Sunday, July 1, 2012

An introduction to kawaii

Some new kawaii flakesWhat is kawaii? This is a question I'm asked all the time! I first fell in love with and started collecting Japanese stationery in 2008. It's unbelievably addictive and just oh so cute! When most people talk about kawaii on Etsy, Swap-bot, or other places online, it's usually a reference to particular brands of Japanese stationery, but it can also be used to describe a very particular aesthetic or style (you'll see what I mean when I start posting example images!) Kawaii designs usually featuring objects with happy, smiling faces. If you're wondering how to pronounce the word "kawaii," it rhymes with Hawaii, and it's actually a Japanese word (かわいい) that means "cute."

Mamegoma Sticker FlakesBrands that are NOT considered kawaii by most collectors include Sanrio, Disney, Diddl, My Little Pony, and Morning Glory. Common kawaii brands include the following:

  • Kamio
  • Crux
  • Q-lia
  • Mind Wave
  • Pool Cool
  • San-X
Order from Kawaii Shop JapanThese brands have tons of different designs, and they retire old characters and introduce new ones all the time. Some of my favorite kawaii themes include kawaii fairy tales, food with faces, and pudding/purin-chan!

I love collecting sticker sacks. These are incredibly cute packages that usually contain 70 die-cut sticker flakes + 1 large sticker! To the left is a photo of some sticker sacks in my collection.

New deco tapesOther popular kawaii stationery to collect are memo pads, which come in 2 sizes (regular and mini), deco tape, letter sets, pens, pencils, and pencil pouches. Memo sheets are cute and functional! You can use them for paper craft projects like scrapbooking or cardmaking, for penpal letters, or decorating your journals and folders. You can also use them as cute little notes to write to your friends or to include in orders that you sell. Deco tape, which is pictured to the right, is another very versatile crafting tool! It can be used for journaling, scrapbooking, or adding an extra cute touch to packages! It's very similar to washi tape or masking tape, and it is usually found in three sizes: mini rolls, medium rolls (which is what you see here), and large rolls.

My Hannari Tofu collection - 6/24/09
My absolute favorite kawaii items to collect are plushies! I was a huge fan of Hannari Tofu (produced by Q-lia/Passport Japan) for a long time, and recently, AMUSE's Arpakasso line have caught my eye :) They're very huggable and they always make me smile when I look at them.

SENT: Swap for Kat (burntbao)

If you're looking to start collecting some kawaii stationery of your own, you can always stop by my shop: Panda Love Shop! I've recently started destashing some of my collection, since I no longer have a lot of time to devote to it, and you can find kawaii stationery mixes, deco tape, and plushies there! For newer designs and a wider selection of my items, some of my favorite kawaii stores are:

Happy kawaii collecting! • ᴗ • 

P.S. Here's a coupon code for 5% off any purchase at my Etsy shop: BLOGGERLOVE2012

No comments:

Post a Comment