After getting initially hooked on LINE after reading about the Lamy X LINE fountain pen tie-up, I ended up buying a whole load of LINE- themed accessories.  Here are some of them.  They are surprisingly well- designed and utilitarian.

For example I have never come across a money bank as well thought- out as this Sally one, (pictured below with some LINE post-it notes).  So much better than the cold, pig- shaped, porcelain ones I used to get free at the bank (a LONG time ago), and where the coins always got stuck or had a horrible rubber stopper that you couldn’t remove properly.  I recently bought a Vespa- shaped money bank at a European airport and it was EXACTLY the same and had EXACTLY the same design flaws as the ugly porcelain pigs I used to collect.  Here’s Sally…

Here at LINE, they designed an actual mechanism to allow you to easily release your cash.  I don’t know why this mechanism hasn’t occurred to anyone until now.  They are also made of a pleasant warm material (also in the LINE figuirine’s pictured below).


Without trying to extrapolate too much from the particular to the general, I think its safe to say that in Europe, where the design of money banks has not improved since the early 80’s, so the design of many other everyday items hasn’t improved either.  To be fair to the continent, this is a truism at least a hundred times more applicable to the UK than to the rest of Europe.  Design in this country is shocking.  And it is everywhere you look.  Some more accessories…

LINE Sally and Brown coasters, tins, Brown notebook and Sally headphone jack.

Suffice to say, Japan and South Korea are streets ahead.  I hope the trend for well- designed Japanese/ Asian- style goods which started with Muji about 15 years ago, will continue to sweep across the West.  That is what is needed- a Muji-fication of Western Europe!

(Well, we are now meant to be in the Asian century).  Here’s my Brown notebook…

Brown notebook