When I was at school there was a girl in my A-level maths group who used to amaze me on a daily basis with her ability to twirl a pen on her fingers whenever she was thinking. In a way it was annoying, but it was just what Y did without even being conscious of it. She always use to tell me that it was something that everyone did back in Hong Kong, and strangely I’d forgotten all about it until a couple of weeks ago when I was sent a MOKURU to try out.
This amazing wooden toy is perfect for anyone who has had enough of fidget spinners and wants to move on to the next craze that’s sweeping the nation. The thing with MOKURU though is that when you first look at it your natural response is – what the heck do I do with that??? Certainly that was my first response, and I had to go away and find a couple of YouTube videos to see what I was supposed to do with this bit of wood that I’d been asked to review.
Coming from Japan, MOKURU really is a craze that has swept the nation there. Beautifully crafted from beech wood the idea is that this handheld toy allows people to flip, tip and spin it to their heart’s content. It’s an incredibly tactile toy and I’ve found myself on several occasions now picking it whilst I’m sat on the sofa and just rubbing my hands over the wood (which I realise sounds all kinds of wrong when written down!) It’s small enough to fit in a pocket or handbag and it really is something that all ages can get to grips with.
Designer Masakazu Node originally came up with MOKURU to test an individual’s balance and focus. Huge amounts of work went to ‘create the perfect size, shape and materials’ for MOKURU and I think they’ve got it spot on. With its slightly curved sides and rubberised ends the idea is that you can use your hand to flip it across a surface and trust me, when you start doing that it becomes more than slightly addictive!
Once you’ve got the knack, you can also spin it in your hand (just move any valuable ornaments out of the way when you’re trying to teach yourself how to…) Why stop with one MOKURU though – people are starting to get into the competitive spirit with other MOKURU owners and see who can perform the best tricks and flips. I’m led to believe that true MOKURU masters can handle up to five in one hand. I struggle too believe that as I’m still trying to get to grips with just one, but then again I still struggle with the concept of anyone actually completing a Rubiks Cube too!
What I don’t struggle to believe though is that MOKURU is likely to be a big hit here in the UK. Much as it already is in places like Japan and Hong Kong. With quite a grown up look to it I also expect that it’s something that adults won’t mind being seen with either. There’s no doubt that it’s a stylish, well designed toy and being available in black (Genbu) green (Matcha), orange, (Kirin) white (Byakko), red (Suzaku), blue (Seiryu) and yellow (Inazuma) there really is one to suit everyone’s tastes.
MOKURU is perfect to play with to help focus, concentration, imagination and also to alleviate stress. Be warned that, as with any good design, there are plenty of fake products out there on the market, that simply don’t have the same quality behind them. Distributed exclusively in the UK and Ireland by Peterkin, MOKURU is available from today (7 July) from SMYTHS Toys and Amazon – so you can buy it online here.
You can find MOKURU on Facebook as MokuruUK and on Twitter they are using the hashtag #Mokuru. On Instagram they are Mokuru_official. Their website is www.mokuru.com and on there you can find out more about MOKURU, the design journey it has been on, and how to become a MOKURU Master!
Disclaimer: We were sent a MOKURU for the purposes of this review. All opinions remain my own. This post contains affiliate links.