shops the next time I'm in Taiwan. 

I typed "Stationery" in their search field, and here are the results.

Please pardon my inclusion of a site
that I can't figure out how to order from.
I just love Eslite.



Thank you for thinking about stationery with me!
I hope you enjoyed the delightful work of these talented creators.



(These aren't affiliate links.  Cinar and I just love stationery).


Rummaging Region