by Melissa Forester
It is the season for leisurely outdoor strolls, picnics, bicycle rides, playing in the park, and just plain enjoying the beauty of our planet and the early summer weather. To make the most of the season, we have gathered some of the standouts from the latest crop of hi-tech outdoor gadgets.
one: This handy cup holder clips to picnic tables, chair arms, and other solitary surfaces, eliminating spills and messes. Made of durable plastic and chrome-plated nickel, it can support up to 700g in weight.
MoMA Store (www.momastore.jp) ¥2,000.
two: Help children discover the world around them with this outdoor explorer kit from New Zealand-based educational toy maker Seedling. Great for a day at the beach, picnicking, or a vacation getaway, the kit includes binoculars, a magnifying glass, a stretchy lizard toy, a note-taking clipboard, a head lamp, and an observation journal.
VICEVERSA (www.viceversa-e.com), ¥4,410.
three: Fashioned ‘wristop computers,’ Suunto watches are designed for sports fanatics of all kinds. The Lumi watch has a range of functions including a barometer, an altimeter, a storm alarm, sunrise and sunset times, and a navigational compass. It comes in a variety of colors and can even be worn as a stylish yet functional pendant.
Sporting goods stores throughout Tokyo, ¥41,000.
four: Graffiti, hip hop, and other modern art trends inspired graphic artist Peter van Veldhoven to create this cool line of messenger bags with interchangeable flaps and shoulder straps to suit your mood. Designs by up-and-coming artists are particularly popular with Tagger’s growing cult following.
Tokyu Hands and www.taggerbags.jp, ¥8,925–¥9,975.
five: This bicycle basket is a great way to stylishly accessorize your bike while making your shopping easier at the same time. The basket is detachable and has a shoulder strap for carrying while shopping, eliminating the need for plastic bags. The funky pattern was inspired by tablecloths crocheted by the designer’s grandmother.
MoMA Store (www.momastore.jp), ¥9,240.
Designed by Gerwin Hoogendoorn as a way to vent his pent-up frustration with traditional umbrellas, SENZ umbrellas are the first of their kind. Winner of several international design awards, the innovative shape and construction can withstand winds of up to 100 kilometers per hour without breaking or turning inside out, making these the first truly stormproof umbrellas. Available in three sizes and four colors, there is sure to be one for everyone.
Marcs International (www.marcs.co.jp), ¥5,00–¥6,800.
Win this! Weekender has a SENZ Umbrella to give away to a lucky reader! To win, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know what you think of the new Weekender. Write by June 8 for your chance to win and don’t forget to include ‘umbrella’ in the subject line. Good luck!