Unboxing & Review: Zenpop Stationery Pack (Hana Ga Saku)

Zenpop Hobonicho Techo

Today I am thrilled to be able to show you all yet another of Zenpop’s boxes, this time their popular stationery pack! I’ve been interested in this pack for a while but having never bought a stationery pack before, I just wasn’t sure. I’m not fussy about stationery exactly but I’m wary of getting things I don’t like or wouldn’t use and feeling like I’ve wasted my money. A lot more so than when it comes to snacks (because how often do I not like a snack?).

Thankfully this pack didn’t leave me feeling like that at all, in fact I loved everything about it!

What is the Zenpop Stationery Pack?

  • 10 or more Japanese stationery items in every box
  • available as one off purchase or subscription
  • $29.50 for one off pack, savings and bonus items when you take out a subscription
  • Free international shipping (some countries require tracking/insurance fee of $3)

I received the Hana Ga Saku themed pack from March 2018, there are 12 items inside:

Zenpop Stationary Hana Ga Saku Pack(subscribers also got a bonus pack of cute and colourful animal shaped washi stickers)

‘Hana ga saku’ means ‘flowers are blooming’, this theme aims to celebrate the coming of spring with bright, light colours and sweet florals. I think it captures the feeling of spring really well! You guys are lucky I don’t make video reviews because no joke, when I opened the box I spent about 10 minutes looking through all the items alternating between admiring cuteness and yelling ‘it’s so useful!’ to my long suffering partner. He got the message; I love items that are useful, bonus points if they’re cute too!

This pack isn’t available to purchase anymore*, to see the current stationery pack theme and subscription options click here.

Read on for a closer look at what’s inside~


*a selection of past packs are available to buy directly from Zenmarket, this one is available there at the time of publishing but may no longer be when you are reading this. Click here if you want to check!

Hello Kitty Sakura Pencil

This month’s pack contains four writing utensils, my favourite of which is this cute and colourful Hello Kitty Sakura PencilThere was a chance to receive either a pen or a mechanical pencil in one of three designs, I’m glad to have gotten a pencil as not only did I not have one it is an absolute dream to use! I did a quick doodle of Zenpop’s mascot Luna to test it out:

Luna doodle

The chunky size and textured rubber grip make the pencil very comfortable to use, it feels more like a pen than any other mechanical pencil I’ve used. It’s really smooth to sketch with and produces crisp, clean and fine lines. Doesn’t smudge, rubs out easily…really it’s everything I want/need from an everyday pencil. It’s so much more convenient to carry round than a wooden pencil as well, so this will get a lot of use for on the go doodling!

Brush Pen & Kirarich Highlighter

Time for some shiny things! Both of these came in various colours, I got the ZIG Wink of Luna Brush Pen in metallic blue and the Kirarich Glitter Colour Highlighter in yellow. I’ve never used a brush pen before and highlighters are always useful, so I was excited to see both of these!

Brush Pen Uncapped

The lovely clean brush before I squeezed to hard and spurted ink all over my page…whoops! Take care when using this for the first time! (O_O;)

The brush is very soft and takes some getting used to, but even as a complete beginner I could achieve a nice variety of thick and thin lines. The ‘Luna @ Zenpop’ above was one of the first things I wrote using the brush pen (yes my hands are very shaky, shh), more capable hands could easily create some very beautiful lettering with this. The ink is super thick, super pigmented and super shiny. It’s water based and of archival quality. All in all it’s a great quality brush pen, it’s fun to use and it’s and a fantastic way to add a metallic shine to your work, I’m going to practice more with it (and learn to squeeze gently!).

Brush Pen & Highlighter

Swatching these two wasn’t easy as they are both so shiny. My photography skills were not on point. The highlighter is so bright I couldn’t pick up the glitter, oh dear. It’s very sparkly in person and a lot more eye catching than a standard highlighter, great for making really important things stand out. I’d love to get the other colours too someday!

You may not see the glitter but you can see the lovely metallic shine on the ink from the brush pen. You can see how opaque the ink is too 。^‿^。

Flower Pen

The last writing utensil is this adorable Flower Pen. I don’t think you could get a more perfect pen for the hana ga saku theme! It may look like a novelty pen but it writes surprisingly well, not the smoothest but then I don’t tend to use ballpoints much anymore so perhaps it’s just me being out of practice. I love how it brightens up my desk~

Tulips and Daisies

It looks right at home among the garden flowers too! (◠‿◠✿)

Mono 2 way

What use are writing implements without a correction tool? Zenpop have it covered with this MONO 2way two in one eraser and correction tape tool. Apparently this featured in a previous box but I’m glad they included it again because this one really is just. So. Useful! o(≧▽≦)o

There were a few colour options, I’m so happy I got this green one as it’s so bright and cheerful and it goes really well with the green cover on my planner 。^‿^。

Mono 2way eraser

The non-PVC eraser is partially extended inside the packet and it took me longer than it should have to realise it could both extend further and fully retract. I don’t know, I guess was a bit too excited to notice but it’s right there on the packaging ‘roll out eraser’ so I felt a bit silly, haha. (-‸ლ)

It erases pencil lines cleanly and because of the square shape, you can be quite precise with it. Great for pesky little mistakes!

Mono 2way correction tapeThe tape fully covers both black and coloured ink (although you can still see the indent of what I wrote here, I did say I can’t write very well with ballpoints…). I’ve had no problems writing on top of the tape once it’s dry and it hasn’t peeled or flaked off yet. Just what I needed since I haven’t gotten around to buying one of those nifty Frixon erasable pens yet!

You can buy refills for both ends so this useful little tool is officially living with my planner forever. I love it so much and like the Hello Kitty pencil, it’s really convenient for travelling. Maybe Zenpop will include some refills in the months to come?

Washi tape

Moving on from writing implements, we have not one but two rolls of washi tape; on the left Rose Washi Tape and on the right Fuji & Sakura Washi Tape. The latter was one of the items I was most excited about from the box previews and I’m happy to say it’s even more beautiful in real life!

Washi tape rolls

Both tapes are great quality, they have a lovely clean design and bright colours. I’m not sure they match exactly but I think they work well together and they both look great in my planner. I’m seriously having to resist adding the Fuji one to every page, I love it so much!

Zenpop included a fun fact about the kanji for rose (薔薇); it has 32 strokes (yikes!) and apparently even Japanese people struggle to write it. I don’t blame them! (O‸O;)

Memo Pads

There are two memo pads this month; on the left is a B7 sized Non-Skid Memo Pad featuring (as the name implies) a fantastic non slip grip on the back of the pad. On the right is a smaller Ham Egg Hamburger Memo Block, featuring adorable hamsters with fried eggs on their heads. Japan; forever fulfilling my love of cute and useful things!

Memo Pad Grip

This is the bumpy texture that makes the non skid notebook so special, it’s not sticky exactly but it works really well to hold the memo pad in place. Haven’t we all suffered the dismay of trying to jot down a quick note only to accidentally slide the memo pad across the desk in our haste? Well, no more! (੭ˊᵕˋ)੭

The 5mm graph paper is pretty versatile and suitable for pen, pencil whatever you have to hand. It’s the paper I’ve been using throughout this post, in case you’re wondering!

Ham Egg Hamburger Memo

The Ham Egg memo block is one of those ones that you know you’ll barely use because you can’t bring yourself to write on those cute little faces, but I love it. There are two different colourful page designs inside, both featuring hamsters who apparently obsess over junk food as much as I do. Adorable! I’ll use these for the notes I stick around my desk, nothing brings happiness like being surrounded by cute and colourful things! ʕ•͡ᴥ•ʔ

Spring Letter Set

This is the one item in the pack I probably won’t get much use out of (or at least not use as intended); it’s a Spring Letter Set and it comes in one of 6 spring themed designs. In Japan each season is further divided into 6, making a total of 24 in the year, and there is a different letter set available for each of the spring seasons.

I got the Kokuu (穀雨) design, Kokuu being the ‘rain for grain’ season where the spring rains necessary for a good harvest fall and the time is right to sow seeds. I really love the design (if you couldn’t guess from the ‘ame’ in my blog title I love rain!) and the quality is great, but I don’t tend to write letters so I’ll have to think of other ways to use this one. Shouldn’t be too hard to find a use for pretty paper!

Rilakkuma and schedule sticker seals

Sticker time, yay! Cute stickers make me so happy~ ଘ(੭ˊᵕˋ)੭* ੈ✩‧₊˚

This month features a pack of Schedule Seals, useful for highlighting to-do lists or upcoming events, and a pack of Rilakkuma Stickers which have a super cute rainbow glitter through them.

Rilakkuma Stickers

I couldn’t get the glitter to show up very well in the photo (seems I have issues with glitter!) but it’s super sparkly in person. The glitter is inside the sticker rather that stuck on top so it’s not going to fall off everywhere, always a plus! The stickers are slightly transparent and a great size for sticking in my planner. Rilakkuma and friends look so cute enjoying their honey~  (´▽`人)

Schedule Stickers

The schedule seals are really pretty, not quite the right size for the 4mm graph paper in my Hobonichi but they’ll still work. You can peel each block into 7 strips to use them one at a time or mix and match colours/patterns. It’s easy to see what you’ve written underneath and they’re certainly eye catching, I’ll be using them to highlight things I don’t want to forget. You can even reposition them if your schedule changes!


 

If you couldn’t tell, this box has me impressed! My top three favourites have to be the Hello Kitty pencil, the MONO 2way and the Mt Fuji & Sakura washi tape.

I’m glad I went with Zenpop for my first foray into stationery boxes, all the items are of high quality and because I can find a use for everything it feels like great value. I think the spring theme was really well executed, the items work well together and, as always, it feels like Zenpop have put a lot of thought into curating a box with a good variety of items that compliment each other and the overall theme. If you’re interested in Japanese stationery I would highly recommend you try out this box 。^‿^。

~♡ ZenPop kindly provided this box free of charge in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinions on the box contents, the service or anything else♡ ~


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