Well, Historic Charleston is a lovely place. Amazing architecture and colour. I took about 50 photos of people’s doors and window boxes, especially ones painted in Charleston Green.

I ate BBQ, fried green tomatoes, grits and biscuits and visited Ft. Sumter and generally mooched around while being called ‘m’am’ and enjoying the sun. I also won 3 games of pool – turns out I am a natural. All round, a brilliant trip. Thanks, work!

My final post on Tokyo, and I thought I’d share some of my favourite (non-stationery) sights from the trip. We stayed in Shinjuku, which was a really great area from which to explore the city. Here are just a few of my highlights…

The Ghibli Museum, Mitaka

Ghibli Museum

I can’t recommend this place highly enough; whether you love the Studio Ghibli films or not, this place is magical. I won’t give too much away, but the building itself is worth the price of admission. Book your ticket before you go (info on the museum website). Add in the chance to see an exclusive Ghibli film, and play with animation techniques, this is a fantastic place. Mitaka is a great area for a stroll, and the museum is in a lovely park – with a lake containing the biggest Koi Carp I’ve ever seen.


Sushi, sushi and more sushi


It goes without saying that all the food was amazing. But I couldn’t get enough sushi. From the 7/11, from the food hall at Isetan in Shinjuku (a must-do!), and from various restaurants. Anyone know where I can find sushi this good in London? Please?!

We saw Mt Fuji! Just! We took the train to Hakone for an overnight stay at a traditional ryokan, and after a wash-out on day one where we couldn’t see a foot in front of us, on day two while eating our lunch (sushi, of course) by the lake… this…


We did a lot of walking, which would be my top piece of advice for anyone going to Tokyo. It’s a great city for walking. Here are a few of the things I spotted:

Sake Lamp

Sake Bottle Lamp outside a bar, Shinjuku

Zoo Type

Typography at Ueno Zoo


Bamboo Forest, Kamakura

Park Sign

Sign in Ueno Park


Beautiful coloured roof at shrine in Yoyogi Park


Mushroom packaging

Go! Go now! It’s brilliant.


OK, it says a lot about me that I’ll start my posts on Tokyo with stationery (well, if anyone reading this – are you out there?! – knows me, perhaps it’s a slight surprise I haven’t started with food, but anyway…). I couldn’t get enough of the stationery & accessories, and having got back home, far from Tokyu Hands, I wish I had bought much, much more! But I did find some great stuff, which I thought I’d share.

1. Washi Tape. I will stick it on my bike, shelves, notebooks and anything else that stays still long enough.
2. On the tape theme, there was a huge selection of these decorative seals – I picked this camera design out from among the cupcakes, kawaii animals and other cuteness.
3. Letterpress notepaper set by a Japanese company called Orange Airlines. I can’t find any info on them online, sadly.
4. I loved this illustrated postcard by Japanese illustrator Sayaka Sugiura.
5. Cameras again – this time on a little namecard/business card by Tsutsumu.
6. Everyone in Tokyo seemed to have a bike – and great bike accessories. I found this bike bell from Charly in amongst the cloud and star-shaped bike mirrors and kawaii panniers at Loft. Oh, and ‘Charly’ apparently means ‘bike’ in Japanese!
7. Mount Fuji notepaper by Midori.

And tea? Well, I did manage two weeks without a proper cuppa, and got quite addicted to green tea. So how could I come back without a super-kawaii teapot to make it in? And Tokyu Hands had just the thing!


There are many great blogs out there about how to shop for stationary, kawaii and craft stuff in Tokyo, and I’d recommend the excellent Asking for Trouble and Hello Sandwich, and I wish that the Tokyo Craft Guide from Sake Puppets and Miss Matatabi had been out in time for my trip.

My picks are definitely Tokyu Hands (Shinjuku, Shibuya and Ikebukero branches were all worth a visit), Loft (Shibuya) and Itoya (Ginza). The postcard was one of a few I picked up from a lovely shop in Yanaka called Biscuit.

Next up… food. Oh, and evidence that I did at some stage leave the craft shops and saw some of Tokyo! (^_^)

Shinjuku Station

Shinjuku Gyoen Garden

I’m just back from a great trip to Tokyo, where I ate a lot of sushi, bought a lot of stationary at my new favourite shop, Tokyu Hands, and took a lot of photos of a hazy Mount Fuji. I’m sorting through my photos but will share a few more here once the jetlag wears off and the films come back…