Sunday, December 7, 2008

Ichiban Kan!

Unlike most women I know, I hate shopping. I absolutely abhor going to the malls around the holidays. I despise Walmart, Black Friday and Manufacturer's Outlets. (I do like interesting stores in cute little neighborhoods) I am not one of those women who will take a shopping trip to cure a lousy mood.

My daughters seem to have inherited my distaste for"normal" mall shopping. While they enjoy trips to the mall to buy Bubble Tea, and hang out with their friends, they refuse to venture into the normal teenage uniform retailers such as Abercrombie & Fitch, Hollister, American Eagle and Aeropostale.

Last year we flew out to the San Francisco area to attend my brother's wedding. We encountered the worst weather the area had experienced in recent history. Four full days of rain and wind. The redwoods were off-limits. Our trip to Alcatraz Island was cancelled due to 50 mph wind gusts. We were basically forced to find indoor activities!

To our delight we found Japantown in San Franciso. Japantown is home to three connected indoor mall type shopping centers. In these "centers" the visitor finds a wealth of everything Japanese. There had to be at least 10 competing Sushi restaurants. We found a wonderful bookstore and lots of cute stores. My daughters stocked up on manga, and toys, and all sorts of neat stuff. The best of these stores was Ichiban Kan. Ichiban Kan is similar to a dollar store. Everything was adorable and inexpensive.

My daughter "D" requested a Bento box for Christmas. We saw them at Ichiban Kan. I wasn't about to travel back to the west coast for one so I began a google search. Sure enough, Ichiban Kan has website and I was able to purchase the bento box online! (I think it cost about $2.00) I had so much fun I contined to shop. The largest ticket item was about $3.50. I did my holiday shopping on my laptop and did not spend a huge amount of money! I can handle shopping like this! Check it out at or click on my title.


dive said...

Woohoo! Yet another reason I've got to visit San Francisco.

Ichiban Kan looks fun! And cheap, too!
I usually use:

or the plathora of Japanese shops in Piccadilly in London.

Your daughters are right (as usual): malls are only good for mallratting; I would never shop in one but they're fun places to hang with your cynical friends and poke fun at Joe shopper.

dive said...

Typo hell strikes again.

neetzy said...

Wow Dive,

Thanks for all the links. Now my daughters will want to visit Piccadilly! (It's a little closer than Japan and not much further than San Francisco by air). Oh, and I didn't notice the spelling error (ha ha).

Katherine Mercurio Gotthardt said...

Nothing better than ethnic shopping--far more enticing than Acidcrumbs and Shitz.

If I can't have international shopping (which I usually can't) give me the Salvation Army for some bargain hunting fun!

Chay said...

"D"'s going to love that Bento box! :D; I might have to order some things from Ichiban Kan 8D

neetzy said...


I love it. "Acidcrumbs and Shitz" is a good one! During last year's visit to CA we learned that Hollister is not even near the beach (lol). Thankfully my daughters have learned the value of finding treasures at Salvation Army, Goodwill and the Rescue Mission Economy Store. A good vintage clothing store is nice for the occasional treat but usually too pricey for my pocketbook!

neetzy said...

Hey Chay,

Do you have a bento box?

Poetikat and the Hyggecats said...

Sounds like a great idea! I am so NOT a shopper. I love thrift stores and grocery stores, but detest malls, unless they are empty. I'm not much of a consumer (except of food - then you can count me in!)

I'm off to check out your links and to find out what a bento box is. (I'm so out of the loop!)


Poetikat and the Hyggecats said...

Okay. I got it now. Check out this fun little poem. I think you'll like it:

neetzy said...

Sorry for my spelling errors! I just re-read this. Oops...why don't I ever spellcheck?