Japan is known for having some pretty interesting vending machines that sell almost anything you can imagine.
Recently one vending machine that appeared in the rural town of Uchiko and has become very popular on the Internet. This vending machine sells a delightful collection of origami models for around 10 yen to 50 yen. That’s about $0.10 to $0.50 USD.
The vending machine was first spotted by Twitter user @bon_chic. At the time of this post her tweet has received almost 16,000 retweets and over 23,500 favourites.
— ぼん (@bon_chic) April 8, 2017
The vending machine features 18 different designs and a handwritten sign that says “origami” written in Hiragana.
There’s also a little bag at the bottom with another sign asking customers to please leave the the empty plastic containers from their purchases so they can be used again.
The items on the top row of the vending machine include several designs that will change seasonally. Right now for spring there are 3 helmets and a sword to celebrate Boys’ Day on May 5th.
Next there are some traditional carp streamers, a traditional Japanese iris and a special money envelope. These models can all be used for Girls’ Day on March 3, Boys’ Day and Children’s Day which is also May 5th.
All these seasonal items sell for 30 yen each.
The items in the middle row are a bit fancier and sell for 50 yen each. These include a jumping frog, a set of lips that open and close, a talking crow, a horse that can flip and a spinning top.
The bottom row features simpler items at 10 yen apiece including a paper plane, ninja shuriken, goldfish, balloon, rabbit balloon and a balloon with wings.
When @bon_chic. visited the vending machine she purchased the flipping horse, lips, carp streamer and goldfish.
According to her the quality of the items is fantastic. Each one is made with beautiful paper to match the designs and folded with perfect, tight folds.
A Japanese news website has reported that the models are folded by a 61-year old woman who runs the shop the vending machine is located outside of.
They had an old vending machine that they weren’t using so they decided to fill it up with some origami.
You can see the shop and its vending machine on Google Street View.
The village of Uchiko apparently has a long history of traditional Japanese paper production and is a beautiful way to pay tribute to the area’s traditions. Who knows, maybe we might see more vending machines like this not only in Japan but elsewhere as well!