Sunday, 16 March 2014

Mustoy figurine painting in Seoul

In Seoul, you're never short of things to do. While coffee shops, bars and karaoke rooms may be the most popular hang-out spots, there are also a huge number of 'theme cafes' that offer a range of unique experiences. Although these places call themselves cafes, it's not their refreshments that you'll be going there for. Some offer a chance to play dress-up, others allow you to hang out with dogs or cats, and others give you the opportunity to get artistic and spend time creating something.

Yesterday me and a friend discovered 'Mustoy' cafe, where you are given a blank ceramic figurine and a basket full of permanent markers, and you then sit and decorate the character however you want.

The whole cafe is surrounded by shelves of toys painted by celebrities, artists and regular customers

 There's no need to book to visit Mustoy, you can just walk in and sit down, and you then choose which size and shape of figurine you want to customize. There are a few different options, and we both chose the basic smaller figure with a 'hair up' style.

Once you've been given your blank figurine, colored pens, a drink, and a card to draw your design on, you are free to sit and work on your character.


Unsurprisingly, there were quite a few couples in the cafe when we visited. I think part of the reason that so many of these kinds of themed cafes exist in Seoul is to do with Korea's couple culture. The way that people date here means that there's a big market for easily accessible places that offer interesting and unusual activities. Of course, it's also a great way to spend an afternoon just with a friend or two.

Our finished Mustoy characters
Not only was this a really enjoyable way to spend some free time in Seoul, but we also got to take our toys home at the end. The figurine is carefully wrapped and put in a box for you to take away. The best part is that all of this cost a total of just 15,000won per person!

We visited the Mustoy cafe in Hongdae, but there are also 8 other locations around the country. Check the Mustoy website for more information.

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