The Invisible Child is one of the most talked about and studied short stories originating from the popular Finnish children’s book; ‘ Tales from Moomin Valley’. Centering on Ninny, a child that has been silenced and turned invisible by the mistreatment of an adult, it seems a far cry from the usual light and hearty tales from the Moomin book. In spite of the melancholy mood behind the story, The Invisible Child has a happy ending and has been referenced for teaching morals and the art of finding oneself for decades.

Despite being Finnish in origin, The Moomins have a strong foothold in Japan, with several stores and cafes dedicated to the characters dotted around the country. So popular, a theme park even opened up in 2019 just outside of Tokyo.

From the 18th of September Moomin shops and cafes nationwide will hold a special food and goods fair dedicated to the sweet yet melancholic tale of Ninny, The Invisible Child.

Ninny is a character from the short story ‘Tales from Moomin Valley’ (1962). Suffering from neglect and cold treatment from her cruel aunt, Ninny has become invisible and is located only by a silver bell around her neck. Alongside being invisible, Ninny is also incredibly submissive and obedient to the point of having no personality nor emotions in her.

Ninny is given to Too-Ticky by her aunt, who takes her to the Moomin family. While spending time with the Moomin family, Ninny is touched by the warmth of friends, family and love and gradually regains herself, until only her face is missing. The Moomin family try to help Ninny by teaching her to play, but because she only plays to be polite, it doesn’t work.
Little My says that until Ninny learns how to be angry and rediscovers all her emotions, she can’t become visible. Turning out to be true, Ninny fully reappears when she protects Moominmamma from Moominpappa’s prank and gets really angry.

Ninny Apple Millefeuille

Price: 1,540 yen

A Moomin Cafe original dessert made with freshly baked apples, fresh cream, custard cream apple jam and compote. On the side, a crispy millefeuille pastry crust has been fashioned into the shape of Ninny’s ribbon.

Ninny Apple Black Tea

Price: 770 yen

Available as both a hot or iced drink, this refreshing black tea is made with apple jam and green rooibos herb tea. With fresh apple mixed into the drink, the sweet flavour is spread into every sip.

Heat Change Mug featuring Ninny

Price: 1,980 yen

Pour liquid of more than 75°C into this mug and watch Ninny turn from invisible to visible with the warmth of the drink (and of course, your love too).

Size: Width 100mm x Height 80mm x Diameter 70mm
*do not use in a microwave, oven or on an open flame.

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Ninny and Little My Teapot

Price: 4,180 yen

With a capacity of 580ml, this glass teapot features a Ninny and Little My motif, and is a great way to add a bit of fun to the table or to a dinner party.

Capacity: 300ml
Size: Diameter 73mm x Width 195mm x Height 120mm

Ninny and apples Plate

Price: 2,200 yen

This glass plate features a repetitive print of Ninny and the Moomin’s favourite treat; apples. With a diameter of 180mm (7 inches) it’s perfect for serving up a small cake.

Size: Diameter 180mm x Height 22mm

Ninny and Little My Plate

Price: 1,760 yen

You can make a cute tableware set with this plate and the Ninny and Little My teapot. At 150mm (5 inches) in diameter, this plate is great for serving up confectionary or a small side salad.

Size: Diameter 150mm x Height 21mm

Ninny and apples/Ninny and Little My glass mugs

Price: 1,870 yen each

Enjoy a hot tea in this heat resistant glass mug. Available in two designs, choose from a print of Ninny and apples or Ninny and Little My, or complete the set and get both.

Capacity: 300ml
Size: Diameter 75mm x Height 80mm

Reversible Ninny placemat

Price: 1,540 yen each

Available in two colours, protect your table from food spillages and hot messes with these Ninny printed placemats. Reversible, one side features the repetitive print of Ninny and apples, whilst the other a print of Ninny and Little My.

Size: Width 195mm x Height 120mm

Ninny heat resistant table trivet

Price: 1,760 yen each

Protect your tables and kitchen sides from hot pots and pans with these cute Ninny printed cotton trivets.

Size: Width 180mm x Height 210mm

Ninny tote bags

Price: 2,640 yen each

Featuring a print of invisible Ninny and apples, these tote bags come in two colours and are perfect for the eco-friendly shopper.

Size: Width 420mm x Height 640mm

Ninny and Moomin mini drawstring bags

Price: 1,320 yen each

Keep things organised with these mini-drawstring bags. Available in two reversible designs, there are multiple ways you can style the bags.

Size: Width 95mm x Height 175mm

Ninny and Little My Ribbon hair ties

Price: 1,485 yen each

Stylise like the Moomins with these Ninny and Little My inspired hair ties. The pink ribbon resembles Ninny’s sweet and loving nature, whilst the red resembles the wild and feisty personality of Little My.

The Ninny fair will be held from September 18th at the following Moomin Cafes and Moomin Shops:

Tokyo Station store
Futako Tamagawa store
LUMINE Kitasenju store
LAZONA Kawasaki Plaza store
LACHIC Nagoya store
LUCUA Osaka store

Tokyo Dome City LaQua store
Tokyo Skytree Town store
Canal City Hakata store

All of the Ninny goods will also be available to purchase from the online store, alongside a range of other cute Moomin products

By - Connie Sceaphierde.