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Japanese souvenir from Bangkok

Japanese souvenir from Bangkok

Got myself a Japanese souvenir in Bangkok today. Having my eyes on those little kokeshi and cute creature key chains in Japan, I immediately spotted a vinyl box with loads of little key chain figures at one of those Siam malls, between Japanese purikura (sort of beautifying) photo booths and chewy octopus balls. Rabbits, lucky cats, maiko, samurai, princesses, sumo ringers were all on display. A big bright photo slot machine and flashy Japanese writing everywhere – looked like little Tokyo came to Bangkok.

The creature figures were all faceless. Little, neatly shaped bodily characters with big heads but no face. And that was the deal:

You could pick the figure that would eventually wear your face! A personalized key chain. What a crazy idea – so Japanese! I couldn’t decide between a rabbit and a maiko but in the end the maiko figure won, as it reminded me of the apprentice Geisha performance in Kyoto. The figurine looked sweet and funny at the same time, so I chose the kimono dressed miniature.

The face is created through a photo machine that takes your portrait and spits it out in form of a little sticker, that is then applied onto the missing face of the key chain figure. The camera gets facial attributes completely out of proportions, so the outcome is always comic :) Japanese style entertainment all the way through! If Tomek wasn’t stopping me, I would have had my face stuck on every key chain figure.

Gotta love those Japanese inventions. My face on the big headed but tiny maiko looks  hilarious – and that sure is an understatement. I might be back for the rabbit!

The giant key chain and animal variety.


Getting ready for the face shot.


Tata – I am a tiny maiko!

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