• Japanese Fashionista!

    Tokyo, Japan…we finished our visit to Japan with a real “score”!

    Vintage Kimono shopping on the corner of Meiji-Dori in the bustling Harajuku district! This open air market had thousands of vintage kimonos and obi to choose from!

    My friend Shelly got into it and walked away with some amazing finds…a summery kimono as a robe for the beach, an evening black kimono to dress up, and a rugged denim worker style kimono to make a fashion statement!

    A little background on the kimono:

    The kimono (着物) is a Japanese traditional garment worn by men, women and children. The word “kimono”, which literally means a “thing to wear” (ki “wear” and mono “thing”), has come to denote these full-length robes.

    Kimono are T-shaped, straight-lined robes worn so that the hem falls to the ankle, with attached collars and long, wide sleeves. Kimono are wrapped around the body, always with the left side over the right (except when dressing the dead for burial.), and secured by a sash called an obi, which is tied at the back.






  • Shrine of the Times!

    Tokyo, Japan…Today Japan awed and inspired me at the Meiji Shrine (明治神宮 Meiji Jingū), located in Shibuya. This is the Shinto shrine that is dedicated to the deified spirits of Emperor Meiji and his wife, Empress Shōken.

    A peaceful oasis in the heart of modern Tokyo, Meiji Shrine is sheltered by a 700,000 square-meter forest of 120,000 evergreen trees, donated from all parts of Japan when the shrine was established.

    The shrine grounds are entered through two of Japan’s largest torii (shrine gates), made of beautiful cypress wood more than 1,700 years old.

    The shrine was rebuilt in the 1950’s after being destroyed in World War II…this is the most visited shrine in Tokyo.

    In part of the compound, you can write a wish and place at the altar and shake a cylinder of thin sticks till one pops out revealing a wisdom or poem relating to your life! Mine was great!

    This was an amazing yet solemn place that just evokes a true sense of Japan’s long history and proud people! The design is a hallmark of Japanese beauty!









  • Hollaback Girl!

    Tokyo, Japan…love Gwen Stefani and the Harujuka Girls she made famous! Today was shopping day in the Harajuka area and the adjoining Omotesando area…

    Colorful fashion, platform sneakers, sparkly accessories and cartoon graphics galore! This area mixes this Japanese love of “cute” fashion through the winding side streets and brand name designer fashion on the major avenues…These young fashion girls are colorful pop culture icons in Japan and they are visible working in as well as shopping in the shops all along this area! They are the real life version of the colorful Japanese drawings…

    Funny enough, fashion wasn’t what inspired me today! It was a great shop of unique handmade stickers that I loved! These digitally rendered stickers at “B-Side Label” looked great used all together on a wall or on a bike…so many cool ways to make a statement!

    I got a feel for young Tokyo today and it was a cool peek into this colorful world!





  • Luxury Overload!

    Tokyo, Japan…this morning’s view was of a snow capped Mount Fuji in the distance! What a beautiful sight looming far beyond Tokyo’s urban sprawl!

    Today is fashion time! We braved navigating the city’s subway system to get us to the shopping mecca of Ginza! We managed to get there without getting lost and once we arrived we were struck with the amount of mega luxury brands jammed into one area! Luxury after luxury with one being more expensive than the next…it’s mind blowing to even think who is buying all this! I admit my head was spinning and needed to stop for directions a few times as some stores are down alleyways that you would never expect!

    I thought the buildings themselves were interesting…the bland modernity was transformed with custom facades to set each brand apart!

    Dover Street Market by Rei Kawakubo of Commes des Garcons is a curated collection of fashion cool…this bazaar of sorts is meant to give off a vibe of “beautiful chaos”…but to me, the sales people stole the limelight from the store itself! Each Japanese associate had such amazing style that was unique and so distinctly Japanese! It’s this kind of “out-there” fashion mixing that is totally chic yet interestingly new that you rarely see elsewhere! Very inspiring!

    The day flew by as we walked the streets going store to store and the sun sets early now and the day darkened very fast! As we wrapped up this day of fashion mega brand overload, we headed back to the hotel admiring the city’s lights all around us!