I've been wanting to make this post for a long while now, but I had to wait until last weekend when we went to Paris. On Saturday, we hit stores mostly, and that's what I'm going to talk about today : my favorite Japanese spots in Paris, some I discovered a long time ago, and some very new to me. I don't claim listing them all, there may be more than that, but these are the ones I've been to, or the ones I've heard of & am longing to go to.
Maybe you're living in France, maybe you're planning a trip to Paris ... whatever the reason, I hope this will be helpful to you.
IKAT is very near to my husband's work place but we used to go even before he started working there. It is a teeny tiny shop, with lots of ceramics (I bought many of them), some affordable & some more special & precious. There are tea ceremony accessories, accessories (pouches & bags), noren (plan to buy one), kimonos, yukata, bento boxes, washi papers, some stationery, some tenugui, zori. You can also find a small selection of fabrics. No website.
Not far from IKAT, you will find Kimonoya. It is a lovely shop with many different items, and was created in 1981. From gorgeous kimonos & yukata, ceramics, teapots (iron or ceramic), chopsticks & chopstick rests, tools for Japanese calligraphy (brushes, ink stones), noren, paper fans, tools for ikebana, and also a stunning collection of high quality silk fabrics (so precious & pricey that I never bought any).
Yodoya is new to me, but it's been there for ten years now. It's a very small shop, and I mean really small, I was scared to break it all with my backpack ! You'll find a handful of objects made in Japan, like Maneki-neko (I bought a tilting one - see photo below), (a very small selection of) fabrics, accessories (pouches, earrings, bags), furoshikis, kimonos & tenugui. There are also a couple of ceramics & tea ceremony accessories. Kokeshi dolls and obi sash. And I also found white sand that I used for making a small zen garden.
I've been to this tiny shop for the first time the last time we've been to Paris. You can find beautiful fabrics (that you will hardly find elsewhere in Paris) and creations made with them, by the owner of the shop. If you live in France, you can order from their website.
This is THE Japanese bookstore in Paris ! It is much pricey but let's be honest, you couldn't find most of the books they offer if they weren't there. I can never leave empty handed. If you plan to go there, plan to spend a lot of time there because (unless you can read Japanese) you're kind of obliged to pick every book out of the shelf to see what it is about ! There is two floors, one with all sorts of books & magazines, and the other with mangas, stationery, masking tapes, origami papers, washi papers, pens and such, and also stamp carving tools. (textile ink pads as well)
If you live in France, you can order from their website.
You won't find any sushi at Kadoya's, so don't go there for that. It is rather small, and is crowded at lunch time (I do think it is preferable to go there in the evening), but so are all the restaurants in that area anyway ! You will find miso soups, edamame beans, gyozas (dumplings), ramens (the specialty of the restaurant), and more. (see their menu, in French, here) There is no dessert there, so think ahead if you need one, you'll have to go elsewhere.
I didn't take any photo of the outside because it was truely late and the photo would have been crappy. But here's something from the inside that caught my attention. I didn't buy any of these (they are green tea / yuzu / plum wheat somen noodles) We bought little sweet things to try, as well as saké, rice vinegar, goyza seasoning, but you can find a large array of vegetables, mushrooms, frozen food & also some ceramics or bento boxes and accessories etc.
If you're in France, you can order online from their website.
There are several MUJI stores in Paris & I must say that it is a great place, even though it's a chain store. We go to the ones (one for clothing & one for the rest !) in the Marais area since it's not far from hubby's work. It's right next to the Jewish area (rue des Rosiers). If you're in France, you can order from their website. (which is pretty handy if you can't make it to Paris !)
I've been once to Cool Japan, which is in the same street as Kadoya & very close to Kioko too. Another special shop where you can find fine objects, but slightly different from the other Japanes shops in Paris. You can find for instance wabofu cloth, which is a special kind of cloth made of handspun organic cotton, and which has some special features for cleaning (face or body). You can find kimonos, yukata, maneki-neko, tenugui and more. No photo because I haven't been there last weekend. If you're in France, you can order from their website.
45 rue Sainte Anne - 75001 Paris
Monday : 1.30PM-7PM / Tuesday to Saturday : 11AM-12.30AM + 1.15PM-7PM
We've never been to Toraya, but we wanted to fo there at long last, last weekend. But with our legendary luck, they're closed until June for renovation works ! Damned ! So, Toraya is a maker of wagashi (tradiotnal Japanese confections), and was founded in the early 16th century in Kyoto. (read more about their history here) The boutique and tearoom have been in Paris since 1980.
10 rue Saint Florentin - 75001 Paris
Monday to Saturday : 10.30AM-7PM
I hope you've enjoyed the little tour, make sure you visit again for more "My Little Japan in Paris" posts !