Kyunkun is a girl born in Tokyo who defines herself as a “Robot Fashion creator”. She started making wearable prototypes using arduinos and LEDs and little by little she evolved her style by adding mechanical elements. Her latest model is some kind of bag with arms coming out of the back. For the moment this is just a hobby and to make a living she does temporary work “baitos” バイト.
In the following videos you can see the process followed by Kyunkun to create her “wearable” robot models.
Since so many tourists were attracted to the Harajuku bridge, it has become more and more difficult to spot young Japanese people dressed following the style of Tokyo urban tribes. Some years ago if you went on a Sunday to Harajuku it was very easy to see lolitas walking around and showing off. Nowadays it is much more difficult but if you are lucky you can still spot some small groups dressing as if they had came out of a fantasy animation movie set in an alternative Victorian era.
Fundoshi (褌) is the most well-known Japanese traditional undergarment for men. With the arrival of Western underwear after World War II it felt out of use. Nowadays they are only used in traditional festivals (“matsuri”) and as traditional swimming suits.
Photo by Rocket news
The Japan Fundoshi Association has launched a Manga Fundoshi Kickstarter. The funding period ends at the end of this month so you still have some hours left to collaborate with the project and get your favorite manga fundoshi
In the website of the association you can find an explanation of how to put on a fundoshi step by step:
One of the latest weird trends in Japan consists on using artificial fangs so that they stick out a little bit and give you a vampirish look. The Japanese term for the new trend is “yaeba”, which means something like “an extra/added layer to the tooth”.
Tomomi Itano, one of the AKB48 members, is one of the “movement” leaders. This is how Tomomi Itano looks, her fang is natural:
I don’t really understand the technique to create the vampirish effect, but there’s even dentists specialized in adding “yaeba” to girls. According to what I have read the main reasons for Japanese girls to change their fangs so that they stick out are:
And that’s about it, a trend to have an imperfection in your face… and you pay for it! What do you think? Cute or not cute?
If you want to see more pictures there’s a blog dedicated only to “yaeba”.
Ageha magazine, one of the most sold magazines in Japan, has just published an articled about the latest trends in gyaru hairstyles. Gyaru girls fashion is quite eccentric; for example they love to exaggerate aspects of their eyelashes and their hairstyle.
Some weeks ago this video of some girls walking around Harajuku with some kind of device lightening up their mouth was published on the Internet.
Many people, mostly foreigners, thought that it was a new trend in Tokyo. But we, the people that live here, haven’t seen anybody on the streets with LED lights on their mouth. The video was made by professionals (the girls are actresses) for a promotion of the department store LaForet in Harajuku. It is not a new Japanese trend as some “rumors” point on the Internet.
However, as the video is so popular now maybe it will become a trend very soon, who knows… 😉
As I visited San Francisco last month I took the opportunity to buy a pair of Vibram Fivefingers. The Vibram Fivefingers are sport shoes that adapt to the shape of your feet like a glove would do to your hands. The sensation of running with them is very similar to running barefoot.
The feeling after putting the Vibram Fivefingers on for the first time is pretty weird. The easiest way to put them on is to put first the big toe and after that fit the rest of the toes as you can. In this two pictures Pablo tries a gray pair on; eventually we both bought the Vibram Fivefinger KSO model in black.
One of the things that doctors usually recommend is that running or walking barefoot on the beach is excellent. When you walk barefoot you do it naturally, the human body is designed to walk barefoot. The problem with running using shoes is that as they have a soft sole we tend to make contact with the ground first with the heel. This is specially not good when running because the impact in every stride is pretty strong, all our body weight is absorbed first by the heel and then by the knees, hips, back… If you like jogging you know that one of the problems that arises after some time jogging regularly is knee pain. And sometimes it even causes pains in the lower part of the back.
When running barefoot or with some shoes like the Vibram Fivefingers the running motion changes, instead of making contact with the ground first with the heel we make it with the middle part of the foot. That is the natural way to run for humans. If you have more interest in how running barefoot benefits your health I recommend you the book Born to Run.
In this graph you can see more clearly what I’m trying to explain:
I’ve been using them lately and the experience has been fantastic. When I just put them on I immediately want to start running or start jumping! It’s like being barefoot but outside of your house, on the street, everywhere. At the beginning I went jogging 10km a couple of times, I got more tired than usual and it seems like I used muscles that normally I don’t use when running because I had muscle pain the next day in rare places. I also got a small blister in the the tip of one toe, I guess you have to get used to them.
iPad, Smoothie and Vibram Fivefingers. The whole set to be a trendy Californian geek.
Even Sergey Brin, co-founder of Google, has his Vibram Fivefingers and shows them off in public. (Photo by Steve Jurvetson)
High five! Pablo and I testing our Vibram Fivefingers at Stanford campus.
A new trend is emerging in Harajuku, a neighborhood where you can frequently find many of the urban tribes in Tokyo. The new trend is brought by a new urban tribe auto denominated: “skirt men” (スカート男子). There are still not many men wearing skirts but there are already two shops specialized in skirts for men. In this video that I recorded directly from a TV report a “skirt men” (スカート男子) goes into a shop where he finds many skirts specially designed for men.
Photos by Nakazakityo