Bento4Japan – alive and kickin’!

Amigurumi onigiri
eat me!

Apologies for the cobwebs on the Bento4Japan HQ – we are still alive and raising funds for Japan!! A couple of things….

Bento4Japan raffle
In case you lost track of time (like I did!) the EU-wide bento4Japan raffle on JustGiving has concluded!! In all, we have raised over £200 (inclusive of GiftAid) which is short of our target, but we thank everyone that had donated from the very bottom of our riceball hearts. Thank you so very much guys for supporting us!

We have contacted the winners individually….and they aree…..drumroll….

Jinny – the thermal bento set
Jenette – the blue bento cars set

Giant picks: Michelle, Gail, Bittersweet and Kathleen!!

Congratulations everyone; hope you enjoy your new bento toys!

Bento4Japan Amigurumi bento set! SOLD FOR $107!!!

Bento box food play set

If you have been visiting our ebay page to bid on our goodies, you would’ve noticed this cutie up for auction there! Crafted by our very own super talented karamaime, this adorable bento have been handmade by love over a few weeks.

All items are life-sized and hand stitched with love and care for details. This set will be a joy for your little one to serve you o-bento anytime!
It includes:

* 1 lettuce leaf
* 2 onigiris (rice balls)
* 1 shiozake piece (salted salmon)
* 1 lotus root (renkon) slice
* 1 kabocha (Japanese pumpkin) wedge
* 1 broccoli floret
* 1 shiitake mushroom
* 2 tamagoyaki (omelet) slices: spinach and traditional
* 1 carrot flower
* 1 edamame pod
* 1 cherry tomato with a wooden pick
* 1 usagi ringo (apple bunny)
* 2 grapes
* 1 strawberry
* 1 orange slice
* 2 food cups (paper and felt polka dot)
* 1 bamboo chopsticks
* 1 origami chopstick “envelope”

The items of this box are made from wool blend felt fabric (30% wool/ 70% viscose), acrylic felt, wool blend yarn, cotton yarn and are stuffed with poly fiberfill. Cotton thread was used for sewing and a minimal amount of fabric glue to secure tiny spots. The little pick is made of wood and ribbon. The bamboo chopsticks are not a disposable type and can be re-used/repurposed.

The plastic bento box measures approximately 22 x 14 x 4 cm.

Felt and yarn creations are not as plastic ones, keep in mind they won’t probably last as much as they would have been made from another “long lasting” material.


Bento4Japan Crane earrings

The very talented and creative Sheri had also donated a beautiful pair of origami crane earrings! Please bid generously – this item have been handmade by Sheri herself.

Onigiri polymer clay earrings

And last but not least, I made a pair of earrings too! Crafted out of hand moulded polymer clay , this pair of earrings is then baked gently over low heat before being glazed and then topped with a connector of a REAL south sea pearl! Please bid generously here!

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Bento4Japan – an update

Wow. Bento4Japan have most definately come a far way. When I sat here two weeks ago typing away furiously to set up the framework for Bento4Japan; I never envisioned how well received it would be. I was obviously wrong. The support that we have received from bento makers around the world, bento retailers and bloggers have been overwhelming. As of today we have shot past the $2,500 mark – with much more to come. This is amazing considering that our initial goal was $1,000. This is definately much more money than we can raise on our own. Make sure you check out our auctions if you have not yet done so – where HAVE you been?


Irresponsible Allegations
It had also become apparent in recent days that there have been concerns raised by irresponsible media with regards to goods coming out from Japan. No, the ume that you use is NOT radioactive; neither is the natto nor nori. These have been produced months ago. Neither are the bento boxes and accessories radioactive – what a load of poppycock (don’t I just sound so english 😉 ).Just because someone in the media find it appropriate to paint misleading pictures of three-legged birds and people not touching the tapwater DOES NOT MEAN THIS IS TRUE. True, some local small-scale farms and dairies in and around areas affected by the nuclear plant may be potentially unsafe; but these are well controlled and contained – besides, the scale of the produce production means that very little; if any at all ever leaves Japan anyway. The biggest issue at the moment is the hardship in getting much-needed supplies to the communities that badly need them due to infrastructure problems, not radioactive milk.

The only people affected by this scare-mongering are the business of the Japanese people, already seriously affected and impaired by the tragedy. For example, we are of course pleased that our favourite magewappa makers near Fukushima are unaffected; but widespread rumours of those beautiful work of art first of all hurt the magewappa makers in a way the tragedy had not and secondly; deny you the pleasure of holding a beautiful work of art (PS: Please watch out for our magewappa auctions! There is already one very special magewappa up right now with more to come )

To find out more, please hop on over to the Big Onigiri’s message here.


Back to the auctions
As we are raising money for charity, please be aware that any auctions that are up benefiting bento4Japan MUST have 100% proceeds going to charity. We have stressed this on our Verified Fundraisers page; but it was apparently not clear enough. To ensure that you are included in our list of verified fundraisers (and to protect our very generous and kind bidders) please email me prior to putting an item up for auction on ebay. We have the responsibility to ensure that the trust our kind supporters have placed in us is channelled in the right direction, and not for commercial gain. Please grab our badge and promote bento4Japan; but in order to protect our cause we must insist that this is only used for non-commercial purposes.


Posted in bento4Japan HQ news | Leave a comment

Welcome to bento4Japan HQ!

The devastating events on 11th March had shook the world to it’s core, and sometimes saying a prayer just isn’t good enough anymore. Rather than standing by watching helplessly, I thought it might be a good idea to try and raise money together through our love of bento. And this was why this page was created.

Onigiris (Japanese rice balls) have always been a staple in times of emergencies. Highly portable, nutritious and delicious, this is also a firm favourite for bentos. Touched by the scenes of bentos and onigiris being distributed to those affected by the tragedy, the international bento making community is coming together to raise much needed funds for the Red Cross to aid their efforts in Japan. We had derived so much enjoyment from the Japanese culture and food, it is only right that we give something back to the country that had given us so much. We are not running a marathon or shaving off all our hair (too chicken); but we are auctioning off well-loved bento making items (new and gently used) via ebay and raising awareness and funds through other channels.

I want to donate money! Donate in JustGiving or in our sister site, FirstGiving. Either way all donations will be going to the Red Cross. If you are a UK taxpayer, please consider JustGiving in the first instance. JustGiving will reclaim 28% of your total donation and the Red Cross will end up with 123% of what you donated. JustGiving & FirstGiving takes 5% off all donations to help pay for continuous innovation in online fundraising to help more charities raise funds online.

Anyone who donates in JustGiving will be eligible for a bento gear giveaway. Check our EU Raffle tab for more information!

    What else can you do?

You can also check our ‘Other ways to help‘ tab.

I have something to auction off! Have something to auction off? Ebay is currently offering a fees rebate if all proceeds from the sale goes to the Red Cross. Click here for more details from ebay. Please tag all your sales with ‘Bento4Japan’ to enable easy tracking. Mission Fish / Ebay deducts 20% off the initial donation of upto $49.99 and progressively less depending on final sale price (for further details,  here )

I want to buy something! Want to buy some fabulous bento gear? Well, say no more; click here to search for all new and preloved bento making items, gears and books! All items are individually posted by bento lovers world wide and bento4Japan is not affiliated with sellers nor derive a profit from promoting the listing. Any transactions is wholly between the buyer and seller. However, so that you can be confident that you are bidding from a genuine seller, we will continue to update the ‘verified fundraisers’ page – please check back often!!


Posted in bento4Japan HQ news | Tagged | 1 Comment