Love for Harajuku Style


Written by Jamie
January 30, 2010

Photographs courtesy of Apt 3 Photography.

It was our pleasure to attend the outrageously fun "Harajuku Japanese Street Chic Demonstration & Fashion Show" earlier this month at The Textile Museum in Dupont Circle. The show was held in conjunction with the Museum’s exhibits,"Fabrics of Feathers and Steel: The Innovation of Nuno," and "Contemporary Japanese Fashion: The Mary Baskett Collection," which highlight the design techniques, fabrics, and the innovative work of top Japanese fashion designers: Issey Miyake, Yohji Yamamoto, and Rei Kawakubo. Unlike shows featuring ready-to-wear lines, which are more typical of the local fashion scene, this fashion show, co-presented by Nick Ferris of T-Mode , featured locals (including an area high school student) in various head-to-toe Harajuku ensembles-all of whom have been "costuming" for years! One model even showcased her own impressively detailed creation (1st photo). Ferris took us through the different Harajuku styles (Gothic Lolita, Sweet Lolita, Visual Kei, Kawaii, and much more!), explaining them individually in detail, but further explained how the super creative styles and emphasis on "cuteness" may have come about in reaction to historic events (for e.g., loss of World War II), and the past conformity of Japanese culture. And just to make sure that we weren't completely distracted by the fashion alone, there was even a Harajuku/Japanese culture trivia game at the end to test our brand new knowledge with a bit of history thrown in there. After the show, we mingled with the models, the fabulous Textile Museum and T-Mode staff, and were treated to delicious Japanese and Asian hors d'œuvres, tea, and dessert. Be sure to check out the above-mentioned Textile Museum exhibits on contemporary Japanese fashion and design, "Fabrics of Feathers and Steel: The Innovation of Nuno," and "Contemporary Japanese Fashion: The Mary Baskett Collection," both running through April 11. Additionally, local jewelry designer, Evelyn Brooks will present her collection, ”A Legacy of Elegance in a Seed” on February 6 at the Textile Museum.

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