Finding substitutions

I had wanted a pair of traveling chopsticks for a while.

Why, might you ask?

Because I have sturdy plastic forks, spoons and knives when I travel, but it just doesn’t taste or feel the same if you have to fork a piece of sushi instead of picking it up with chopsticks.

Call me a food snob if you want.

Anyhoo, this was what I was enamoured by:

$12 from We Jet Set

It was going for $14.95 CAD in a local store (found them in Yorkville, in a little shop upstairs from Yamato), and all I could think was: Ugh! $15 plus tax for two STICKS?

Mind you, they’re very cool and very slim, but.. that’s just too pricey for chopsticks.

Now I had a couple of other options to choose from:

  • Pack those cheap wooden chopsticks and just deal with them being dirty (ick)
  • Pack a real pair of chopsticks that will NOT fit in the little pouches for my purse
  • Eat with a fork

In the end, the solution was neither of the above, but to think outside the box.

When I was in J-Town in Toronto (near Steeles), I saw a pair of CHILDREN’S CHOPSTICKS.

16.5 cm, and a perfect fit into my pouch.

And the price? $2.50 for a pair.


The chopsticks are not long enough to be considered adult-sized, but it makes no difference to me for picking up something as light as sushi.

Besides, I have little hands.

They even have little grooves at the end of the sticks (if you look closely at the picture above you can see the grooves) to help children grip the food better.

Sometimes, you just need to wait

All it takes is a little ingenuity, thinking or just plain ol’ dumb luck and sooner or later the solution will pop up.

This is why when people call me cheap for not wanting to buy something, even for $15, I just think to myself: children’s chopsticks.

About the Author

Just a girl trying to find a balance between being a Shopaholic and a Saver. I cleared $60,000 in 18 months earning $65,000 gross/year. Now I am self-employed, and you can read more about my story here, or visit my other blog: The Everyday Minimalist.