Tokyo Shopping on a Budget

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It seems there are restaurants and shops at every turn in Tokyo. If you don’t want to eat your way through the city, you can easily shop it. On our first visit to Japan, I was floored by Tokyo’s luxury shopping. It’s extremely easy to find any designer, or high end (insert anything) here, that you may be looking for. On vacation, it’s great, you can treat yourself, but that sort of shopping isn’t sustainable long term.

Fast forward to settling in here and decorating our place. We sent a lot over from back home, but this space is totally different, and I’m feeling a whole different design vibe. Even if I could, I don’t think I’d be one to outfit my entire home in designer decor. I needed a Home Goods, a Target, a Goodwill… a place for all the extras you might get sick of in a few months and want to change. I’ve found a few great shops that marry quality, style and price in just the right way for me. Even if you’re not going to live in Tokyo these stores are all worth a visit for unique finds to remind you of your Japan trip.

img_2963Flying Tiger Copenhagen

Before even walking in, I knew I was going to love this store. It houses a variety of treasures for anyone, of any age. The maze like set up ensures you don’t miss anything and the stock is constantly changing. From novelty items, to crafts for kids, to small decor items, Flying Tiger has a unique selection at a great price point. The only items I’ve had quality issues with are their plastic cups, so really not much to complain about!  If you go in with your kids, be warned they will find at least five things they just can not leave without. Although the store isn’t unique to Japan (big in Europe), there is only one location in the US, which is in New York.

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Lounge by FrancFranc

I saw this store on our first visit here, loved it, but didn’t actually go in until we moved over. Now, I go once a month. It just calls to me with it’s floral wall art and two stories full of home decor. The first floor has everyday items for the kitchen and bath plus an ever changing selection of tea cups, plates, and assorted trinkets. You will want one of everything just because it’s all so cute and affordable. The upper level is great too, and houses their furniture and bedding collection. The throw pillow selection is seriously amazing, if you need throw pillows, this is your place. There is also an adorable cafe upstairs where you can grab coffee to go or to enjoy in store. Unique to Japan and China, this shop is definitely one to stop at.

fullsizerender-6Natural Kitchen 

I found this store by chance on the day we visited the Sky Tree. It is located right across from a Starbucks and I knew I had to go in immediately. This store is all about cute, crafty items. It’s sort of like a very miniature Michael’s with lots of DIY ideas, home decor and baking utensils. Everything they have is just adorable and affordable. Plus, it’s unique to Japan which makes it exciting as well. For visitors, I don’t recommend going out of your way for this but if you see one, definitely stop in.

 

img_3341UNU Farmer’s Market 

This year round market at the United Nations University has quickly become one of my favorite weekend activities. Just a short walk from Omotesando Station, you can find fresh, local food plus coffee, wine and beer. In addition to the food aspect, there is also an entire goods market as well. Vendors rotate depending upon the theme of the week. Regardless of the theme, it’s a great way to spend a Saturday morning while supporting local business. The market isn’t overly crowded, is stroller friendly, and as an added bonus, many of the vendors speak English.

 

 

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