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The Real Harajuku Girls

WWD plucked consumers from the bustling streets of Harajuku and asked them about their personal style and shopping habits.

Ami Yoshida

Ami Yoshida

Photo By Yukie Kasuga

Ami Yoshida

Ami Yoshida

Photo By Yukie Kasuga

TOKYO — Young Japanese women are an eclectic bunch, mining fashion influences as disparate as Nicole Richie, Comme des Garçons and Novala Takemoto, an author and seminal figure of the Lolita subculture. WWD plucked a sample of these consumers from the bustling streets of Harajuku and asked them about their personal style and shopping habits. Here’s what they had to say.

Ami Yoshida, 18, waitress

WWD: How do you approach style?

A.Y.: I always start with accessories, like bags and shoes. I wear different kinds of clothes but I start with the small things.

WWD: What are your fashion influences?

A.Y.: I really like Rinka, who is a Japanese model. Everyone in Japan knows her, and I think she’s really cool. I also like cool and casual style, like Nicole Richie’s. I like American fashion.

WWD: How has your style evolved over the years?

A.Y.: I used to like flashy, gaudy fashion, but recently it’s become simpler. I don’t wear many prints; I tend to stick to solid colors.

WWD: Do you follow any designers?

A.Y.: For fall, I think Miu Miu’s shoes are cute. I didn’t really like Chanel this season. But Miu Miu is cute. It uses unusual materials, like on the collars.

WWD: How often do you shop and how much do you typically spend?

A.Y.: I shop about once a month. When I don’t spend much money, it’s about 30,000 yen [$356]. But when there’s something good, like the [$830] coat I bought recently, I didn’t buy anything else that month.

Yui Abiko

Yui Abiko

Photo By Yukie Kasuga


Yui Abiko, 23, sales associate

WWD: What are your fashion influences?

Y.A.: I think magazines are good. I usually look at Spur and Ginza. I also like Agyness Deyn.

WWD: How has your style evolved over the years?

Y.A.: It’s become much harder. I used to wear sweeter, more feminine clothes.

WWD: Where do you shop?

Y.A.: I go to La Foret a lot to shop at H.P. France, or to Candy in Shibuya.

WWD: How often do you shop and how much do you typically spend?

Y.A.: I don’t really go shopping that often, but I browse about once a week. I probably spend about 30,000 yen [$356] a month.

Risa Kurosu

Risa Kurosu

Photo By Yukie Kasuga



Risa Kurosu, 19, student

WWD: Describe your current look.

R.K.: It’s casual. For fall, I’m really liking a style that’s a little nostalgic or French looking.

WWD: Do you follow any designers?

R.K.: I don’t really follow high-end brands.

WWD: Where do you shop?

R.K.: I go to Shinjuku, Harajuku and vintage stores. In Shinjuku, there’s a brand called Lowry’s Farm that I like.

WWD: What is the most expensive thing you bought recently?

R.K.: It’s not really expensive but I bought a pair of moccasins for about 6,000 yen [$71].



Aya Shinohara, 21, student

WWD: What are your fashion influences?

A.S.: My parents. My mother used to work for Comme des Garçons part time, and she kept things that she used to wear when she was about my age. I like the [Lolita movement] writer Novala Takemoto, so I read his books and buy the kind of fashion he likes.

WWD: How has your style evolved over the years?

A.S.: In high school I used to wear Lolita outfits. Now I like pop things and I wear a lot of vintage. But I still wear frilly, Lolita-like styles.

WWD: Where do you shop?

A.S.: I like Harajuku, and vintage stores in Koenji. I often go to Shibuya Parco because there are lots of different brands and it’s fun to look around. But when it comes to buying things, I would say I most often shop vintage stores.

WWD: What is the most expensive thing you bought recently?

A.S.: During the July sales, I bought a jacket by Sunao Kuwahara for about 23,000 yen [$273].

 

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