When you visit Tokyo Character Street for any characters, or just drop in at Tokyo Station to catch a train, Kabuki-ya Honpo is a must-see to get great souvenirs.
It’s a shop run by Shochiku, a kabuki (= traditional Japanese drama, see wikipedia) production. We can meet many Japanese items in many souvenir shops, but at this shop, anything is directly from real kabuki!
|Shochiku Kabuki-ya Honpo in Tokyo Station|
Tapestries, towels, chopsticks, magnets, kabuki DVDs and wooden workmanship are standard items here. We can see a workman always sitting and working at the corner of the shop.
What’s interesting is that the shop is enthusiastic and positive enough to collaborate with other characters. They often have popular characters in kabuki costumes.
For example, look at this. Snoopy Shop is in Tokyo Character Street and we see Snoopy at Kabuki Shop again!
|A display of kabuki shop items|
So you will see something interesting here, but The Item I Recommend the Most is the following.
It’s Makie stickers.
Makie is one of traditional Japanese crafts. It is a sophisticated technique to put genuine gold, silver and other colors on lacquered bowls, boxes, etc. I don’t need to say how those crafts are definitely beautiful and cool.
But, you see, the problem is that people don’t often buy and use such a TREASURE! Bowls with makies are always kept safe in a showcase in a department store and a museum!!
So makie craft people created stickers, which we can easily put on our iPhone, laptop, glasses, and anything that is not paper, cloth nor things with rough surface. There are various patterns from traditional pictures like cherry blossoms to modern things such as giant pandas, koalas and Hawaiian designs. Also, you can get big stickers like a dragon, carp, etc, if you like.
How to use makie stickers – 3 Steps
1: Remove any water and oil from the thing you want to put makie on.
2: Stick the makies on the thing and rub them by your nails on the transparent film.
3: Remove the film, and you see the makies moved on the thing! They won’t be come off easily!
My digital dictionary is a good example. It is a good friend whenever I write on my blog. I gave presents on it. I put makie stickers on it years ago and they are still on!
|Makie stickers on my digital dictionary|
One sheet costs only several hundreds of yen. I sometimes see makie stickers in other places like Asakusa, but I haven’t seen that Kabuki Shop ran out of them.
How about carrying your memories in Japan on your iPhone?
Visitor Information on Tokyo Character Street
Location: Yaesu North Exit underground floor in Tokyo Station, inside First Avenue Tokyo Station (also called, Tokyo Eki Ichibangai in Japanese)
Opening Hours of the Shops
10:00 – 20:30 every day
(Shop info is based on that in May, 2015.)
Helpful Links for Visitors
- Tokyo Station Official Maps in English by Japan Railway
- First Avenue Tokyo Station Official Floor Guide in English (PDF)
- First Avenue Tokyo Station Official Floor Guide in Chinese (PDF)
- First Avenue Tokyo Station Official Floor Guide in Korean (PDF)
- Hotels near Tokyo Station – Imperial Palace is near Tokyo Station Marunouchi Exits. There are 5-star luxury hotels including Shangri-La Hotel Tokyo, Four Seasons Hotel Tokyo at Marunouchi, and retro & modern The Tokyo Station Hotel.
All About Tokyo Character Street
- All About Tokyo Character Street in Tokyo Station Part 1: Kawaii (Cute) Items
- The Best Japanese Souvenirs at Kabuki Shop – All About Tokyo Character Street in Tokyo Station Part 2
- 5+ Cool Shops of Heroes, Heroines & Machines – All About Tokyo Character Street in Tokyo Station Part 3