Yosegi Puzzle Boxes suggest that the best way to dissuade petty thieves and nosy family and co-workers is to make them think. Developed during the Edo Period (early 17th to mid 19th century), these Japanese stash holders require equal parts manual and mental dexterity to open.
Artists from Hakone, Japan decorate box pieces in the traditional Yosegi pattern, and then assemble them in varying orders so that each complete design looks a little different. Boxes come in 3 Sun, 4 Sun, and 5 Sun sizes, as well as a range of steps-to-open classifications. The 5 Sun Yosegi Puzzle Box shown here will take you 27 steps to entry. Others require just 7. Or a delightfully frustrating 36. That’s the one I recommend for anyone you’re giving cash or jewelry to for Christmas this year. Make them work for that generosity, dammit.
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