Beautiful sunny weather for exploring the city. Leisurely conversations with friends of the shop. The excitement of new stationery. The creative spirit stoked by simple exchanges of pen and paper.
That was the vibe for our experimental Short Trip Weekend, an event we created as a way for TRAVELER'S Notebook users to connect and have fun, as an alternative to the pre-pandemic format of our bustling, packed-tight meetups.
Our dutiful little sign advertising the event
Our TRAVELER'S selection grew considerably since our last meetup in November of 2019, but once the pandemic changed everything (like traveling), we were stumped as to how we could continue acting as a hub for all things TRAVELER'S—especially because a number of items were restricted to in-store only sale! Thankfully, everyone has been steadily working together, figuring out how to do things in this era of change.
Fast forward to September of this year. We began selling the highly requested Short Trip Notebook refills, an item you could previously only find at one of the four TRAVELER'S Factory stores in Japan. During my last visit to Japan, I actually bought a kraft paper Short Trip refill from the Nakameguro TRAVELER'S Factory shop in Tokyo, and used it as my travelogue—a perfect size.
With the "short trip" as our inspiration, we hatched the concept of turning Omoi into a temporary TRAVELER'S hub over a long weekend, where TN users could convene and stop through at their leisure, rather than rushing over to attend a timed event. We loved the idea of coordinating a trip with a friend, the kind where you agree to meet up at a central location, our shop in this case. And if people are going to make the effort to come visit us, we thought we should provide them with some good recommendations for where to go next.
For the occasion, we created a Short Trip Guide made to fit into your TN, that listed 3 parts of the city within walking distance from Omoi, where you could shop, eat, and people watch. We left the back blank so people could record their own short trip.
Then there were the new shop stickers, the amazing stationery swap box (a take something/leave something freebie depot), the raffle and visitor's log, and of course, the thoroughly satisfying TRAVELER'S Factory stamps, which everyone loves to try out. On the day before the event, we packed all of this into a cozy little kiosk tucked beside the TRAVELER'S department of our store, and hoped for the best.
Head of Merchandising Jessi assesses the kiosk
Not too big and not terribly small, the kiosk had just enough space for you to sit your TN down and stamp away
So many little things to take and collect! And—oh look, the Short Trip refills, too.
The Recommended Short Trip Guide relaxing alongside our store postcard and stickers.
Our humble Visitor's Log, ready for your entry.
And our mini Omoi washi tape/packing station just below
On Thursday our up-the-street neighbor, Menagerie Coffee, came to serve up a delicious selection of coffees and pastries right outside the shop. On Friday, we set up a table outside and journaled, refreshed the store TNs, and spoke with passers-by about all things stationery. And the weekend was a whirlwind.
April of Menagerie and Liz talk shop in the pleasant Thursday weather.
The view on Friday
Making an enjoyable mess refreshing all the store TNs
Luxuriating in the autumn sunlight.
Now, you'll notice we don't have any pictures of anyone actually at the kiosk! It may seem an odd choice to promote such an event and then snap no pictures of people enjoying it, but there was something kind of special and even private about people spending time at the Short Trip kiosk, enjoying themselves. It seemed invasive to interrupt that moment, and we much preferred to strike up a conversation with visitors after they'd gotten their fill of the kiosk. And it was really fun! Really nice to catch up with some of our long-time customers after so long! And really nice talking to everyone just starting out with their TRAVELER'S!
So while there's no commemorative group photos, we wound up with a stack of raffle entries, a bunch of fun drawings in our visitor's log, and a swap box full of goodies like extra fountain pen ink samples, postcards and stickers, memo pads and notebooks—all contributed by our Short Trip visitors (not a bad way to offload those extra supplies, huh!).
Thanks for visiting! Please come again. We'll be happy to see you.
Thank you to everyone who made a short trip to Omoi over our weekend event. We hope you enjoyed stopping by and that we made it worth your while. We certainly had fun trying this out, and because it was so much fun, are now considering making the TRAVELER'S kiosk a permanent part of the store.
Stay tuned on that, plus a couple more TRAVELER'S surprises before the year 2021 is out.