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Did you know that on top of Valentines day and White day, Korea has ONE MORE holiday for giving sweets to someone special? Pepero day 빼빼로데이~ a holiday made for giving pepero snacks that is held every year on 11/11!  Why that date? Well because it resembles the stick biscuit treat! ♥

If you are a fan of Asian snacks, chances are you have run into Pepero or something similar before at the markets! It is a Korean “remake” by Lotte of the very popular Japanese snack Pocky by Glico, but since it has been on the shelves here since around 1983 it is thought of as a beloved Korean snack by everyone here. Taste-wise it is hard for me to tell the difference honestly! ^^

Pepero Day is a holiday mainly for couples and students to exchange beautiful Pepero-themed gifts or hand out small treats to friends at school. I think it is a really sweet idea (literally) and is not very painful on the wallet since a basic box only costs 1,000 won! Students can buy one box and split it up into several smaller packets for mini gifts, or you can buy very extravagant Pepero gifts that cost 20,000 to even over 50,000!

According to wikipedia, Pepero day started on 11/11/1994 when students at a girls’ middle school in Busan exchanged boxes of Pepero as gifts with the wish to grow “as tall and slender as a Pepero” haha that sounds totally Korean for sure.

Lotte (the maker of Pepero) denies that they started this holiday themselves, but insists that they started to notice a large jump in sales for the snack every November as other schools caught on to the trend. When they discovered the reason behind it in the 90′s they wanted to encourage the holiday with special promos and gift sets which seems to expand more and more every year. Nowadays you can buy a range of items from other brands here, but Lotte still have the largest presence since they are the original.

Regardless of how it got started it seems to get bigger and bigger every year, now Lotte makes almost 50% of their Pepero business in November thanks to this holiday!

Pepero has a normal box design that they tend to use throughout the year, but around Pepero day 빼빼로데이 they roll out this box style which is colored a bit differently!  At first I was not sure why they would change the box just because of the holiday, but I am pretty sure now that they reasoning is to make it a little more elegant-looking + the colored edges also allow you to use them in making shapes with the boxes…

Like so!!  This is something I love about pepero day, these awesome sculptures made of of boxes to give as gifts pop up all over the shops!  They have many designs~ hearts, flowers, houses, boxes that can contain another gift inside, boxes spelling out L-O-V-E, etc!  Some people make them at home, but you can also buy them pre-made for a price from the shops now~  the box art above ran around 32,000 (so 1,000 per box)

Just like with all the other major gift holidays here, you will see special gift tents pop up all around the city 3 weeks or so before the date.

Almost every mini stop in Korea is stuffed full with Pepero boxes in November! My local shop had jumbo boxes (which are actually filled with several small boxes, not large versions of the snack!), individual boxes, and you could even buy them in bulk!

Grocery and stationary stores also take part and set up displays with gifts you can buy.

A large amount of the sets sold are special boxes by Lotte for the date and simply have XX amount of pepero boxes within the case, however recently they have started to sell a few limited edition flavors in these gift sets like chocolate biscuit or dipped caramel versions.

Pretty Pepero shapes on sale at E-mart!

This year they had a line of Hello Kitty pepero and Rilakkuma!

Stationary stores in Korea sell extremely pretty versions of similar biscuit snacks along with special gift packaging that is the perfect size for Pepero~  however the taste of these is often not very good :P

Really cute gift that was actually a pencil case filled with pepero sticks~ nice idea!

Some shops also had pre-packed kits for you to make your own, which I think is WAY cuter.

I also noticed a lot of photos like this on Naver blogs recently, money rolled up and placed in the box instead of the treats. These seem to always be from Husbands for Pepero day when I read the blog comments, but I don’t know of anyone personally that has given a gift like this~ must be a new little thing some couples do.

♥ ♥ ♥

Cute idea for maybe a parent to gift a kid, but painfully lazy boyfriend… I would be kinda pissed if I just got some money from Nara!  Would you?  The charm of the holiday is its cute simplicity….

For Koreans that are sick of Pepero~ how about cute Pepero-themed cookies?! ♥

Or Pepero cake! I want to try making these sometime!

Pepero hearts holding ferrero rocher chocolates in the center!

Korean’s really seem to love ferrero rocher… around Valentines Day you see piles of them *_* guess it is no surprise that they would roll them out for pepero day too lol

Extra snack-tastic gift boxes on sale at the stationary shops!

You can also buy a range of pretty decorated sticks, but they cost a lot so why not just DIY?

Let’s make some cute Pepero for gifts!!

This year I decided I wanted to make my own deco pepero gifts to give out because just handing out boxes was too easy and the nicer ones are expensive, but taste gross!  In Japan they actually have really cute examples of how to do this because some girls give deco pocky for Valentines day~ so I was able to look up some really good inspiration^^

To get supplies for my pretty pepero I had to pay a visit to Bangsan Market, which is the huge cooking supply market here in Seoul around Namdaemun.  They have a few shops that are just for crafting pretty treats and gifting them, so they had tables filled with things I could use and special bags + boxes to package them in! I think I spent about 20,000 won on supplies, generally everything was 1,000 each!   They also had tons of choices for plain biscuits to decorate, so I got a baggy of short chubby blank ones as well as a few boxes of normal Pepero.

♥ ♥ ♥

I will feature Bangsan market and give you guys directions in a future post!

I also had grabbed some cute Daiso things to try ♥

and to my excitement, Bangsan Market had tons of chocolate molds with Korean phrases on them!! I bought a bunch because I can always use these for something :D

Looking extra pretty while I decorate in my pajamas haha!

Decorating individual pepero sticks is extremely easy!  I think the trick is to just relax and have fun with it.

 

the trick is to just go quickly and not think about it too much!

The Korean chocolate molds worked really well! It is a little tedious to get the colors inside the writing part (you have to do it quickly with a toothpick) but the result is very cute ♥

Nara was over because he wanted to make some things as well!  He had fun making large chocolate characters ♥ couple craft-time! He also acted as lookout to make sure Milk (our Kitty) did not get into anything *_*

One idea I got from the examples online was to stick 6-7 pepero together to make a cookie deco bar of sorts!  You can stick them together with chocolate one by one, but I found it was easier to just lay them flat together and pipe the chocolate in-between each quickly in a matching color~ works just as well and you can always flip it to the other side to decorate if it is to sloppy-looking for ya!  Finish off with pretty details and a chocolate!

The molds I bought made chocolate pops with Pepero as the stick!  You have to pop them out carefully, but it worked nicely!!

I bought a lot of cookie crumbs to make some larger goodies as well ^^ they sell a bunch of flavored kinds here in Korea so I bought a rainbow pack and oreo-type flavor.

After I had a bunch, I picked my favorites and placed one large piece plus several smaller individual deco peperos into the special gift box I had purchased! I also made sure to cut some pretty wrapping paper and fold + tape it down to the bottom, it made the box look a lot nicer + deco tape

Here are some of the Pepero “bars” I made!

and some of the shorter ones I made with the plain sticks I purchased!

and these are decorated box pepero~ fast and easy!

Packed up and ready to give out as gifts!  The quantity of treats is less vs just buying a box off the shelf, but I think these look a lot cuter and are a bit more special!

And here is Nara’s finished gift!!!  He wanted to eat it right away hahaha!!  I also gave him a few to give to his friends at work and family ♥

as for my gift, it arrived on my doorstep the following morning!  It was a huge long box, Milk was extremely excited to play with his new toy lol

 Aw he sent me a GIANT pepero plush bear!!  It is so soft and long, I can use it as a body pillow :D or beat an attacker senseless! Hurrah!

나라오빠~ 감사합니다!  

And here is my gift to you guys~ I hope you enjoy it ㅋㅋㅋㅋ

Making these was extremely easy and really the cost was quite low, now I have the chocolate molds so next year I can make piles if I want for almost nothing.  If you live by any kind of Asian market, chances are they sell pepero so you should give this a try!!

Have you celebrated Pepero day 빼빼로데이 before? What did you give or get? Have you make deco Pepero before or plan on making some now that you read this post? Comment below!

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58 Responses to “Pepero Day ♥ 빼빼로데이 11/11”

  • Custom avatar Jenny:

    This looks so cute and fun, I want to try it so badddDDDD AHHHHHHH!!! Too bad buying all those supplies here in Canada would cost a small fortune :’(

  • Custom avatar julie doll:

    oh my gosh! how intense. your decorating skills are off the chartssss. i love what you did :D definitely doing your own is way cuter and more tasty :3 nara is one lucky guy!!

    • Elle:

      Hey Julie! Omg it is SO easy, you can totally do it!! The first few felt a little tedious, but once I relaxed I was able to crack out a ton with the TV on haha. Did you see the dinosaur sprinkles? hehe

  • Wow that’s a lot of 빼빼로 and looks yummy but I like more the ferrero rocher. Your new pillow is so cute♥.

  • Thanks for another awesome & adorable post! I’ve been a huge Japan geek for ages, but I’ve really enjoyed learning about Korea’s cute side from your blog (^-^)V

  • They look so pretty and colourful! I love making little things like this, I may have to try!

  • damn! pepero day seems to be the best, and you decorated your sticks so cute! i wish it would be celebrated in germany too ^_^”

  • Custom avatar Nalae:

    Omg, it looks so great, send me some pls haha **

  • Custom avatar Leanne:

    I love these kind of holidays! I wish we had more loving/gift giving ones in the US.
    This is very cute, I can’t wait to make some when I get the chance :D

  • Custom avatar Paige:

    Ahhhh, I loved this so much!! Your decorating skills are amazing and it’s so cute, I want some too! Thank you for explaining it!! Now I know why my penpal went to the very sweet trouble of sending me a box full of it. (And those packages look familiar, that’s the kind that she sent me!)

    So, I’d say that my first Pepero Day was pretty amazing. :) Even if we had to celebrate it many, many miles apart, I’ll remember it for a very long time! And I’m glad your day was wonderful too. ^^

  • Custom avatar Cat:

    This is so awesome. I just put an event on my calendar so I can celebrate it next year! Even if I can’t find Pepero in the US, Pocky is easy enough to pick up. More than that, I want to make my own too! :)

    • Elle:

      hope you have fun making some or giving them as gifts! Both taste exactly the same in the end haha however if you can find Pepero imported it will usually be a bit cheaper since the won is closer to the $ vs the yen atm. It is only about $1-$2 a box when I used to buy it back home~

  • I’ve gone gluten free for health reasons so no Pocky or Pepero for me. :(

    I did find a recipe online for a “homemade, gluten free Pocky” but I don’t know that I am adventurous enough with my limited baking skills to try doing that. (There also apparently is a campaign to get Pocky to make a gluten free version…maybe if they do Pepero will follow as well.)

    But I enjoyed looking at your pics of decorated Pepero so much! So cute and pretty and fun! And the Pepero pillow is hilariously cute.

    • Elle:

      oh wow, a gluten free recipe? That is really interesting, wonder how it tastes. My mother has to eat Gluten free for her health as well (Celiac) but the bread products are hard to get a proper consistency, however since pocky is a crispy biscuit it may actually not be so bad hummm! Not to be a downer, but I dot see Glico ever taking notice of a petition for pocky such as this, “Gluten free” is not a marketable term in Asia like it is back home now, also people seem to not crave substitute products quite as much. Even worse in Korea since we are not a place of many flavors/choices with snacks~ I could see Korea making a “ladies version” diet or calorie pack though. You should try to make some!!!

  • Custom avatar Cher:

    Omg they are sooooo cute!!! I loved the ones you made yourself! Unfortunately my country does not have such a culture. It sure seems fun!! ^^

  • Custom avatar Olivia:

    Those are so cute!!! I didn’t celebrate 빼빼로데이 this year. The school I teach at doesn’t allow it (blatant brand advertisement and all that), although some of my teacher friends had students at their schools give them 빼빼로, which I think is very sweet. Next year I might pick some up to give to my friends, and if I’m feeling adventurous I might try to decorate them a bit as well. ^v^

    • Elle:

      I cant believe some schools here ban the holiday! How sad~ do they ban White day or Valentines day as well?

      • Custom avatar Olivia:

        I’m not sure if they ban those holidays too. I’ve only been teaching there for 3 months, but I guess I’ll find out. I am actually inclined to agree with their decision not to allow 빼빼로데이 at school, only because as a teacher it’s always an extra challenge maintaining classroom control when the students are hyped on sugar. :P
        Also I figure the kids can just give each other their gifts after the school day ends anyway. ^^

  • Goshh, how deliciously cute and extremely sweet ^w^

  • Awww these are adorable ! ! ♥ Want some ^ ^ / /

  • I am new to this blog but I am so glad I found it! Everything is too adorable ♥ And this post was just too yummy and cute. I like having a third day to celebrate love! You made some awesome Pepero! Gonna have to try that one day!
    Kieli~♥

    • Elle:

      Welcome to my little blog Kieli! I am so glad you are enjoying it :D lots more cute stuff on the way~ I have so many photos to edit! hehe
      You should totally try to make these, they are simple, cheap, but look so impressive on a plate when you finish ^^♥

      • Thank you for the warm welcome! ヽ(=^・ω・^=)丿
        Haha, I know what you mean! (I need to fix a bunch I have too lolol)
        I will definitely have to try! I know my boyfriend has a huge sweet tooth so he would definitely enjoy these ^-^ But sadly I don’t live in Korea >.< Do you know where I can find these online? I've seen the Pocky ones but not Pepero =x
        Kieli~♥

  • I love your decorations! This has definitely inspired me to make some pretty candy from my molds this year!

  • Wtf Liz these are sooooooooooooooo cute!!!! Become a professional pepero deco master in the US!!!

  • Custom avatar Chani:

    I’ve been following your blog for a while and I LOVE it! Your pepero sticks look amazing, lucky are those who receive such a sweet gift :) You should open a webshop and sell all this cute korean stuff, like those molds. Accessories, stationery, small toys – awww…

  • Wow you did an amazing job!! You’re very pretty btw even in pjs! :p I have an Asian market place near my home I wonder if they sell DIY kits. I’m want to give it a try!

  • Oh my, girl, you’re like the pepero queen!! This look so much fun to do, sadly you can’t get all those cute things here, not to mention here we only have 2 Glico flavours; white and chocolate, and are incredibly expensive and I find it ridiculous to be honest.

    And about the festivity, in Argentina (I’m from there but living in Spain), there is the “Sweetness week” promoted by a sweets company since 1989 and consist on giving a sweet and receiving a kiss back.

  • Oh my goodness, these are way too cute! I’ve been waiting for this post since you kept previewing the pepero on your Facebook! They are so sweet and creative looking, like I would expect anything less from you though! I remember making the chocolate “lollipops” one year as a kid with a mold. They had the different colors you could pipe in the molds and such. These are a million times cuter though, the colors are perfect!

  • Custom avatar pinkksoupp:

    Omg that is seriously adorable!
    I first found out about the pepero day when i watched korean variety shows but this is amazingggg.
    There’s a daiso near my place but i’ve never noticed the molds and stuff, time for another trip there soon!
    Thank you for sharing your pepero day prep with us Elle and it’s so cute that Nara’s into it too, just like you.

  • oh my GOODNESS i absolutely loved ogling these pepero artworks! thank you for the post and hope all your lucky friends + nara enjoyed them <3

  • Custom avatar Louisa:

    These are so incredibly cute! I love them! I wish we had a holiday like this in the UK! I might just have to go to my local Asian marker and buy a bunch of Pocky and decorate them. We don’t get as many adorable decorations over here which is a shame.
    I love the bigger chocolates with the coloured letters and hearts!

  • Custom avatar Aislyn:

    all of your pepero looked delicious! i only got one on pepero day from a student :(
    please do a post on Bangsan Market! im waiting for my paycheck to go shopping at all these places!

    • Elle:

      Will do! It was a lot smaller than I expected, but I spent time on Naver and found a few really good shops for cute crafting that are totally worth sharing since it is hard to buy some of this stuff in other areas around here! I was wondering where people got supplies from lol ♥

  • Man, so colorful it looks delicious~ o.o

  • Custom avatar anna:

    These are so cute! And you decorated them so nicely! I’m impressed since it always seems like these Asian sweets making kits take a lot of patience. I always just end up with the sprinkles everywhere lol.

  • Custom avatar Liz:

    Such a cute holiday! Yours turned out beautifully and the fact that you made them in adorable kitty pajamas makes them even better. <3

  • Custom avatar Christina:

    OH MY GOODNESS ELLE! So your not only telling me that we can sit back and make these cute crafts but we can EAT THEM TOO?! I just now died and went to Korea cuteness heaven! ♥_♥

  • Those look so delicious. I’ve seriously been missing out with regular pocky. Why can’t they sell that here. Very disappointed. I think I’m going to make some just to see how they turn out.

  • omg I am so craving for some of these
    and your decorating skills are awesome :p
    they all look great and delicious! too pretty to eat :p

  • Custom avatar Maeva:

    Last year I was living in UK with korean housemates and one of them bought us Pepero for that day, it was so nice ^^ Recently I bought stuff on gmarket to do my own Pepero but didn’t try it yet, just the mushroon kind of chocolate. Here in France we don’t have a lot thing to decorate like this so I can only buy on internet *sigh* When I’ll try to do it, I’ll get inspiration from your blog, so thanks :)

  • Custom avatar Jessica Villani:

    I’ve just stumbled on your blog.. I think it’s SOOOOO cute. OMGosh it’s so pink and sweet and I just LURVE how you explain everything about Korean culture.. I just want to absorb everything in case I’m lucky enough to ever visit. :)
    PS. I saw the A-M-A-Z-I-N-G proposal your fiance made.. you 2 are so right together ;)
    xoxo from Italy

  • Custom avatar nagrom:

    you are so pretty elle!

  • Hi Elle! This is my first time coming to your site, and I’m inlove with it already! It’s so positive and cute! Will definitely be subscribing :3
    Keep up the good work!

  • Custom avatar Virginia:

    Thank you so much for your adorable and enthusiastic blog. There are only six days left until Pepero Day, but I haven’t seen any store displays like those yet! I searched your site looking for Bangsan market, but I wasn’t able to find it. Can you tell me which subway exit it is closest to? I usually take Hoehyeon Exit 5 to get to Namdaemun. Is it near there? Thanks so much for your time!

  • Adorable, adorable!! I love your blog + youtube!! You’re so inspiring and just has this amazing positive attitude! :) anyway, I also made chocolate back when I toured China and it was fun.. unfortunately, I’ve never seen these kinds of chocolate that look so cute! I did a horrible job of decorating the chocolate.. yours is perfection. I especially love how you designed ”Cute in Korea” ! Lovely post!! xx

    -Nikkie

  • Oh wow!! So much Pepero lol. I really like the way you decorated them!

  • Elleeeee thank you so much for this post!! This inspired me so much. Before I’ve just bought a bunch of pepero and put it in a flower or heart for my namjachingu, but I’ve always wanted to make custom pepero. After seeing this post I spent something like 7 hours making 200% original pepero and my bf LOOOOOOVE them. (TuT )
    I made strawberry shortcake, strawberry almond, chocolate peanuts, chocolate sweet tarts, chocolate with lucky charms marshmallows, chocolate and strawberry with white messages, chocolate s’mores, chocolate oreo, vanilla oreo,….
    Thank you so much for this post, I wish I could upload a picture. Your pepero is daaaaaaaebak!!
    <333Sarah

  • I already am missing Peppero Day! haha

  • Custom avatar Renee:

    Hehe my birthday is on White Day… too bad where i live we dont celebrate it:p

  • Elle, Pepero really cute. Do you have any idea whereI can purchase Pepero moulding online?

  • Elle, Thanks. From Penang, Malaysia.

  • Custom avatar Veve:

    I adore this littles yummi artworks! You really are very talented! I d like to do some myself but i dont live in korea and dont know how to get the pepero molds and tools! Do you know a website where i can order those accessories online and ship them to my country! I did some trsearch but cldnt find any! I appreciate your help! I am big fan of what you do! Keep up the CUTE work!

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My name is Elle and I am an Illustrator & Gallery painter from California, but currently I am living in Seoul with my Korean Fiancé!

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