Are there any cat lovers in your life?

Good morning everyone,

It looks like the weatherman will finally be able to guess what path Typhoon #5 is going to take, so you might want to catch the weather tonight. Whether it actually passes over Hiroshima or not, it's looking more and more like we'll see rain on Monday and Tuesday. Unfortunately, the rain won't bring cooler temperatures as they are calling for highs of 34C or 35C all next week as well...

When attending a wedding ceremony in Japan, the guests don’t give the newlyweds presents such as toasters or dinner plates. Instead, they give cash, with 30,000 yen being the norm.

As with many things in Japanese culture, there’s a bit of ceremony involved. Crisp, new bills should be used, and the money is placed in a special envelope called a shugibukuro (like the one pictured below) which is used on auspicious occasions. The outer layer isn’t sealed with glue or other adhesives, but instead is held closed by a mizuhiki, an intricately braided cord made of tightly twisted paper.

While shugibukuro always impart a celebratory feeling, if you know a cat lover, they might feel a special joy upon receiving a shugibukuro where the cord is braided not in an abstract pattern, but to form an adorable cat!

The feline shugibukuro is made by Nagano-based mizuhiki workshop Ohashi Tanji, and is unique for more than just its artistic feline appeal. Usually, shugibukuro are made of paper, but Ohashi Tanji’s kitty version is actually a tightly folded towel called a tenugui, which can also be used as a wrapping cloth or for decorative purposes.

Because of the material used, recipients of the cat shugibukuro have a reason to hang onto it for years to come. Oh, and don’t worry, the cords on these envelopes are designed to slide off, so the recipient can remove the monetary gift inside without having to say good-bye to the mizuhiki kitty.

Ohashi Tanji offers the cat shugibukuro through its online store, priced at 864 yen, making it an affordable but extremely memorable way to say congratulations to a friend with a soft spot for cats or even as a gift to yourself.

Just don't bother giving one to your English teacher, he's more of a dog person.

Have a great day!


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