Hightide was founded by Koro Shibasaki in Fukuoka, Japan in 1994, and specialises in office supplies and stationery. Whilst the aesthetic evokes American and European nostalgia, the designs are heavily influenced by Japanese functionality, and produced with cutting-edge technology.
In addition to the popular Hightide branded planners, the company offers a number of product lines, including Penco, Nähe, New Retro, Grains de Sable, and Duram – each with their own distinct style.
There are three Hightide stores in Japan, and the company recently opened two physical storefronts to introduce their products to the US: Hightide Store DTLA in Los Angeles the summer of 2017, and Cornershop Brooklyn in New York in 2021.
The stores are inspired by bunbogu-ya, a local stationery store in Japan which should be familiar to anyone who grew up there. In these small stores, shelves were crammed with notebooks, pencils, erasers, pen cases, cheap sweets, and toys. For students with little pocket money, these stores served as a place to hang out, alone or with friends. Hightide aims to share this aspect of Japanese culture and nostalgia with the rest of the world.