Hobonichi Techo Guide


I thought a review/general guide for the Hobonichi Techo was in order, as by the look of my blog I clearly love using it, and I wanted to review all the ‘features’ of the journal, so anyone considering getting one could weigh up the options!

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littlemiss-smiley asked:

Can you please explain to me how to buy a hobonichi I'm very confused 😂



I know they’re not very clear on the website! You need to buy the black hobonichi book, then also chose a cover separately. You won’t automatically get the diary included if you just buy a cover. I have the skyfull blue mix cover (http://www.1101.com/store/techo/2014/planner/detail_cover/c_mp_skyfulblue.html), so I added that to my basket, then I also added the black book after (http://www.1101.com/store/techo/2015/planner/index.html). Hope this helped! :D x


crosswitch asked:

want to ask if hobonichi take paypal? ;;v; since i only have paypal but no credit card..i really want to buy one o<-< thanks for the help in advance!


No, unfortunately the store system can only take credit cards. But maybe you can look into a prepaid credit card and check which companies will let you use them overseas, since the charge needs to be allowed to come in from Japan.

The other option is what people often do to save on shipping—go in on a group order and then you could just PayPal your friend for your half of the order.


bybystarlight: Paypal has a debit card that pulls money from your balance (or back up fund account). Using it works just fine with the Hobonichi store.



You can merge it to your current order if you placed one, but that means your entire order won’t ship until the last item is ready—and that means late November once the Onett cover is available. The planner book doesn’t technically start until December 24th, so that’s up to you if you want to place a separate order for the cover!


Orders open for the 2015 Hobonichi Techo on Sundaaaay!

I started using these last year when the English ones started coming out, and I love it.  The first year was an experiment, and I almost didn’t get one last year.  With a cover, they’re ridiculously expensive, but I did keep up with it all through 2013.  Now I don’t mind the expense, because I use it so much for work that I’d lose my shit without it.

But they always have such a nice selection of covers.  I love that you can pay anywhere between $13 and, if I’m not mistaken, $443.  I want to see the ballin’ businessman rolling around with $470 worth of arty daily planner.

So!  Here are the covers that caught my eye.  The bottom one is a new, and very cheap, silicon cover.  I can vet that Japanese silicon accessories are bizarrely tough and very easy to clean.  I’ve been using a p&g design wallet most of the year, and it’s indestructible.  So this would be super-durable, but I tend to stuff my cover with things (flags, sticky tabs, a special techo calculator, tiny scissors, stamps, two different wee notebooks, and the photo wallet), so this doesn’t have enough pockets, and I need the butterfly closure to keep it closed. Especially after 6+ months of stuffing business cards and notes between the pages.

2nd from bottom is faux rabbit fur.  I was tempted by the zipper designs last year, and I suspect this would be a smidge more roomy, which I need.  But not only would I creep out everyone who saw it, I suspect this would be soiled within weeks.  And the zipper might be cumbersome.  I like flipping mine open fast.

3rd from bottom is the Onett cover, which comes with a Mr. Saturn pencilboard.  This is probably what most people will get.  Admittedly, it’s cool.  Again though, I use this a lot for work, and that’s not very professional.

The cat one has high creep points.  I’m torn whether, for work, that would be considered too childish, or so creepy that nobody would comment.  The designer name on the front might be its undoing for me, though.

2nd from top is the World Textile series cover.  I did this my first year, and loved it.  It has the outside pocket,  which is where I keep my blank paper pad.  This also has a similar color scheme to the 2013 cover I used.  But… it’s not embroidered.

#1 is embroidered though, and by pure accident, I wound up with that style for ‘13 and ‘14.  It’s so luxurious, I don’t know that I could change, and if I did it would need to be very different.  I’m torn between whether I like or am ambivalent to that actual design, but it’s neutral enough that I could acceptably use it for work.  I’m bummed I can’t find something more colorful, since I’m using a delightful pink and yellow one this year.  By coincidence, this is also the same designer as the ‘14 cover I have, which is cool.  The big disadvantage here is that there’s no outside pocket (again, that’s where I keep my blank pages).  I’d need to get another cover-on-cover, since those have a slot for an outside pocket that I just cram the extra paper into.  The one I had is from ‘13 (annoyingly, they print the year on them), and is splitting at the seams.  A new one would also split pretty quick, since I overstuff this thing, but I need that extra pocket because I’m an addict.

I will take pictures of mine sometime soon.  It’s hard, since I don’t want people seeing my work stuff, which is mostly what I have in there.  But I accessorize it so well.  And I’m completely obsessed with it, honestly.

Full 2015-Edition Cover Lineup Preview Now Online

The full lineup is now available online! (Viewing only.) The site is currently only in Japanese but this will all be in English once the store goes live on August 31st, 7 PM PST.


Direct link to Onett cover

Direct link to full lineup

Guide to lineup:


BONUS: This is the Mr. Saturn pencilboard that comes with every MOTHER 2 cover. Now you can see Mr. Saturn’s font in Japanese!:

New 2015 Cover Lineup Sneak Peek

SPOILER ALERT: It’s a good year for the Hobonichi Techo.


See more sneak-peek covers here.

Full lineup reveal scheduled for Thursday evening in North America.

Introducing the New Two-Part Hobonichi Techo, avec

The Hobonichi Techo is available for the very first time in a two-part set with each book split into six months each. The books come in the A6 Original and A5 Cousin size and will only be available in Japanese. Everything is the same as the original full-year books, but now you can have a techo that’s lighter and easier to carry with you.

See here for full information.

A Message from Hobonichi Editor-in-Chief Shigesato Itoi

The Hobonichi Techo is a Life Book, and you are the author.

2015 marks the 14th year since we first created the Hobonichi Techo. As I reflect on the Hobonichi Techo, I’m starting to think it’s growing out of its own definition as a planner. It’s more than just a schedule book to keep appointments, and it’s not quite a diary, nor is it just a notebook. So I just kind of wonder what it really is.

The first thing I think of is how a user writes about his“Life” in the Hobonichi Techo. Life in a bigger sense, and life in an everyday sense. Turn this into a verb, and you get live, which brings you to all kind of meanings: living in a home, living your life path, and even live in person.

In other words, the word “Life” has two meanings to it: one that’s on a smaller scale, with every little moment, and one that refers to the grander scheme of things. I find it amazing that it can encompass all that. And when I look at people’s techos, I realized the same thing is happening.

If you were to rip out every daily page from your Hobonichi Techo and line it all up on a huge floor, one single day would look like just a single measly page within a huge sea of paper. But maybe one page will say “Ate pork chops today,” and another will say “Had a baby.” And some of the pages will be blank. All of these stand as records of things you personally experienced in your life. And if you stack these all on top of each other like a mille-feuille pastry, you can say, “This is my life.”

I don’t know if this serves as a good example or not, but the other day I read a techo by a professional baseball player who recorded his daily life. I was expecting a professional ball player to be thinking about baseball all the time and writing about it in his techo. But instead, he wrote things like “My dog is so cute,” and “My dog laid on my chest.” No sign of baseball anywhere. (laughs) But all lumped together, that’s who that person is.

Not many people in the world live a life that even sounds like some sort of biography. But living the life that’s written in your techo—working, playing, getting angry, laughing—that’s what it really means to live. And each person’s techo with their life written on the pages, well, that’s your autobiography. It just so happens that you have no way of distributing it to the masses, and each person just has one copy of their own. Maybe someone will want to read your book, and maybe you’ll read back on it in the future. “Book” generally refers to something that has already been printed, but the Hobonichi Techo is a book that’s ready for reading after the fact.

So this is a book that contains each person’s year. It’s a single volume in a vast collection, but there’s something really comforting to know that everyone in the world has one. At the same time, we can feel that everyone in the world deserves to be cherished by someone, and that includes both yourself and others.

So starting today, let’s give the Hobonichi Techo a new definition. It’s a Life Book. You’re the author, and you’re writing this book for the very first time.

As always, the Hobonichi Techo will begin sales on September 1st. I hope we see you soon.

Shigesato Itoi

Hobonichi’s New Haramaki Model

Cool Detail: For those who haven’t noticed, the score on the Super Mario World belly warmer is 1101, Hobonichi’s URL.


Original post here.

Haramaki Store

Ordering Instructions

2014 edition Hobonichi Planner store closing August 19th

In order to prepare for the release of the 2015 edition Hobonichi Planner and the full lineup of all-new covers, the current Hobonichi Store will be CLOSING on August 19th, 11 AM Japan time (2 AM GMT, March 18 at 7 PM PDT).

If you would like a 2014-edition planner or cover, please make your purchases soon! Once the store is closed, these products will no longer be available. But soon enough they’ll have a big lineup of gorgeous new covers to make it hard for you to decide again! :)

Their big announcement to reveal all the new designs will take place at the end of the month, about a week before the new store opens. The 2015 edition Hobonichi Store will go online on September 1st, 11 AM Japan time (2 AM GMT, August 31 at 7 PM PDT).

*NOTE: If you would like to order a 2014-edition product and potentially ship it with a 2015-edition product to save on shipping, you can complete your order now, go back to your account and view current orders, and there will be a button to “Hold Shipping” for up to 60 days. This will give you time to combine orders later and ship together. If you don’t end up ordering anything, you can just release the shipping hold when the time comes. (Walkthrough coming soon!)

Hobonichi Presents: Official Nintendo Haramaki Belly Warmers


Shigesato Itoi’s company, Hobonichi, is mostly known overseas for its quirky but versatile daily planner, the Hobonichi Techo. Another major product is one less familiar overseas: the haramaki, or belly warmer.

As this old but informative PingMag article points out, the haramaki was once strictly functional underwear that had a grandpa-image similar to yellowing long johns. In 2001, Hobonichi reinvented them as fashion items to layer with your clothes.


You know those everyday momentary chills you get when you bend over and your shirt rides up a little? Gone. I see London, I see France, I see someone’s wearing a super handsome belly warmer over their pants. Studies have proven that wearing this thick, extra layer around your stomach keeps the rest of your body warm in the winter. It’s also great in the summer when trapped inside all day under a blasting air conditioner.


Before and after wearing a haramaki at room temperature.

The 2014 Summer collection includes three very special designs created in collaboration with Nintendo. One design stars Mario, and two designs feature Mr. Saturn from EarthBound.





*Designs are reversible

While the sizes were designed around the relatively smaller body of Japanese people, the terrycloth material is incredibly stretchy and large enough to fit most westerners. You can wear it directly over your skin, over an undershirt and under your shirt, or completely over your shirt.

You can find size charts and ordering instructions here.



Hobonichi Planner Review

I never did like agendas. The garishly pastel-colourful, flimsy organizers of ostensibly cookie-cuttered schedules and dates of interest always reeled me in with their promises of true structure and instant discipline before betraying me with their horrendous interfaces (you can’t click anything!) and the revelation that organization takes a quantity of time and quality of patience that eludes me. A year ago, however, I heard of another ‘tool’ that promised everything that an agenda did while seemingly rectifying its flaws. It was well-designed, minimalist and sparing in colour, fit for fountain pens, near-perfect in size, and effortlessly customizable. The Hobonichi Techo Planner was originally created by Shigesato Itoi, a famous video game designer, copywriter, online personality, and author. It is, in many ways, Japan’s take on the daily calendar. A mature and sensible planner that still possesses a distinct sense of design and personality, the Hobonichi Techo is an excellent product that has become a new daily carry for me.

My first impression upon first seeing the Techo in the flesh paper was one of pleasant surprise. The Planner is small enough to fit in a palm, but slightly wider than a typical smartphone. It’s cover is made of thin, textured paper, and features centered, stamped gold characters and a logo. The cover’s spine simply says ‘HOBO’  and 2014, and its binding leaves several vertebrae-like bumps. The back of the Planner is unadorned. There’s a certain simplicity to the planner which belies its modernity, yet with a quality of non-austerity that simply would not have existed in a similar product in the past. The Planner is distinctly ‘this year’, whatever this year happens to be, while still pulling from the past.

The Planner uses Tomoe River sheets, a special and rather rare type of Japanese paper that is known for being fountain pen friendly and ridiculously thin. This planner apparently fits close to 500 pages. Perhaps what impressed me the most was how unimpressive the thinness of the paper seemed; I didn’t notice that it was thin, which was interesting to note. The paper is light, too, and almost translucent. When you write on it, whatever you wrote is visible on the opposite side. This didn’t bother me, though; I was, instead, quite pleased by the qualities that the paper demonstrated. There was little to no ink bleeding, and Tomoe River is pleasantly vanilla to write upon, a far cry from the unnavigable and prolific realm of printer paper and lined sheets. The Planner also opens flat, a thoughtful touch which will probably not be lost on users looking to capitalize on Tomoe’s canvas of enticing paper.

The Hobonichi Planner can also be purchased with one (or more!) of a plethora of covers. These covers allow for a high range of customizability, and emphasize a sense of uniqueness and a distinct personality to each Planner. I received a polyester cover and a PVC/plastic cover for my cover. The cover itself is just as thoughtful as the Planner itself, and has two different-ended bookmarks, a butterfly clasp for closing the cover with a pen, and room for several cards or small pieces of paper and material. The World Folk Patterns Pueblo cover which I received allows for the Planner to be fit in via an insert. I’d be remiss not to mention every idiosyncrasy of this cover. I love the two small tags that say Hobonichi and 2014 in a delightful sans-serif. I love the design of the cover, and its beige inner colours. I also appreciate the smoothness of the polyester, and the ‘cover on cover’ PVC cover, which covers my cover (did I cover that sentence well enough?). The PVC cover allows for notes and papers to be stored, and is just one of a few ‘Tools and Toys’ that Itoi’s site/company developed for the Planner. The PVC cover is subtly textured, and I don’t think it’ll be leaving my other cover for a while.

The inside of the Planner is just as well-crafted as its exterior, and features a plethora of additions and features. Inside, I found yearly and monthly calendars, daily pages, and a section at the back of the book devoted to, among other things, country code numbers, national holidays around the world, and a guide to sushi. I really like the way the dark, thin font looks on the creme paper - it’s calming and minimalistic, but dense and sophisticated at the same time. Little touches such as bi-daily quotes, ‘Coming Up!’ pages for the start of each month, and red-coloured Sunday fonts all add to the charm of the Planner, and further demonstrate just how detailed the designers of the Planner are.

The very page layout of the Hobonichi is something of a small wonder, especially if you’re used to blank notebook paper for scribbling down ideas. A dotted grid with margins allows for the Planner to be used as an instrument of precision, and for creating detailed and structured plans and schedules. The lines are still of a light grey colour, though, and are thus unobtrusive if using the Planner for artwork and the like.

The Hobonichi can accommodate many different forms of media and styles of planning or play. This is where I found its greatest strength: I used it to plan my day, to draw, to jot notes, to scribble, and to test pens. Many people that post in online Hobonichi communities use it for painting, while others use it to meticulously tweak their day’s schedule. I never would have guessed that  people would use a daily planner for such a diverse array of activities.

I was also unaware of the benefits of having a notebook that has dates. While this may sound absurd, writing on a particular page intended to be written on for one day connotes a sense of structure, and allows me to look back on past Hobonichi entries as if they are a progression of my life.

The Hobonichi Planner does, however, suffer from a small, yet upsetting, flaw. Tomoe River Paper is smooth, creamy, and thin. It allows inks to behave well, without feathering or any other spreading. There is some bleeding, but it didn’t bother me. What I was surprised to find, though, was just how long it took for fountain pen inks to dry when using it. Some features of my handwriting, including dotted i’s and crossed t’s, were loathe to dry even hours after being written. Pencil marks were easy to smudge, as were entries by other pens. While Tomoe River Paper was smooth, I would have preferred to use a paper which did not have drying times that were so long.

Ultimately, the Hobonichi Planner amazed me. Its benefits are subtle, and it is meant to be used daily. The Planner is thoughtfully designed, able to be employed for a multitude of tasks, and a pleasure to use. The more I used, the more I started to appreciate it, and to feel that it truly belonged to me. It truly does exemplify the Japanese concept of ‘Yo no bi’ - or ‘beauty through use’. If I could change anything about the Planner in its current incarnation, I would seek to reduce the drying time of the paper, and perhaps allow for a smaller, pocket-friendly version to be purchased. The Hobonichi Planner continually and near-constantly met or exceeded my expectations. I think that there are a few staples for fountain pen collectors to consider trying, if not owning. These include a Lamy Safari, a good black or blue ink, and a competent notebook. If you are looking for a daily planner, and are tired of using a typical agenda, the Hobonichi Planner may very well be able to join said stationery pantheon.