Design Festa – afterwards

This is gonna be a long one…

Saturday I went to Design Festa at 10am to volunteer. I had to leave my house at 8am to get there on time. After Design Festa finished on Saturday at 7pm, I left to go to Shibuya to meet up with some friends. From there, we went to a club because one of our friends was performing…

We left the club in time to catch the first train, which was about 4am. I got home at 6am, showered, and finally went to sleep. I woke up at 8am and headed out again to Tokyo Big Site to volunteer at Design Festa. Went to sleep at like 12, and got up at 8 to go to work the next day.

That was nuts… but I’m alive. Maybe sleep isn’t necessary afterall…

Amazingly enough though. I am up on Sunday night at midnight preparing parts of this entry… Design Festa (new link) was very exciting. Even though I was physically extremely tired, mentally I was wide awake throughout the entire event. Never have I see -so many- interesting individuals in one place in my entire life.

I was able to talk to a lot of people, and see a lot of crazy creations that the participants had on display.

This guy works as a woodsmith (木材関係), and has been to DesignFesta a number of times. He has his ‘korokoro’ series, which consists of different devices such as this, that go round and round. This was great, you climb in, and he grabs your feet and spins you around “giant swing” style. The outside rotates around you, so you don’t actually go upside down.

There were lots of clothes designers at the event as well. There was a booth called Bag Art. This backpack is made of green colored -leather-. It is actually functional as well. One of the most amazing creations I have ever seen. There is only one though, and it’s not for sale. The other bag has lots of fish heads attached ‘iwashi’. It is just gross. You see it in the background of the green bag picture as well.

Doesn’t that green bag kinda remind you of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles? No? Just me? Hrm…

There was also an illustrator who does cute niku-man pics. Another guy who calls himself Mr. Mint came all the way from Thailand just for this event. Here is another pretty cool Illustrator. There was so much stuff, and so many name cards were passed out… it’s nuts. Really nuts.

At the end some dudes trashed a car artistically. The sound was impressive too.

Take time to check out Design Festa’s site. They have better pictures than I do up for sure. If you’re in Tokyo, stop by their building in Harajuku. Good stuff, good people, good fun!

I first heard about DesignFesta on greggman’s site btw.



DesignFesta is coming up this weekend!

I’m going, and I’m going to be a volunteer! The event takes place at Tokyo Big Site, I hear it’s about an hour away from Shibuya… not sure though.

Actually. The first time I saw that Big Site webpage was, just now. In fact, I don’t even know where the heck it is… I’ll figure that out later.

Anyway. DesignFesta has an office in Harajuku (near bottom of page). Their office is really cool. The building looks like a magical rainbow trash heap of joy and laughter. If you can imagine what that would look like…

Their building in Harajuku is about 3 or 4 floors, with various exhibition rooms displaying random art submited by volunteers. The art on display is usually pretty unique amateur stuff, and it changes frequently, so it is very interesting.

To get to the office, check the map on their webpage, hehe. Or get to Harajuku, walk all the way down Takeshita doori, cross the street, keep going straight, and turn left at the shoe store. You can’t miss it.

Maybe I’ll post pictures from the event after I get back. Maybe. I always say I’m gonna post pictures… but I never do…

I still got pics from Okutamako that I need to post…



No pics again? I’ll get some up soon…







注意する一つのポイント: If you go to Milk. Bring a gas mask. It’s SO FREAKIN SMOKEY in there. 慣れるまではきつい。目も痛くなるし!>_












As many of you heard on the discussion board, I actually ended up going to the TokyoFriends party.

Originally, I was seriously not planning to go. When I first heard about the party, I was completely uninterested. I tend to negatively prejudge anything that uses ‘foreigners’ as selling point.

This seemed to be one of those events that Japanese people attend in order to meet ‘foreigners’ in a safe environment. People who are hesitant to initiate a conversation with anyone of the foreigners walking through Tokyo everyday, can attend events like this in order to make foreign friends.

I ended up going to the party because the night before, one of my friends mentioned that one of his other friends was going to some kind of ‘international party’ on Sunday night. Since my friend was going, I decided to check it out.

I eventually found out that it was the party that my friend was talking about. I checked their website for details, and noticed they were looking for volunteers. I ended up running the ‘uketsuke’ place, taking peoples names and selling them their tickets to the party. For that labor, I got to attend the party for free! Bonus. The usual party fee is listed on their website.

If you offer to volunteer, entrance will be free, and you can help with the front desk, the clean-up, the initial setup, and other tasks that need to get done during the event. After the event is over, the organizers usually try to treat the
volunteers to a night out drinking or something. Of the eight or so volunteers that night, only about three of them had ever attended the event before.

There must have been at least 150 guests at the party. It was rather amazing. There was a pretty good mix of Japanese, and ‘foreigners’ as well. The Japanese ranged everywhere from college students, to ‘salarymen’. The foreigners were as equally diverse, with students studying abroad, business professionals, and even military types. Now that I think about it, I don’t remember seeing any foreign women at the event.

The food was lacking, some cheap gyoza, some KFC, some meat and potato dishes, and some pizza were available in limited quantities. The drinks were plentiful however. The atmosphere was fun, and really, this party is a good chance to make some friends if you are living in the Tokyo area. During the party lots of the Japanese will insist on speaking English to you, even if you can speak Japanese, as many really have come to the event to practice their English.

The club is run by a dedicated bunch of young people, and tends to have events about twice a month it seems. Their website is always up to date with the date for the next party.

If you happen to be free on a night of one of their parties, I suggest you give it a shot.