Wooden Spatula Fish from Japan Stirs You with a Smile

Looking to add a smile to drab kitchen drudgery? Pick up a Sakana Kibera, literally “Wooden Spatula Fish,” and I dare you not to grin right along with it.

Sakana Kibera displays a whimsical yet practical design by Rie Isono of Pear Design Studio and is available in 3 different types of wood. Each piece is handcrafted by Hiroyuki Inoue.

Take away the smile and few, if any, would guess that the shape of the spatula resembles that of a fish. Even the “eye” doesn't look out of place as its meant to be a way to hang the spatula on a kitchen hook.

The addition of a single, small, strategically-placed line, however, instantly transforms a utilitarian object into something amusing, even endearing, without compromising its original functionality. Such is the ingenuousness of Japanese design.

Sakana Kibera retails for 2,625 yen (about $) and can be purchased online through the White Rabbit Express website. (via TokyoMango, Spoon and Tamago, and Codomono Coto)