I’ve now been here in Tokyo for just over two weeks, have gotten accustomed to the time-change, hit up the drugstore for numerous products to help me combat the mugginess and heat (more on that later), nabbed some of the latest fashion magazines, and been out and about to the main trendy shopping destinations. So I now have a bit of a handle on what is “on-trend” or, more importantly, what’s on the backs, feet, and arms of the young and fashionable.

Here are some themes I’ve seen so far:

1. Open-Weave Strappy Wedge Heels

Baby Pure Cross-Up Wedge Sandal, EVOL, ¥5806

Wedges are the current height of fashion, popular in wood and cork, as well as the ever-prevalent black.

2. Layered False Eyelashes + Heavy Eyeliner

Scan from PopTeen August 2011 issue

No longer content with just a single pair of falsies, Japanese girls are now layering 2 or even 3 pairs of full or cut lashes on the top lid, with 1 or 2 pairs of full lashes on the lower lid, surrounded by thick black eyeliner smudged out.  It gives the eye a very doll-like effect…especially since some girls offset the placement of the lashes at the outer corners to make the eyes look even bigger.

3. Printed Maxi-Culottes

Monotone All-in-One, DOSCH, ¥2980

I’ve seen tiny flowers and “ethnic” prints on these wide-legged chiffon pieces…I certainly couldn’t pull this look off but some are effortlessly!

4. Headbands Worn Around the Head 70’s-Style


Photo: Style-arena.jp

Spotted just about everywhere: long, wavy, often ombre-d hair with black stretchy headbands or beaded leather strips worn around the forehead…Rumi clones?

5. Crochet or Open-Knit Tops

Biancheri Tutu, ¥4,095

Just to provide another light layer; in white, neutral, and black; open-weave crop tops are donned on top of maxis and tanks for a flower-child vibe.

6. Oversized Thick-Frame Glasses

Photo: Style-arena.jp

I guess what could be called a “Fashion Blogger’s Staple,” these thick-framed nerd glasses have made their way to Japan.  I have to admit that Japanese girls look pretty cute with them!

7. Breezy Maxi-Dresses

Rapty, ¥5,990

Most days I feel it’s too hot for any separates, and girls here also default often to the “one-piece” maxi; this year, with shirring at the bust, skinny straps, vintage-style faded prints, and a loose fit.

8. Cropped/Batwing T-Shirts

Ribbon-print loose tee, Rapty, ¥2,300

Instead of the “body-conscious” fit that’s been popular for the last decade or so, tops now have dropped shoulders or batwing sleeves to provide a looseness on the top half – balanced out by their short length at the bottom.

9. Hats…Of All Kinds!

Photo: Style-arena.jp

This year there seems to be an amazing array of popular headgear; from straw boaters, canvas Panama hats, and floppy American Apparel felt hats; to Marine-style structured pieces, newsboy caps, and crochet beanies…this year it seems that anything goes in order to keep the sun’s rays away.

10. Midi-length Pleated Chiffon Skirts

Dazzlin, ¥5,071

No longer above-the-knee or floor-length, skirts now are popular in a mid-shin length, in a pleated chiffon…favored in neutrals, drab colors, and pastels.


Many of these trends from above have been around for awhile, and even those from last summer (striped maxi-dresses, silk scarves as headwear, flat gladiator sandals, straw hats) are still going strong.

Other trends?

Snacks: Pickled-plum-flavored dried kelp sticks, fettucine gummis, collagen-infused parfaits by DHC, low-sugar sodas, “dry” Pepsi, the Jill Stuart cafe, flavored marshmallows.

Music: AK48, K-Pop groups.

Other: Tracy Anderson workout, UNIQLO t-shirts printed with Japanese drink and snack mascots, medical drama TV shows, polkadot-prints, asymmetirc hemlines, bolo-tie necklaces, mineral makeup.


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