Visiting Japan

Japan Videos: Explore Tokyo with Cakes with Faces

Posted on March 28, 2017 by

This is a guest post from Amy of Cakes with Faces.

amy crabtree

I’m Amy, a graphic artist/designer and owner of Cakes with Faces, a brand of cute and colourful t-shirts and gifts. Japan’s one of my favourite places in the world and a big inspiration for my designs. As many times as I go there, there’s always more I want to go back and see! I love the kawaii design style, Harajuku fashion, Japanese food (even though I’m vegetarian which is often difficult!), collecting anime figures and learning the language.

My channel Cakes with Faces on YouTube is all about Japan, with tips and advice for planning your trip, and vlogs from Tokyo, Kyoto and Hiroshima. Lots of people ask me about travelling to Tokyo, so I make videos to share my experiences, and I really hope you find them useful and interesting!

Here’s a selection of my videos about Tokyo and there’s lots more on YouTube with new Japan videos every week – subscribe to catch them!

Shopping in Harajuku
Cute and colourful shops in Harajuku! Exploring Takeshita Street, the Harajuku backstreets, brand shops in Laforet department store and more. So much kawaii fashion and cute things – it’s the best place to go shopping!

How Expensive is Harajuku?
A walk around Harajuku to show you how much cute clothes cost in Takeshita Street and the Harajuku backstreets. While there are pricey brand shops, cute fashion might not be as expensive as you think!

Genki Sushi
Genki Sushi is a popular conveyor belt sushi restaurant in Shibuya. You order on a touchscreen and the sushi zooms to your place on a train – a twist on the usual kaiten sushi style. While it’s not high class restaurant quality sushi, it’s a fun place to eat in Tokyo, cheap and has a great selection of fish and vegetarian options.

Shibamata
Shibamata is an area on the outskirts of Tokyo, with an older feel. You can try lots of Japanese street food and snacks like dango and senbei rice crackers, see beautiful older houses and architecture, visit traditional temples and explore a river and floodplain, just like a setting from an anime!

Ikebukuro and Otome Road
Fun in the arcades in Ikebukuro, with cute gachapon and UFO catchers, as well as the Pokemon Centre in Sunshine City, and Otome Road, which is a smaller version of Akihabara with anime shops aimed at female otaku.

Planning a Trip to Tokyo
My tips and practical advice for planning your holiday to Tokyo, including when to go, how long to go for, where to stay, taking a tour versus travelling independently, how to get around the city and how much cash to take.

Thanks Amy! Make sure to check out the Cakes with Faces YouTube channel for more Japan videos.

Cute Characters

Rilakkuma Bakery

Posted on March 27, 2017 by

Rilakkuma bakery

My favourite places for lunch in Japan are the self-serve bakeries you find at stations where you grab a tray and choose whatever looks good to you from the baskets of pastries, cakes, sandwiches, cookies and more. Team that up with Rilakkuma and I’m in love! This limited edition plush set is pretty astounding – you even get plush tongs.

As always, there’s a cute video introducing the theme. I would definitely visit that food truck.

Rilakkuma bakery

The whole Rilakkuma Bakery range is super cute and I’m pretty sure I need a bread slice pouch.

Rilakkuma bakery

This teapot is really cute too, and useful! You can see all the products in the San-X Shop and hopefully they’ll be more widely available soon. They’re also popping up on eBay if you can afford the shipping.

Things To Make

Kawaii Bird Makes

Posted on March 24, 2017 by

Thanks to the rise in popularity of adorable bird products, like Amuse’s Kotori Tai plushies, it’s thankfully much easier to find cute things to interest us kawaii bird enthusiasts, and DIYs are no exception! Here are a few of my favorite projects for bird lovers to enjoy.

TeacupLion

The baby bird plush pattern by Teacup Lion is a super cute project for those that enjoy sewing. I love that it’s versatile so that you can make a plush of any species you like. You could make an entire aviary if you wanted!

1127handcrafter

1127handcrafter’s needle felt parakeet kit is a delightfully simple project which would be great for needle felt beginners and experts alike. Many needle felt projects can be lengthy endeavors, so I think this one would work well for those that might avoid needle-felting because of the often time-consuming nature of most designs.

I Crochet Things

This free mini amigurumi cockatiel pattern from I Crochet Things serves as even more motivation for me to learn how to crochet! Maybe I have a soft spot for cockatiels because I own one, but this is such an cute project.

An oldie-but-a-goodie, the legendary kawaii crafter Oborochann has a video tutorial on how to make a super cute polymer clay parakeet charm in her awesome signature style. Need I say more?

MagicCrossStitch

What’s more perfect for an approaching summer than a flamingo cross stitch pattern? Granted, spring did just officially begin, but honestly…it’s never too early for summer if it means more flamingos!

Cute Characters

Pokemon Metamons & Ditto Transform

Posted on March 23, 2017 by

pokemon metamons

I love it when Ditto takes over my favourite Pokemon and makes an even cuter version. The first set of characters were adorable and now they’ve expanded the range with even more products.

pokemonstuffs

As always, Japan Stuffs has lots of new things available for pre-order including the new plushies – even Magnemite and Koffing look kawaii with a Ditto face! This whole range is released on Saturday so hurry if you want to reserve anything.

pokemonstuffs

There are lots of transforming products too, like these Pikachu & starter Pokemon pouches that somehow turn into two other designs. How does it work?!?

pokemon center

The US Pokemon Center site should get some of these soon but they already have a big range of Ditto Transform plushies including affordable keyrings at $8.99.

giant ditto plush

Or at the other end of the scale…a giant huggable Ditto! Yours for just $129 with free US shipping.

If you prefer to DIY, check out Polymomo Tea’s new video, which shows you how to make Ditto-ised Oddish, Gloom and Vileplume charms from polymer clay – so cute!

Giveaways

Bento&co $50 Gift Cards Giveaway

Posted on March 22, 2017 by

Time for a new giveaway, this time with Bento&co who sell the most adorable bento boxes and supplies direct from Japan.

Bento&co giveaway

If you’re looking to cute up your lunchtimes, you’ll love this giveaway as TWO lucky winners will receive a $50 USD gift card to spend on anything in store. With a huge range of traditional and kawaii bento boxes and accessories plus rice moulds, kitchenware, cookie cutters and even stationery and snacks, you should have no trouble spending it. You’ll almost be able to imagine you’re having a shopping spree in their amazing Kyoto shop!

bento&co

So cute! To enter the giveaway, visit the Bento&co website and then come back and leave a comment on this blog post telling us Which products would you spend the gift card on if you won? (They don’t need to add up to $50 and you’re allowed to change your mind if you win)

Then use the Rafflecopter widget below to register your entry and open up more chances to win. Confused by Rafflecopter? Here’s a great guide.

PLEASE READ BEFORE ENTERING:

  • NO giveaway accounts allowed (eg. a Twitter account you only use to tweet giveaways)
  • ALL your entries will be disqualified if you break any rule
  • If you are under 16, please check with a parent or guardian before entering.
  • By entering this giveaway, you are agreeing to the Terms and Conditions.
  • This giveaway is open worldwide and shipping is included in the prize.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The giveaway closes on Tuesday 4th April and we’ll pick two winners at random. Good luck!

PS. Don’t forget to check out this year’s Chef Bento contest for a chance to win a trip to Kyoto and more Bento&co prizes.