How to Create a Hanami (Cherry Blossom Viewing) Picnic at Home

As mentioned in my previous post about hanami (complete with origami cherry blossom tutorial), I wanted to recreate a cherry blossom viewing picnic scene that’s very common in Japan right now.

Japanese washi - cherry blossom

I decided to use a variety of cute sakura kirigami/origami to create a peaceful hanami atmosphere, then I added some common hanami staples like a cute plastic ground sheet (used as a tablecloth), cherry blossom chopsticks, onigiri (rice balls), noodles, grilled fish, sweet snacks, and the last but not least, beer and wine.

Japanese bento - cherry blossom picnic

Japanese bento decorations


Japanese bento deocrations - takuan


Japanese hanami picnic spread

To stay on theme, I also used my felt cherry blossom coasters, kirigami cutout sakura placemats, sakura printed placemats, and a couple of mizuhiki sakura that I made a few years ago.

Cherry blossom coasters


Cherry blossom toothpick holder


Japanese mizuhiki cords - cherry blossom


Kirigami cherry blossom

Please let me know what you think!  I’d love to hear suggestions for future picnic setups!


Cute Japanese Bento Accessories for Hanami

Before I show you the complete hanami lunch setup, I want to show you some of the adorable bento accessories that I have straight from Japan (you can also find some through Amazon here).

This is a lovely metal cutout set that you can use one cheese, deli meats and vegetables like carrots:

Japanese metal bento accessories

This is a very sweet set that has a variety of shapes, including individual petals to decorate dishes.

Cherry blossom Japanese bento accessories

It even comes with extra decorations that you can add in your bento boxes.

Hanami Japanese bento accessories

This mini mold makes cute little shapes for tiny onigiri (rice balls).

Cute Japanese rice ball shapes

You can make bento with mini rabbit heads, star shapes, flowers and little bear heads.

Japanese rice molds

A three set of rice ball shapes. These are medium sized and some with three different shapes.

Japanese rice shapes

You can make rows of hearts stars and bear heads…. aren’t they cute?

Cute Japanese rice shapes

You can make the shapes as simple or as decorated as you like. Most people like to make the onigiri shapes and decorate them with Japanese nori (dried seaweed paper). I don’t have any special seaweed shape punches, so I’m stuck cutting everything out by hand, but you can get seaweed shape punches on Amazon.

Japanese Egg Moulds

I have a couple of cute Japanese egg moulds and just wanted to quickly show you how the eggs turn out.

Japanese Egg Moulds

The key to making the shapes in these moulds is to peel them when they are still relatively warm and immediately lock them for a few minutes. Make sure to place the eggs straight up in the mould and squish them down with the top. Don’t worry, the eggs won’t break apart.

Japanese bento

To make a nice little bento, you can fill the box with some rice, cut the eggs in half to show the cute pattern with the yolk and add a few cherry tomatoes for colour.

If you would like to get some Japanese egg moulds, you can find them on Amazon.

Use Japanese Loose Leaf Tea Bags for Cooking

I purchased these tea bags from Japan and absolutely love them! You can buy empty tea bags that you fill up with loose leaf teas instead of using tea infusers. I find the bags to be better for teas since infusers tend to let small bits of tea through.

Japanese loose leaf tea bagsI also love these bags for infusing flavours when cooking soups. I love to use dried bay leaves and coriander in soups, but I don’t like biting into them when I eat the soups, so I place them in the tea bags and place it in the pot of soup. Everything stays in the bag as the soup boils, and when it’s done, I just scoop the bag out and that’s it!

Japanese tea bags for cooking

I’m sure there are different variations of these tea bags available in specialty tea shops, but I highly recommend these Japanese ones. They are the best!  You can find some on Amazon here.

Book Sale!

Hi all  *^_^*

I’m selling some books so please have a look and message me if you are interested in any of them!

I love all of these books and have kept them in excellent condition.  Although I would love to keep them, I’m sure they will find equally loving homes elsewhere 🙂

*Shipping will be determined according to delivery area.

Hardcover, full color, 80 pages

Softcover, full color photography, 160 pages

Softcover, full instructions, some illustrations, 365 pages

Softcover, full color, 144 pages

Hardcover, black and white, beautiful illustrations, 704 pages

Hardcover, full color, 255 pages

Hardcover, full color, 380 pages

Box set includes softcover book and Reiki healing cards

Hardcover, full color photography, 223 pages

Softcover, full color illustrations, 66 pages, imported from Japan

Softcover, full color illustrations, 81 pages, imported from Japan

Softcover, full color photography, 304 pages