Let's begin with Day One's purchases, all made in Otaru, a coastal town northwest-ish of Sapporo. They are very well known for their glass work and a little less well known for their music boxes. Of course we had to check them both out.
Here is my new music box (jewelry box):
Once the music box purchasing had been finished, we meandered back towards the center of town and checked out a few glass shops along the way. Otaru is known for the glass artisans; they once made the gas lamps in town and glass buoys for the fishing boats. Since neither of those items are much in use any more (well, buoys are, but they are made of different material these days methinks), the artists took to creating all sorts of glassware.
On Day Two, we managed to take a taxi out to a tiny hole-in-the-wall (under the house/in the carpark) kimono shop. Here they work on kimonos and all of their accessories. There were obi, kimono, shoes, bags, pins, and even stripped down kimono fabrics for sale.
I am very happy with these new items. When living in Spain, I usually took tons of photos as our reminder of our travels. It wasn't until just before we left that we finally made some decisions about what we'd like to take home. Now that there are kids involved, I only manage to take a few photos of any quality, so having other items is very nice. Plus, we'll have these things forever...if we can prevent the aforementioned children from ruining them all.
Only time will tell!