It's the next installment of my visit to Japan.
As I said before, on the 1st of January, nearly everything was closed! However, the 2nd was the day the sales started in many shops. So what else to do, but shop?
My first stop was the second-hand Loli/Goth/Punk/VK shop Closet Child Shinjuku. We arrived a little while before it opened, and there were a few lolis waiting around outside. I started on the highest floor, selling punk and gothic items. Next was the Lolita floor, and that was getting very busy! I found two blue velvet jumperskirts on the sale rail, one Metamorphose and one Emily Temple Cute. I have always wanted a blue velvet dress, and these were both so nice!
Luckily I had the luxury of being able to try them on, something which non-Japanese lolis don't often have. The Meta one was more frilly and ornate, with a lace trim, whereas the Emikyu one had a rather subtle design with a plain bodice and a panels at the front where the nap of the velvet was alternately reversed to make stripes. Well, it was lucky I did try them, for I'm afraid the Meta jsk did me no favours, but I fell head over heels for the Emikyu one! I also tried on a beautiful almond-coloured Victorian Maiden coat, but I decided to put off buying a new coat until later when I'd had a proper look around.
I had a quick browse of the next floor down where the Vivienne Westwood items are sold, then went on the music Closet Child, which is located nearby in a separate building. Pure Sound is also nearby (another second-hand VK shop) and I got JE*REVIENS and MALICE MIZER cds. I wanted to get Aioria's one and only album, but alas, I couldn't find anything by them all trip. In Pure Sound there was only the separator marked "Aioria" and no cds!
We had lunch in Gusto, one of Japan's many chains of family restaurants. I'm very fond of family restaurants! They serve supposedly Western-style food, but the dishes tend to be rather unique to Japan (such as omu-rice, and katsu-sando). I had Hamburg steak :D Oh dear, I need to cultivate a more established taste in food! I did have more refined things on other days though, don't worry.
Thus fortified, I made my way to MARUI ONE. Guess what, I saw one of my idols, Choco-nyan! She works in Emily Temple Cute. I hope I didn't stare too much. I wasn't sure at first, but the parting of her fringe is very distinctive (and as you might well guess I'm rather particular about fringes XD) and when I saw it I was certain it was her!
It was quite busy there too, but not crazy. We did all the shops! Metamorphose has some nice bags and socks at the moment with a somewhat scholarly air, very suitable for Classic Lolita. Also, the staff are really charming and smiling! arthérapie has gorgeous things as usual, and I saw some items very similar to a particularly lovely Jean Paul Gautier series that was a Japan exclusive some time ago, with an embossed rose. JESUS DIAMANTE was the one shop that was completely deserted. Has it fallen out of favour? La Parfait on the other hand, which I find rather similar in style, was bustling. On the top floor I picked up Cure magazine, which has D on the cover, and an English interview with them. Actually, I got to meet them again while I was there! I'll tell you all about that soon.
KERA SHOP ANGEL was filled with loveliness, and I had a lot of fun trying out different accessories on my head! A lot of items were 20 or 30% off. I really admired the hats from corgi-corgi, which are even nicer than they appear in KERA and GLB. My companion was kind enough to buy me one, a pretty milk-tea coloured affair with a brim heaped with velvety brown roses! A very nice Christmas present, thank you~
I also picked up some socks in MARUI, a lucky find since they were just the thing to turn the rest of the day's aquisitions into a coordinate!
The next place I wanted to visit was MYLORD, since I've been looking at the webshops of quite a few non-Lolita Japanese brands lately. MYLORD mostly caters towards a pretty, soft and feminine aesthetic, not offbeat like Lolita, and not sexy like Gal, and not slavishly fashionable either. Some brands are more casual than others, and there's a few different price ranges. I had been admiring L'est Rose and f.i.n.t from afar, but I have to say, though they were nice (particularly L'est Rose, which is very nice quality and has some adorable dresses and sets) nothing I saw gave me the same wonderful feeling as Lolita. I think it was good to have a look around these shops, both to give me the inspiration that comes from seeing something fresh, but also to reassure me that I love Lolita.
Lace and fur collars were everywhere in MYLORD, brogue shoes, satchels, long pleated skirts and cropped loose sweaters. I liked the natural, soft colours and the dreamy impression of the clothes. The atmosphere however was not dreamy! I have never been shouted at so much in my life! It was somewhat like going to an English street market where the vendors call out "Flowers are lovely dear!" and that sort of thing. However, this is indoors, at great volume, in a high nasal voice, through a paper megaphone thing that the shop girls also bang on to make even more noise. They were announcing a 'time sale', something that I haven't heard of outside Japan, where sale items get reduced even further for a limited time (a few hours or so). I didn't buy anything, despite all the loud encouragement (I didn't mind the noise actually, it made things more exciting though I did find it a rather strange experience).
We finished the day with tea and cake at Ducky Duck in MYLORD. With a name like that, how could one miss and opportunity for a visit? The service was very good actually, and I liked being given a little sand timer so my rose tea didn't get stewed.
Next time I'll be living the high life in Ebisu and Ginza! Please check back soon for the next post, and I hope you enjoyed reading this one.