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Sister and Candy – edgy fashion in Shibuya

Last Thursday I visited the hipper-than-hip store Sister, with Candy underneath. It really is a must-see for any fashionista visiting Tokyo.

You approach it from a laneway just near Parco and Loft in Shibuya…and at first you think, “it can’t be this little laneway…it’s a bit desolate!”. And then you see this:

Yup, a bunch of mannequins with the word “FAKE” emblazoned across their chests. Then you see a bright yellow doorway and hot pink kerb behind them.

 

The telltale spooky lettering of Candy totally gives it away.  You know you’re in the right place.

It’s time to venture in, so up the stairs you trot (gotta be fit!)

Once inside, you’re greeted with polished wooden floors, shiny, almost mirror-tiled ceilings, sumptuous window drapery..and rack after rack of to-die-for, glam-rock clothes. There’s an eclectic yet cohesive mix of cutting-edge designer looks from the likes of Giles, Mark Fast and Marios Schwab, vintage pieces and shoes, tights in amazing designs (as in my post on great tights here), and millinery.

Yes, they stock the designs of the awe-stonishing Piers Atkinson, as well as that of Stephen Jones, UK milliner and tophat maker extraordinaire. You can just see a Christmas card from Stephen on the top shelf in the pic to the left.  Jones’ latest collection is the most modern I’ve seen yet, with that stunning triple tophat a standout:

I think B-grade sci-fi may have been his inspiration for this collection, entitled XYZ : X is for X-Ray. Y is for Yesteryear. Z is for Zombie.

Piers’ headwear is from the Winter collection “It’s Later than you Think” (seen below), and is so punk and gothic in aesthetic that it makes me want to go back to millinery myself! This is the stuff I’d like to make – and wear! What do you think?

  

Back to Sister, the store. There’s distressed leather, jackets with metal panelling (just seen below), as well as exquisite vintage embroidered pieces:

They’re not afraid of print; alongside tartan and spots there’s digi-prints and 70′s psychedelic prints:

Each piece in the store has a very luxe feel; I love the deconstructed zipped leather, leopard dresses and fluffy fur jackets jere.

As you head towards the stairs to head down to sister-store Candy, you’re greeted with this Hannibal-Lecter like concoction that is spooky yet fun. It is a parka-like jacket with lots of black ripped muslin dripping from the sleeves and edges – very Naoto or Stigmata-like, might I say:

 

(and yes, that is a stuffed bear that watches you as you descend the stairs)

I personally found Candy less to my taste…but can easily see where some of the Shibuya and Harajuku hipsters I see around (like S.P. with his blue hair) get their gear from. It is full of nu-rave gear, very bright neon in colour, with lots of paint splatters from the 80′s. There are a few KTZ items as I mentioned in my KTZ post here.

So we came, we saw…and went back back upstairs and bought the Femme Fatale tights, before finally bidding our goodbyes and hitting the street.

Bye bye, Sister and Candy…you KNOW I’ll be seeing you again!

Sister/Candy: Udagawa-cho 18-4, Shibuya-ku, tel: 03 5456 9891

Candy online shopSister online shop

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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 :)

Black Milk mcqueen-style

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?