Fukubukuro pictures, Part 2

Now I’m back home and can upload pics from my Sony, here are some more pictures from January 2nd – the day the New Years lucky bags go on sale in Japan.

The excellent site Tokyo Fashion has already done 3 fab articles with loads of photos on Fukubukuro here, here and here.

As for me, I went to Marui One first, as I wanted to get gothic gear. I was there about 10.30 but there was no queue out the door or anything. It was only when I got inside that I saw masses of people looking at the sales and the various bags. Here’s a quick pic I took on my way out:

I was there primarily for the shopping, not to take pictures, so there weren’t that many. After all, I had THREE major centres to hit! I passed Studio Alta around midday also, and there weren’t too many girls out the front, although it was very crowded inside. Many had the rolling pink floral cases by Liz Lisa, I noticed.

Had I but known, I should’ve just stayed there, as between Alta and Lumine Est, most of the major gal brands are covered, and I wouldn’t have been swept along in the seething mass of people that was Shibuya 109. But, to Shibuya I went.

It didn’t look too bad from far away…

 

But you could only see the madness when you got up close!

Everywhere were people jostling, clutching multiple lucky bags…some TV company was even filming it, as you can just see here…

lucky bags Shibuya 109

gyaru lucky bags Shibuya 109

lucky bags Shibuya 109

You can see the familiar brand names Cecil McBee, Vanquish, Ank Rouge, Rose FanFan, JSG, and one that might be Manalove…everywhere girls were opening their packs and swapping with girlfriends nearby (as items are not always the same, even in bags from the same brand).  I took these pics as I was carried along by the crowd. Once inside it was little better; again the crowd just surged along taking you with it like a raging torrent, and you had to try to get out of the crowd to enter a shop you liked. One – Emoda – had quite a queue to even get in the store, such was its popularity. And then there were the queues at the tills.

I decided just to buy particular pieces I liked rather than lucky bags, as I’d already bought 2 naoto bags in the morning, and the ones where I could see the contents, were not that appealing to me.

I then went to Harajuku, visiting La Foret for the the gothic punk underground floors, before proceeding along the street past Forever 21, where you can see girls spruiking the bags outside:

 

Here’s what they sounded like: Girls at Harajuku Forever 21 spruiking lucky bags

And here’s how slow it was walking in the crowd from La Foret to Takeshita Street: Harajuku on fukubukuro day, Jan 2

Takeshita Street was, of course, crowded to the max as well:

SO great were the crowds out that day, that as I was waiting for the Yamanote line train back to Shinjuku, a very strange thing happened: the  trains stopped to let people OFF on the other side, but wouldn’t let people ON.  This just doesn’t happen on a normal day, no matter how busy. Two trains passed in this way, and I despaired of ever getting home, when a third train finally arrived and actually opened its doors to the ravening hordes. PHEW!

Street fashion Shibuya & Grimoire

I have had an amazing week in Tokyo, even if very brief. I got to vist some very special stores (as well as the big-name ones), and caught up wth some great people.

Yesterday I met up with Valerie of Tokyo Arts Factory and we went on a walking tour of Shibuya. I really wanted to visit the store Sister (& ground floor store Candy), as mentioned in my cool tights blog post.

Well, we went! I will do a proper post with pictures next week, but we did indeed buy the grey lace-patterned tights I’d seen on the dolly kei girl.

Saw a groovy girl in Shibuya, crossing the road, so got a photo with her (Valerie took a proper portrait shot of her, so stay tuned for that in the near future). I like how she has a mainly black/white/grey palette with a touch of red (a bit like me!).

I also love the playing card pattern on her skirt, the pop of bling in the lurex of her crochet shawl, and the little meat cleavers dripping blood around each of her buns. A bit of a spooky gothic touch.

Valerie and I then dropped into famed Dolly Kei store Grimoire…and the girls whooped and exclaimed to see us! Valerie is quite good friends with them now, but I hadn’t seen them sice Merry Go Land…when I had blonde & purple hair! It took one or 2 a minute to suss it was me, now with red hair.  They were kind enough to admire my tights (mauve floral from Isetan, brand name “Antipast”, ~2200 yen). Anyway onto a photo!

Lucky for us, the lovely Marie dropped in from her work on the 4th floor – she has really good English, which helps with conversation and jokes!  When I held up a beautiful vintage black collar with jet beading all over it, Marie said it was one piece Courtney Love really liked when she was there. Courtney took all the girls back to her hotel room to party on (for those who don’t know that she dropped in on her last Tokyo visit).

Anyway, though it wasn’t cheap, I did love the piece and knew I’d wear it, so onto the credit card it went!! 

Nice to see a guy in the shop doing his version of the look – shall we call it Dandy kei, perhaps? I am in love with Heri’s look here – the coin-embellished wide belt, the bubble skirt, the military hat…I think hers is overall my fave dolly kei look. Kaori and Marie also looked lovely of course, and I noticed that Kaori wore black & white, not the rich colours we often associate with Dolly Kei. Awesome! As I often favour this monochrome look myself. Hitomi was absent, hence not in the photo (sorry to Hitomi fans).

News on the Grimoire front – each of the girls will shortly have ther own indvidual blogs, as well as the combined store blog, so stay tuned for that! I also video’d the store while I was there, so as soon I get home and upload it, I’ll post that too, for your viewing pleasure.

We also visited Virgin Mary, but I didn’t take more pictures…the store looked very much the same as when I was there in September. I did look at some of the little antique dolls to buy, but resisted :)

This was meant to be a short post! Now I have to pack, send stuff home, sell stuff to Closet Child and make last minute purchases in the next 3 hours, so adios for now :)

January 2nd – Naoto Fukubukuro Day!

Well, I had an epic shopping adventure today!

I decided to start off with my first love – gothic fashion, namely, at Marui One floors 6, 7 & 8.  There was no queue, as I did leave it til after 10am to go…but boy were there shoppers once inside!

I bought 2 lucky bags from h.Naoto – although the choice from his various ranges was vast, including Gouk, Gramm, Heaven, Peace Now, Sixh etc,  chose Black Peace Now and Anarchy.

Here’s what was inside:

Black Peace Now

I chose the purple bag which was “cool”, the red BPN bag was “pretty”

Four good items were inside:

1) an assymetrical hem t-shirt dress, value 9,030 yen 2) assymetrical hem skirt, value 14, 280 yen (I can only just get it done up and it’s a medium)

  

3) A great black jacket with zips and buckles, value 22,050 yen

 

4) a white blouse with matching ruffled collar (not in picture), value 14,90

So you see, the value of any one item made up for the 10,500 fukubukuro charge (or was it 10,000?) 

Then there was the Anarchy bag for 10,500 yen, which had 6 items.

  

1) t-shirt type dress with elasticised drop-waist & 2) purple tank top

 

3) Warm wool jacket and 4) jeans

 

5) a hip length fleecy hoody with pockets, and 6) a check scarf. I have to admit, these I wore all day.

You see, the goodie bags weighed so much, and I left my credit card back in my room, so I decided to go back to my hotel and dump it all before heading out to Shibuya. I changed my vinyl jacket I’d worn for the hoodie, and wrapped the scarf round my neck.

The jeans will have to be sold, as I don’t wear them and they’re too small. The warm wool jacket is a bit too big…but maye Dom can wear it. Not sure if the dress with the drop-waist is really me…will have to wait til I put it on. I have to confess it made me cautious of buying more goodie bags. I only have so much unwanted stuff I can take on the plane!

After this I went to Shibuya 109, then La Foret and Takeshita Street in Harajuku, before hitting Lumine Est back in Shinjuku and then the subnade. Bought more things, but all separate; no bags. Alas, the pics are on my little camera, and I failed to pack the uploading cable for it…so pics of girls with their fuku bags will have to wait.  I think this is enough for today, but I’ll show the rest of my haul tomorrow.

What items did you like best in this stash?

Dolly Kei style printed tights by Celeste Stein

This post I will focus solely on tights in floral, paisley, cherub and other dolly kei type designs. (See also my post on Dolly Kei ebay finds)

Here are some of those quintessential looks as worn by Heri (Grimoire):

 

and some less obvious choices; the last one I took at the Virgin Mary store (she’s wearing Vivienne Westwood thigh highs)

   

I discovered a US company that has an amazing variety of designs, and in a great range of specifications as well. If you can’t find something you want here, there’s no hope for you. Many of them I find will work well into a dolly kei wardrobe, depending on how you co-ordinate, of course.

Celeste Stein

To start, you can choose to have your fave design printed on tights, leggings, thigh highs, trouser socks, or even scarves or car mats! Even just within one category, such as tights, you can choose from sheer tight, lycra tight, nylon tight, lurex tight, fishnet tight, or solid nylon/spandex tight. Phew!

But where they really come into their own is the huuuuuuuuuge range of designs offered. You can choose from categories, such as floral, paisleys, angels, or by colour…or just go exploring. While many of the ones I’ve chosen are quite “busy”, remember in sheerer stockings and fishnets, the impact will be reduced for a more subtle effect.

Angel/Cherub Designs

                   Angel Tapestry                            Natural Angel                           First Kiss                  Heaven

     

Renaissance or medieval themes:

                           Spring                                   the Creation of Adam                    Mideval (sic)

   

Tapestry designs

   

Insects

                  white butterflies                                yellow bugs                                 pink sandy

   

Florals

                      Blue Bonnet                                     Granny Wall                              Sonjia

   

These are lace florals in colours Bashe, Yellow & Lilac (there are other colours too)

   

Lace & Rose design in tan, pink & white (more colours available)

   

Lace design tights in rouge, red and midnight tones

   

One of my favourite designs is the Stained Glass Lace series, which is like battenburg lace

   

Floral medallions in blue, pink and white

   

Paisleys

Rose Paisleys in cream, peach and blue

   

There are also more traditional paisleys and psychedelic ones.

And finally, some miscellaneous ones I liked:

       

There are also animal print designs, orientals, modern abstract, pin-up/Vintage looks, spots, stripes, psychedelic designs….you’re just gonna have to have a peek yourself. Oh, and check out her couture designs too.

Do you like any of the above? Do you know of any good sources for floral, lace and dolly kei patterned tights?

Let’s talk about tights

So today the sun has finally come out in earnest, rendering today’s subject a little moot, but nonetheless, today I want to talk about tights.

I am a tight fanatic! I have multiple tights/stockings/leggings in skeleton designs, leopard print, stripe, harlequin-type diamond….but I don’t have any floral ones!! As any dolly kei girl will tell you, you need floral tights (or ones with angelly cherubs on them) to complete the look…and so I’ve gone searching. Of course, along the way I’ve just found some that are plain stunning, even if not floral.

Sister is an amazing rock-chick store in Shibuya, and they have a very cool range of tights here.

They don’t just come in blue, these; there’s reddish and khaki “Fall Victim” tights as well:

 

There are some spirally optical illusion tights called “She has 2 Sisters”, in pink & black:

 

as well as fantastic lace print ones called “Femme Fatale” – WANT these!

 

Oh and BTW, these are the tights being worn by the dolly kei girl in the grey fur in these pics:

 

The store is having a 70% of sale on 4th January too…if I have any money left after buying Fukubukuro on the 2nd & 3rd…I’m there!!
(Read the Sister blog here for more info on the brands and new releases)

Hands down my fave Australian tights designer is James from Black Milk. See my Black Milk posts here, here and here, for starters.  I have a couple of his skeleton tights, and though they’re now sold out, for the goths here’s the leg bone and little skulls tights:

   

And how fab are these Escher leggings (available on pre-order only – so order ‘em fast!), and Great Wave leggings:

   

The houndstooth and tribute-to-Mcqueen abstract tights are also incredibly striking:

 

I wanna share his whole collection with you, it is that great, but will leave you with some of his flares, here in lace and velvet.

 

Seriously, check out the Black Milk range (he also does bodysuits and jackets), or see his blog Too Many Tights, for up and coming styles.

I have to confess that this next one comes to me from Susie of Style Bubble, who recently posted an outfit featuring the amazing “Cyclops” tights.

Les Queues de Sardines have quirky, fun tights in various colours & “out there” patterns, like human organs/entrails…

 

 

 

Heck, I haven’t even got to the floral dolly-kei tights I was originally gonna post, and this is getting a bit long  - so part 2 will be coming up soon!

What are your fave tights/leggings?