BLOGGER TEMPLATES AND Twitter Backgrounds »

Monday, July 25, 2011

Fashion Presentation!

It's been a great two weeks! We've had presentations from FIT professors and fashion stylists; we've been to boutiques and cafes from Manhattan to Brooklyn; we've even had our make-up done by a professional make-up artist! This all went so fast, culminating with our Fashion Presentation this past Saturday. The students dressed their mannequins and decorated the room in preparation for the event. Family and friends and even curious strangers stopped by for free food and beverages and to admire the styling of our students.

"Mori-girl" style!
Each student had a mannequin (generously donated by Laura Kleinman of 4 Play Brooklyn) which they dressed with the clothing generously donated by Beacon's Closet in Williamsburg. The theme of the fashion presentation was "Streets," a re-visitation of Japanese street fashion. Each student's outfit represented their interpretation and vision of Japanese trends and fashion, such as the "mori-girl" ("forest-girl" in Japanese). From Shibuya to Shinjuku, Harajuku to Akihabara, each student's design was unique and definitely awesome!

"Street" Style!

Everyone at Japan Society would like to thank the student's and their families for joining us this Saturday and for the last two weeks. We had a ton of fun exploring New York and the world of Japanese fashion with you! Thank you Melissa Marra-Alvarez for running this program and to all the people who generously donated their clothing, time, and expertise!

Check back soon for pictures from the Fashion Presentation

See you next summer!

Friday, July 22, 2011

The Kimono House & Presentation Prep

Today, we had the opportunity to visit The Kimono House in SoHo. Despite the scorching weather, visiting the quaint store was well worth the trek. Run by Yuiko and her husband Ken, they talked to us about the various types of kimono's including the yukata, haori, obi, and various other pieces of clothing that complete a kimono outfit. Generally, a yukata is worn in the summer and made of cotton material though it can also be used as a bathrobe as well. On the other hand, we were also able to see other types of kimono's made of fine silk dating as far back as the 1940's. They specialize in vintage kimonos, which I found to be far more beautiful than its contemporary counterpart. Yuiko spoke of how the type of kimono worn was determined by the event a person was attending. For certain formal occasions, women would wear kimono's rich in color and pattern. On the other hand, for events such as a tea ceremony, a woman would not wear as eye catching of a kimono. In addition, she had also told of what sleeve length indicated. The greatest kimono an unmarried woman could wear would be the furisode, which has sleeves only a couple centimeters from the ankle. This type of kimono is not worn by married women, whom wear only kimono's with much shorter sleeves. Yuiko did not fail to speak of men's wear as well, which were far less complicated than women's. Generally, a male kimono is similar to a females except for the fact that it has more muted colors. She also introduced a yukata type of male dress that would be paired with what looked like shorts, which I unfortunately am unable to recall the name.

After giving the brief overview of the kimono and answering questions, Yuiko offered to allow a person to try on a yukata. I was lucky enough to be able to have the chance and was dressed in a beautiful floral printed yukata with a pink obi. Using the yukata I wore as an example, she showed how it could be mixed and matched with various different types of obi's giving the selection process variety and making it a great deal more fun. Taking it off afterwards was actually rather depressing, but it has inspired me to incorporate elements of the kimono into my everyday wardrobe.

When we were finished with our trip from The Kimono House, we headed back to Japan Society for lunch and quickly started the process of dressing our mannequins making rearrangements, getting rid of things, adding new pieces, and other changes to make our outfits the best that they could be. Those who finished early started on posters, drawings, duck-taping the floor, and other things around the room to give it ambiance. By the time the day was over, many things were still unaccomplished, yet the room was more satisfactory than not. I believe the guests attending tomorrows presentation will definitely be impressed by our hard work and knowledge that we have gained from our experiences over the past two weeks. 

-Helen L.

Designer: Nozomi Ishiguro

Find more here:


Dolley Kei Fashion

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Presentation Set-Up and Bill Cunningham

Today was a rather more relaxed day than most. In preparation for our fashion presentation on Saturday, we spent the morning planning and setting up decorations. Though there were only four of us, we split into two groups, one to start work on the city silhouettes and street signs, and one to make origami (although we all worked on that for a while) and create our dotted line path across the floor.

We got quite a lot of work done before breaking for lunch, and then headed off to the IFC theater to watch a documentary called "Bill Cunningham New York." It was the story of the man for whom it's named, who is a 82 year old photographer. He takes picture of people and their clothes, currently for the New York Times, and has for years. Some of his pictures are of models, and people who are famous, but a great deal are just of people he sees on the streets. Bill was very funny, and I really liked the movie. I'm really glad we got the chance to see it.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Styling : Shion Matsumoto

Today stylist Shion Matsumoto came to visit us (fortunately in our well air conditioned room at Japan Society). She briefly talked to us about styling while showing us some of the photographs of models she personally styled. I came to realize that styling may not be as simple as I thought it was. For example preparations for one fashion show can take about 3-5 weeks even though the actual show would last only a few minutes. One thing I found interesting was that although all the photographs she showed us were from Japanese magazines the models were all Western. Why? you may ask but it's because Western models were found to have slim long legs and body figures that were found best to fit the Japanese trend clothing. Being a stylist means not only will you have to choose how the clothes will be worn but you also have to style the clothes in a way that would compliment the model.

We had the chance to ask her a few questions such as "What inspired you to become a stylist?". Shion's inspiration came from her mother being a stylist for magazines. Then of course there's also her passion for being a stylist. Another question was "Who was the hardest to style?". To my surprise she replied with "Musicians". I would think musicians usually wear casual clothing so therefore they must be the easiest to style. She went on to explain that models and actors usually have a flawless body but on the other hand musicians are simply musicians that may not be in top form. She found it difficult to dress different body structures and forms instead of having to style clothes on a Barbie or Ken like figure.

Our questions were slowly answered one by one until we were left with none. We bid her farewell as we were running late on schedule for our workshop at the Apple Store. At the Apple Store we were greeted by a few workers that proceeded to start our lesson on a program called Garage Band. I was actually really fascinated with this alien-like software to me but sadly I do not own a mac or apple product that runs this program. Garage Band is a software that helps you loop or mix beats, tones, short melodies that eventually turns into a (hopefully) captivating song. You have the choice of also adding your mix into an everyday song or maybe one of your favorites on  iTunes. If you wanted to spice it up even more you can even actually add your own vocals! This was a great workshop because we intend on adding songs that would play in the background during the presentation as if we were having our own little fashion show. To end the workshop and day I found it wonderful to have received apple earphones, a free t-shirt, of course don't forget about the knowledge of everything we have learned today.

- - Tiffany Hsu<3