If you can find a better natto pencil case, we’d love to see it.

Mainly due to its hard-to-love texture, I’ve never been a fan of the fermented Japanese soybeans known as natto. However, I do respect it for its rich nutritional value and would highly encourage anyone who isn’t me to eat it.

I also appreciate the traditional aesthetic of natto, especially when it’s packaged in bundles of straw. This is done because the straw has certain bacteria that aids fermentation.


Looking at the picture, one might think to themselves, “Say, that looks a bit like a pencil case.” So it’s with little surprise that You+More, the novelty good line of Japanese lifestyle brand Felissimo, went ahead and concocted the “Byooooon” Stretch Natto Pencil Case, using corduroy to simulate the straw.

As I mentioned, that’s hardly a mind-blowingly original idea to begin with, so I was a little underwhelmed when first hearing about this. It got me thinking that to really capture the natto experience, they’d have to put some slime inside the case to make gooey strings come out whenever you grab a writing utensil.

But my mouth was quickly and thoroughly shut to discover that You+More did something even better. They sewed in translucent threads with little brown wooden beads inside the case. This creates the illusion of natto very effectively and without the problems associated with actual slime.

The genius who came up with this concept back in 2015 was housewife/creator Kumiko Abe. Back then her prototype was profiled in Couturier No Tane magazine and got a lot of buzz, but this is the first time the “Byoooon” Stretch Natto Pencil Case will be mass-produced and sold commercially.

The only thing missing is making it sticky and stinky, but there are plenty of DIY solutions for that.

So in conclusion, this natto pencil case is simply perfect. I really never should have questioned the brand which brought us the much loved Bowl of Noodle Towels, in the first place.

Source: Felissimo, Tsukuru Koto Kurasu Koto (Kumiko  Abe’s blog), PR Times
Images: PR Times

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