It’s March, 2019! Let’s look at Hina Festival Dolls at the Aeon Shopping Center in Fukushima City….

Yesterday I rode my bike to our local Aeon Shopping Center. I asked permission to take photos of the dolls for sale in the store. I was told that normally it is forbidden, but they made an exception for me. (So I DO have permission.)

Hina Festival is March third. In the days leading up to March third, Hina Doll sets are for sale. They can be very expensive. The one above is over a thousand U.S. dollars.

There are different styles, and different artisans who create them. The doll set that a family chooses depends on both what they like and what they can afford.

The above doll set is about 125 dollars, so it’s much more affordable than the set in the first photo. Plus, if a house doesn’t have a lot of space (small homes are common in Japan) this small style can be convenient.

And then ultra-small sets. The one on the far right is only about twenty U.S. dollars. Very affordable. And cute!

You’ll notice that these sets are all Hina sets, and thus follow the same style. There is an emperor (always on your left if you are the viewer) and an empress (always on the right.) These sets are not to be played with, but um, that’s what my mom said about our nativity set and yet Baby Jesus still went on quite a few adventures around the house. So I can’t help but wonder how many high-spirited girls and boys play with these sets when Mama and Papa are not looking?

 

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