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Daiso Adventures

Over the past few months, I’ve had fun checking out the Daiso Japan store near Mitsuwa marketplace in San Jose.  The good side is that most items are $1.50, so when I see something new and cool, it’s hard to resist the temptation to add it to the basket to try it out.

Recent temptations have included

Daiso B5 Grid Notebook

Daiso B5 Grid Notebook

Daiso Grid Notebook - Inside

Daiso Grid Notebook – Inside

This red notebook has paper with a grid design.  I’ve never seen a grid notebook at retail, but I’ve been curious to find out if I’d like it, so I couldn’t resist the temptation of a mere $1.50 for 80 sheets of B5-sized grid goodness (the grid’s dots are at 5mm intervals).  My initial impression is, yes, I like it a lot.

Daiso_blue_notebook

This graph notebook with a translucent blue plastic cover was a no-brainer, also at $1.50 for 60 sheets of A4-sized paper.

Daiso_cute_pencil

My kids love these funky pencils with cute designs and a bunch of tips.  They’re a bargain at $1.00 for a pack of 8.

Daiso A4 Copy Paper

Daiso A4 Copy Paper

A4 paper comes and goes at Daiso, so I jumped at the chance at grabbing several 110-sheet packs for a miserly $1.50 each (A4 paper is double that price at Staples or Amazon, and is stratospherically priced at Kinokuniya/Maido).  Since it’s copy paper, I’ll have to see how does in my inkjet printer.

Daiso_CFL

I might prefer LED light bulbs, but at $0.50 for these 32W, 2100 lumen CFL bulbs, I couldn’t resist picking up a bunch.

The Downside of Daiso

I’ve seen lots of cute and neat things at Daiso over the years (such as brush pens, cute stationery, cute sketchbooks, affordable handy storage boxes, made in Japan dishes, unique egg timers, and more), but it’s kind of like Costco because:

  1. It’s so tempting to add “just one more bargain” that you get surprised at check out time.
  2. Many items are here today, gone tomorrow.  Just of the items I’ve shown, last time the blue notebooks were gone, and the cute pencils have been replaced by boring pencils.  A4 paper has always been hit or miss (sometimes nothing, sometimes only colored paper, sometimes great selection, and so on).
  3. It’s not always a bargain.  Some items aren’t worth a $1.50.  Some items are sold in such small quantities (such as the wire frame storage) that when you add up all the $1.50 items you need, it’s not so cheap.
  4. Inventory can vary a lot store to store.  Daiso has a wide of items, but many of the stores are pretty small, so they get a different assortment of what’s available at the moment.

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