The first time I visited a Muji was in London. They hadn't yet opened a store in the US and I was enamored by their minimalist interpretation of everyday items. Now that they've opened a New York flagship, I'm a frequent visitor -usually picking up things like notebooks, office supplies and storage items if I'm not just browsing for the sake of browsing.
I have never actually visited the store in Japan so when I spotted a shop-in-shop at a retail center I had to take a look. Before I go into how great it was -because of course it was great- I should add that Muji products can be found in small convenience stores similar to American Wawa. So prior to finding a full store, I came across plenty of their merchandise, much of which was similar to what is offered in the US. The full store, however, offers plenty of products that I have never seen from them.
Where US Muji offers lifestyle products such as sheets, throw pillows, some sportswear in mostly natural or linen colors, in Japanese Muji denim was the order of the day. It could be found in the unique such as denim pillowcases and sofas, to the unexpected like denim curtains and rugs. I should add that Japanese rugs are cushioned and here we would more likely use them as blankets or throws. Slippers and pencil cases aren't that unusual, though not exactly common and rounded out the offerings.
The most interesting was how prevalent it was. Denim lifestyle products weren't a novelty but an integral part of the merchandise. Case in point, if I were to take an aerial view of Muji in Japan, I bet 30% of it would be indigo.