i love all things japanese — from sushi to vintage kimonos, and especially graphic design and packaging. i used to spend hours at Kinokuniya bookstore in san francisco’s japantown (i just found out there’s an L.A. location, too!). and i can’t read a word of them — all written in japanese, but i love paumes design books, too. i find the japanese aesthetic to be both simple and elegant, but also somewhat whimsical at times. they seem to have a keen sense of humor, or what some might call kawaii — lovable and cute. there’s a certain contradiction between say, the seriousness of their decor — like japanese tatami beds, paper lanterns and shoji screens which are so spare and practical, and then their packaging design which can be really colorful, playful and fun. regardless, i love it all and would love to visit japan one day. in the meantime, i continue to be inspired by their wonderful culture.