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Thursday, March 8, 2012

Wishin' For Washi

I got a lovely letter from a reader who will be visiting Tokyo during Golden Week this spring. She asked me about my favorite places to shop for washi tape and fabric (more on fabric later this week). Funny, I meant to do a post about this before I left Japan. These days you can find washi tape, or Japanese masking tape online and in some stationery shops here in the U.S. I just came across some at Broadway Paper in downtown Milwaukee. But Tokyo is a washi tape shopper's paradise! So here are my favorite spots to shop for washi tape in Tokyo:

East Side Tokyo. Click here to see my post on this super fun store (with directions). It's not far from Asakusa shrine, which is a major tourist destination. They have a great selection of all sorts of zakka: tapes, paper goods, silk flowers and the best selection of rubber stamps you're likely to come across.

Tokyu Hands, click here for some English info. This is a crafts/DIY chain found across Japan. I like their location in Ginza, called Ginza Hands. From there you can check out the giant Muji near Yurakacho station, have a Muji meal and tour a prefab Muji house that was built inside the store. I'll be shopping at Tokyu Hands' Kobe store while I'm there next month.

Loft. Another chain store with locations in Shibuya, the Marunouchi Building near Tokyo Station and more. Click here for a map of their Shibuya location. And here for the Marunouchi/Tokyo Station location.

In the Shin Marunouchi Building (next door to Marunouchi Building) is a stationery shop called Studio Graphic where you can find tapes. Cath Kidston recently opened a shop in the Marunouchi Building. If you like washi tape, you're going to like Cath Kidston. She even has her own line of washi tapes that are super cute. The Marunouchi Building has great restaurants, too. If you get burnt out on Japanese food (it happens) you can try the pizza at the Italian place on the 7th floor of Shin Marunouchi. If you're confused about Shin Marunochi vs. Marunouchi building, just wait until you get to Tokyo station. There are more Marunouchi buildings to add to the confusion. Here's a picture of a little flower shop in the Marunochi Building. Or was it Shin Marunouchi? I'm telling you, it's confusing.
The Marunouchi Buildings at Tokyo Station are a great place to head to after strolling around the gardens of the Imperial Palace (below).
Later this next week, I plan on doing a fabric shopping guide. The problem is, whenever I do these posts I start missing Japan. So that's all for now. sniff sniff.

photos: my own
 
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