Tag Archives: merchandise

Japanese Ink Stamps: Not Just For Craft Nerds!

7 Jan

One of the more unusual items that I have a passion for collecting are anime-themed rubber stamps. Unlike stickers, ink stamps last “forever” and can be used again and again on letters, cards and other documents. My obsession originated from swapping letters with my penpal, Vanima. She has quite a talent for papercraft and her letters are always exquisitely (yet tastefully) decorated with glitter, stickers and of course, anime stamps. Inspired by her creativity, I started to build up my own collection of anime character stamps as well in order to make my letters more visually stimulating!


Drawer #1 contains some roller stamps (Kare Kano and Cardcaptor Sakura), plastic-mounted stamps (Inu Yasha gashapon, Prince of Tennis), foam rubber-mounted stamps (Fruits Basket) and wood-mounted stamps (Sentimental Graffiti, Seraphim Call, Naruto, Saiyuuki, Tokimeki Memorial, Wolf’s Rain). There’s also 4 hand-carved stamps which were made by luvmegabyte on deviantArt.


Drawer #2 contains many of my miniature stamps. The little square ones scattered about are San-X Nyan Nyan Nyanko stamps. The cylindrical ones all along the bottom are self-inking Fullmetal Alchemist stamps. There’s also wood-mounted miniature stamps from Gundam Wing, Fushigi Yuugi and Tonari no Totoro. The larger, self-inking Magic Knight Rayearth stamps are very cheaply made and I imagine they were sold as gashapon or at convenience stores. I love them nonetheless. There’s a little group of 3 Marmalade Boy character stamps mounted on cardboard that Vanima gifted to me. I adore them! I imagine they were given as a furoku in a phonebook manga to be mounted on cardboard.


Drawer #3 mostly contains Di Gi Charat stamps, if you can’t tell. There are even more Di Gi Charat stamps that were produced that I really want and cannot find anywhere. (Help me find them?!) I got 8 of them from Anime Gamers’ U.S. store website when it was functional. The top 3 Ah Megami-sama stamps came with a limited edition video game in Japan. I bought them off of my friend Dave since he never used them. Then there’s that creepy Dokodemo Issho cat thing.


Drawer #4 contains a few stamps I feel really lucky to have gotten. I got a good deal on all of the culinary Slayers stamps from someone on LiveJournal who was selling their anime collection. Unfortunately, the set was missing Lina Inverse, so she’s on my list of stamps to find someday. The Tamahome and Miaka roller stamp (which is mounted on top of a mechanical pencil) was acquired on eBay and Totoro was a gift from my boyfriend. The Summon Nights stamps are actually 2 different sets (I should have opened them to photograph!) that I purchased from Animaxis along with the Howl’s Moving Castle set. The Jiji and his GF stamp says “Taihenyoku dekimashita!”, and it is one of many Ghibli stamps I’ve acquired from J-List. (The only anime shop that seems to sell stamps anymore… orz)


Drawer #5 has a Korean Doremi set, a really gorgeous Tonari no Totoro set in a wooden box, Fullmetal Alchemist, Kyou Kara Maoh!, Tsubasa and more Saiyuuki. The Doremi stamps often meld themselves into the bottom of their little box and are very difficult to remove. -_-;


Drawer #6 contains Pokemon and Hello Kitty Rollers, a set of Candidate for Goddess and a number of hand-carved stamps. While these stamps are difficult to show you because of how they are made, they are undoubtedly some of the most beautiful and treasured that I own. I discovered them on eBay one day and I ended up purchasing almost every stamp listed by the seller at the time because I was so impressed with them. I have since made friends with the stamp artist, Yoshito, and I plan to commission him to create some stamps of my favorite characters in the future as well. They are so exquisitely and professionally carved, you would not believe it. The stamps I have here by him are of Belldandy (Ah Megami-sama!), Horo (Spice and Wolf), Konata and Kagami (Lucky Star), Cloud (FFVII) and Sephiroth (FFVII). They are amazing! If you ever wish to have a handmade stamp, I will refer you to Yoshito. He is very happy to have new customers and is a remarkably friendly fellow!


Drawer #7 is the last drawer (for now) and it contains a very old set of Hello Kitty stamps as well as a set of katakana (I love this!) and a kawaii girl themed Western Zodiac set. I’d like to get my mitts on a hiragana set (I know there is one!) but I have yet to find it for sale.

In case you are wondering about the “drawer” thing, my stamps are kept in a very sturdy wooden set of drawers that I purchased a number of years ago at The Container Store for around $40. They are long and deep, and could not be more perfect for storing my collection!

I hope you’ve enjoyed this little look into my rubber stamp world. You can actually find much more detailed descriptions of each stamp, along with translations of the Japanese ones, in my Japanese Stamp Collection gallery on Flickr. Unfortunately, my collecting of anime stamps has slowed to a near halt because of the sheer fact that anime stamps are rarely produced anymore, save for those by Studio Ghibli. While the Ghibli stamps are of remarkable quality, they are also very expensive and continuing to order every set of them would likely take away from the variety in my collection. It seems that from now on, my stamp collecting will end up being limited to searching for rare out of production stamps from the ’90s on eBay and Yahoo Japan auctions.

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Kamijo Eri’s 2010 “Colors” Calendar

25 Dec

Every year during the Christmas season, I go on vacation to Walt Disney World. Being an anime nerd as well as a lifelong Disneyphile, I will tell you that you can spend tons of money in Disney World without ever actually purchasing any items related to Mickey Mouse. In fact, if you’re an otaku or simply a lover of Japanese culture, there is one store in Disney World that you will go crazy in, and it’s called Mitsukoshi. It is located in the Japanese pavilion of EPCOT’s world showcase, and it is one of the largest stores in Disney World not dedicated to character products. This store is actually a “miniature” version of an actual department store chain based in Tokyo, Japan.

Browsing through Mitsukoshi is ridiculously fun, and as any department store should be, it is divided into different sections such as food/dishes, clothing, anime/manga collectables, stationery and more. Every year I manage to spend a lot of money in this store both on myself and on Christmas gifts that are otherwise difficult to get outside of ordering them from Japan. It really is the highlight of my trip to Disney World every single year!

This year, in addition to picking up some rad presents for my friends, I scored a really fantastic calendar that I’ve photographed to share with you all. The artist of said calendar is named 上条衿 (Kamijo Eri) and her website is called digipop. In addition to her calendars, Mitsukoshi sold all kinds of art prints, stickers and postcards with her work. I was immediately attracted to her cool shoujo art style, which is done in vectors.

Opening the box!

What really sold me on this calendar is the fact that it comes in a sleek white 8×10 frame, so that you can display it on your wall the same way you did any framed photograph or artwork. You’re buying the calendar primarily for the art, right? So it is only appropriate to display it that way!

In addition to coming fully framed, the calendar comes with a sturdy black cord to hang the picture with. Handy!  They’ve included everything but the wall to hang it on.

The above image is the cover artwork. Check out the details on those fingernails!

The artwork for January and February is this lovely geisha illustration. I’m liking the mix of the traditional Japanese theme with the modernistic feel of vector art.

The March and April illustration is the piece of art that caught my eye, and the picture that the sample on display calendar had in it. I’m not sure why, but I absolutely love pictures of girls with berries, or even food in general. It makes a sweet girl even sweeter, perhaps? ^_^


May and June get a goth-punk girl illustration. I’m not really into this theme, but I do like this image nonetheless. The girl’s hair is especially cute. Her outfit looks an awful lot like Himamori Amu’s (of Shugo Chara!) doesn’t it?


July and August get my 2nd favorite illustration in the calendar. It could be because my favorite color is purple, which goes wonderfully with black. This image is a great combo of cute and sexy, with frilly lace, butterflies and a little bit of provocative chiffon. :D


September and October get the appropriate color scheme of orange and black, with a sexy wand-wielding witch girl… and a skeleton.


November and December get a beautiful girl in snow, of course! Her rosy cheeks really make this picture feel complete. It’s too adorable! All it needs is a snow bunny.

Just in case you are wondering, this is the back of the framed calendar. There’s two loops for you to tie the enclosed cord to in order to hang the calendar on  wall hooks or nails. You could also buy some picture hanging wire if you’re worried about the cord not being strong enough (although I’m sure it works fine.) One interesting thing to note about the calendar that I didn’t notice until long after I bought it is that the glass actually isn’t glass – it’s hard plastic! You’d never know it just from looking at it, so don’t let it detract you from buying this calendar. It’s absolutely gorgeous and it is a cheaper buy than many Japanese calendars tend to be. Each picture is quality printing on card stock.

You can purchase the “Colors” calendar for $25 USD at Mitsukoshi in Disney World or you can order it from FEWMANY for 1575円 using a deputy service or other means of purchasing products online from Japan. It appears that the artist also attends Anime Expo and San Diego Comic Con, so you may have opportunities to purchase her work at those events in the future if you go to them.

I hope that you enjoyed this look at Kamijo Eri’s calendar for 2010. I do apologize for the quality of my photographs, but they get the job done of showing you what the calendar is like. If you love it as much as I do, please consider buying a copy to support the artist, and don’t forget to visit her website!

I hope that everyone has a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

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