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There are items in Japan that have been used since time immemorial.

In the modern era, there is a strong Western influence and the younger generation doesn’t use the traditional tools and sundry items as much. However, there are plenty of cute items that allow you to experience traditional Japan.

Lately there are shops in every region popping up that sell Japanese sundries.

Young people are beginning to buy traditional, cute items.

If you come all the way to Japan, these items have become popular among young people and you should buy them as souvenirs to bring back home.


Clasped purse

In Japan, purses that have clasps are called “gamaguchi,” or “toad mouth,” because when it’s open it resembles a toad. Clasped purses have become popular among Japanese young people, and it’s a standard at all Japanese sundry shops. They come in many varieties, including long wallets and coin purses. 




Clasped pouch

Clasped pouches are most often used as makeup cases and accessory holders.

There are plenty of designs, but the most popular are the feminine floral patterns.


Clasped bag

These are big clasped purses that are often used as handbags.



Kinchaku are drawstring bags that have been used since time immemorial. They come in traditional Japanese patterns, and are used in different ways, such as to carry candy or small accessories or bigger ones are used to carry lunchboxes. 



Tabi are the traditional Japanese style of socks that have the split toes. The word comes from the kanji for “foot” and “bag”.

Now they sell easy-to-wear, more modern versions right next to Western-style socks.



It’s one large piece of cloth.

People used to wrap large items, changes of clothing, travel items, or other stuff in this large cloth and carried it as they walked. Now it is often used to wrap gifts.

Furoshiki with cute designs are popular today.


Chirimen Craftsmanship

These are small items made out of Japanese crepe fabric. 

Flowers, dolls, hair pins, broaches, hair ornaments, and other items are all made using this technique.





Now you could say it’s like a hand towel or handkerchief, but people in the past often used it to wipe sweat off their faces and bodies.

Japanese sundry shops sell lots of cutely patterned tenugui.




A sensu is the folding fan that you use when it’s hot. When it’s closed it resembles a stick and is easy to carry.




This is something geared towards women for their personal grooming, a hand mirror that is easy to carry around.

There are many kinds of hand mirrors sold with different patterns.



If you want to know more about souvenirs from Japan that aren’t just accessories check out these articles:

15 Must-Buy Souvenirs from Japan

10 food souvenirs you can only buy in Osaka

Must-buy Food Souvenirs from each Prefectures in Japan: Kanto Region

Must-buy Food Souvenirs from each Prefectures in Japan: Tohoku and Hokkaido

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