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Archive for the ‘inspirations’ Category

its a small world: tokyo disneyland
in amongst all the shopping and eating we found ourselves with a ‘spare’ day towards the end of our trip – and disneyland just a short train ride away. what to do? we went to disneyland of course!! we got rained on, we queued for ages, we walked our feet to the bone (no seriously, i got the worst mega-blister ever – i think i could see bone).

i was interested to compare tokyo disneyland to the original disneyland in california, and it was largely the same – but different. it was bizarro world disneyland, where just about everything has a slight twist (the haunted mansion takes on a whole new threatening tone when the voice over is in intelligible japanese)! one of the best ‘twists’ though was the ‘small world’ ride. the ride itself was the same, but the exterior and the ‘load in’ were different – might i go so far as to say… better? take a virtual tour through the queuing area and admire the mary blair-inspired murals that set the tone for ‘the happiest cruise’ that ever sailed…

its a small world: tokyo disneyland mural

its a small world: tokyo disneyland mural

its a small world: tokyo disneyland mural

its a small world: tokyo disneyland mural

its a small world: tokyo disneyland

its a small world: tokyo disneyland

its a small world: tokyo disneyland

its a small world: tokyo disneyland

raak: textiles from japan

raak: kyoto

getting lost in a foreign city has its benefits when it turns up little goldmines like raak. this itty bitty boutique was tucked away in the back streets of gion, kyoto – it would’ve been easy to miss, but once we’d found it, there were raak stores popping up on every corner! and just as well, because i was smitten!

raak: textiles from japan
raak was established in 1615 specializing in tenugui, traditional japanese facecloths. the range today covers face cloths, scarves, and furoshiki cloths – to wrap gifts, or fold into bags. their designs are spectacular, some more traditional and simple, and some bright, busy and contemporary!

raak: kyoto store

the smallest soft, lightweight cotton cloths on display

raak: my souvenir
did i mention i picked up some souvenirs? because i did. a lot.

raak: maple design

a spectacular maple design

raak: my dandy scarf!just a little head scarf i picked up – to brighten my wintery days back home!

raak:chairs

a contemporary chair design by raak

rack: hydrangea gauze scarf

hydrangea cotton gauze scarf

raak: hillsiderolling landscape panel

images taken from raak and my shamelessly extensive personal collection of raak products


raak: lady bugs

japanese packaging and promo

 

as you would imagine, shopping in japan is BANANAS. the first day was really tough – we had two weeks ahead of us, but we were seeing so many amazing things already. would we make it home without exceeding baggage limits? would we go broke before we even bought dinner? as time went by we got a little more jaded, but it was still a shoppers paradise! sadly i was too, er, ‘amazonian’ to fit the shoes or clothing. perhaps for the best, financially speaking! but here are a few treasures that made it home with me…*

*not pictured: 900 pairs of socks. japan loves socks!

swimmer/chocoholic tape, vintage stamps from 'pinups' in kitchijoji
 swimmer/chocoholic tape, vintage stamps from ‘pinups’ in kitchijoji

 

flower push-pinsflower push-pins and push-pin hooks!

i’m a big fan of buying fun but practical things while on holiday. i like to be able to use the things frequently, and each time i do, i get that little thrill i like to call “reverse buyers remorse”.

cute memo pad and faux-marimekko letterset from kiddyland

cute memo pad and faux-marimekko letterset from kiddyland

picture puzzle dominoespicture puzzle dominoes

are these for me? or for my son? hmm… both. but mostly for me! don’t worry, he got plenty of presents all to himself.

stickers! pens! memo pad!

 cute stamp stickers! erasable rainbow pens! cram cream memo pad in my favorite design!

 

face cloths

 i came to love these little face cloths really fast! because its so humid a little discreet blotting cloth is essential. and in typical japanese style, even the sweat rags are beautiful. i’m almost looking forward to a hot australian summer to use these.

false lashes and mary quant daisy hair clipfalse lashes and mary quant daisy hair clip

i almost passed out when i saw the mary quant store. i love mary quant and so to own one tiny little mary quant item is really exciting. and can a girl ever have enough falsies? no. so i bought about 12 or varying style. eep!! blame it on the ¥100 store!

scandi treasures from parcoscandi treasures from parco

i found a fab little corner of parco stocked with scandinavian treasures! i thought the elephant bank might help me save up for a trip back to tokyo soon. and the apple dish towel? practical AND chic!

i heart tokyu hands!

tokyu hands was the most mind blowing place of all. i’d heard people reccomend it as a “department store that sells everything”. in my mind “everything” meant carpet, clothes, mattresses, luggage.. y’know. everything. but apparently “everything” means E.V.E.R.Y.T.H.I.N.G. umbrellas, suitcases, wood, fake flowers.. and lots and lots of stuff for crafting, creating, and making with! what colored perspex rod would you like? did you need some bright green leather? hey weren’t you just saying you were running low on silversmithing tools/flocked styrofoam balls/miniatures for your train set? yes. everything. my brain almost fell out and it was difficult to take in. on our first visit we experienced an aftershock, but i’m almost certain it was my mind being blown. so i bought a pom pom maker and some glittery plastic. because i’m pretty sure i’ll need them sooner or later. australia doesn’t have a great range of anything, if you want something you have to search online and sacrifice a kangaroo in hope of them shipping it to you. so this might not sound exciting to you americans and europeans, but it was like candyland to a supply starved australian! if i lived near a tokyu hands i would never ever ever stop making EVERYTHING.

 

 

furoshiki!furoshiki fabric

furoshiki is all about giftwrapping using beautiful fabric – but i’m thinking i might just giftwrap my head with this one!

Photobucket

fab fabric! it would be easy to blow tons of money on fabric in japan – but what am i going to do with it all? nuthin’ that’s what. so i only bought a couple of pieces that i know i’ll put to good use. the fabric above is latex backed and is going to turn into a swim bag for my son.

handmade fabric bentohandmade fabric bento

and lastly, an extra special little present for my son. play-sushi! he also got socks, some crazy bath salts that turned his bath chartreuse, some candies with hello kitty’s face in them, and a totoro all of his own.

i can’t wait to show you one more special purchase next week – in a post all of its own! ooh

plastic bag from the swimmer store
the roof at kiyomizudera
face cloths for sale in kyoto
candystripe staircase in the omotesando camper store
hand painted silk kimono seen in nippori
saki cup pincushions
rope at kiyomizudera
cintia's kimono
the roof at kiyomizudera
candies seen in kyoto
the roof at kiyomizudera
the roof at nijo castle
tiled wall in kyoto
paper cranes seen at a shrine in gion, kyoto
shrine stickers

some inspiring colors and textures seen in japan.

anne laddon is a fellow color junkie! she’s worked for over 30 years as a graphic designer, poster designer, and painter, but my favorites are her limited edition serigraphs. i believe these date from the mid 70s, during her time at the torpedo factory art center in alexandria, virginia. check out all of her work here, but for starters dig these fabulous pop style works below!

Brownie Hawkeye

brownie hawkeye

 

Sure Shot & Exposed

Sure Shot & Exposed

My Cycle & Red Writer

 

La Comida Mexicana

La Comida Mexicana


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