Bookbinders’ must-sees in Tokyo
What are your favourite places to visit in Tokyo?
The city is an amazing place to buy materials, look at book designs and browse bookbinding related stuff.
On this first list are:
• Tokyu Hands
• Parco Book Center & NADiff
(The second list is at the end of this post.)
7 places for bookbinding enthusiasts
1) Tokyu Hands
(Megastores in Shinjuku, Shibuya)
Huge stores in Shinjuku and Shibuya, lots of stuff.
If you are travelling with a group, Tokyu Hands is the best because everyone can go look at whatever that interests them.
Look for “Binding goods”. You will find everything from uniquely Japanese tools such as bamboo finger roller to bookcloth, glue, mull, needles, threads, bookbinding kits… etc.
(Art supply megastore in Shinjuku)
Home to every imaginable art material. It is down the road from Isetan department store.
There is also a smaller branch next to Shinjuku train station.
Beautiful papers from Japan and paper mills from all over the world and lots of stationery at this huge store. Well designed displays for discerning shoppers.
They have a small outpost at Haneda airport.
It’s between Tiffany and Bulgari. Just look out for the red paperclip sign.
(Flagship in Ginza)
A personal favourite! Trusted old name. Very Japanese, very popular, very long history – in business since 1663.
Don’t forget to go upstairs to look at tools and more stuff.
Just a few blocks from Itoya, right at A2 exit of Ginza subway stop.
See my old facebook post here.
(Shop in Asakusa)
A great souvenir shop, and in business since 1857.
Beautiful, wide-ranging paper-based merchandise.
Next to the giant red lantern of the famous Sensoji Temple in Asakusa. Colourful neighbourhood full of souvenir and snacks stands, teeming with tourists.
6) Bookbinding books and bookstores
You can usually find a good selection of bookbinding books at the bigger bookstores, like at Kinokuniya, or Parco Book Center (Basement of Parco Part 1).
Recommended: Anything by Misuzudo, a Japanese publisher with a focus on bookbinding and handmade books. All beautifully put together.
Away from the crowd, NADiff (New Art Diffusion) at Bunkamura arts centre in Shibuya is a fine little artsy book store.
This is a giftwrap shop, but there are interesting things too like book kits, pop-up cards, Japanese papers, and lots of novelty stuff and nice giftwraps suitable for bookbinding.
It’s on the 4th floor of Parco Part 1 shopping mall in Shibuya.
If you can read Japanese, here is a good resource for bookbinders. Ask a local for directions.
This list will grow over time.
I thank Mariko for some excellent before-trip tips.
Do share if you have a favourite place in this amazing city!
Want more? See Part 2 of Bookbinder’s Trail Tokyo, featuring:
• Origami Kaikan
• Tanaka Washi
• Ozu Washi
• Maruzen/World Antiquarian Book Plaza
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