Japan is well known for it’s fake food culture with most restaurants having replicas of popular dishes in their show window. It therefore is no wonder that the VEGETABRELLA was invented in Japan.
The Vegetabrella is an umbrella that looks like the head of a romaine lettuce. It’s name is a combination of the two words “vegetable” and “umbrella”. When closed it has a very realistic resemblance to a romaine salad head. When opened it becomes a normal umbrella in light green. It is equipped with a small bag in the same green fabric as the umbrella. The ribbon to keep it closed reminds those found on salads in Japanese supermarkets. The Vegetabrella is sold in a carton box that also resembles Japanese salad boxes. Overall it is a really well designed and fully functional product.
It was designed by Yurie Mano and the design company h-concept. Each Vegetabrella is hand made by Tokyo Noble – a family owned company that specializes on the production of high quality hand made umbrellas. Their shop is close to Akihabara in Tokyo and they allow customers to choose from hundreds of umbrella parts to then assemble it in front of the client.
The Vegetabrella not only serves as an umbrella but it has UV protection that also makes it popular amongst Japanese women to avoid suntan.
The Vegetabrella sells for 4725 Japanese Yen (~60 USD). It weights exactly 200 grams without box and has a diameter of 80 cm. Recently it was featured on NHK World’s COOL JAPAN program, which gave it major exposure outside of Japan. Since then many blogs picked it up as well as various newspapers and magazines. It is available for sale on the NIHON ICHIBAN online shop at the Japanese retail price plus international shipping.
We are wondering if the Vegetabrella is the only fake food umbrella from Japan or if we will see more variations coming out in future. Who knows, Japan is always good for a surprise.